Honeycomb is one of the eagerly awaited operating systems by Google available for Android based tablets.
Honeycomb has been optimized for a full-tablet experience with a nice graphicy interface and lots of short-cuts which is great news for users who want quick launches or streams of twitter to their main screen.
The Home Screen
Unlike previous versions of Android, the status bar is usually located at the top of the screen whereas with Honeycomb, you will now find your status bar at the bottom of the screen.
All of your notifications will now be located at the bottom right of the screen and thanks to Google making the interface more intuitive, all you have to do is click on the notification e.g. music to open up your music content.
We have previously seen Google use Android stack tabs through Google Books. This allows the user to flick through all of your books from the home screen without even opening the application itself – pretty cool eh?
With smart phone applications already selling by the masses in the Market for Android, there is a lot of pressure to make sure that these applications are compatible with tablets too.
When Apple first released the iPad, Apple said that all games and applications in the App Store would be compatible with their smart tablet but would run in a windowed environment, and yes, it looked pretty terrible having the resolution blown up twice and pixilation in the game.
Google on the other hand have taken a different approach and made many of the apps in the Market native with a tablet environment.
At Google’s press conference, Google demonstrated ‘Fruit Ninja’ (which is an amazing game and I thoroughly recommend it). The game was written well before Honeycomb was even released and was made available to developers straight away.
What we are going to be an awful lot of in 2011 with both smart phones and tablets is video calling. With the current versions of Android, you have to download a third party application like Skype to enable you to video call – until now. Honeycomb will come with video calling compatibility out of the box.
Summing it up
Competition to Android may come in many different shapes and forms but where Android went wrong was putting a smart phone operating system on a tablet, it was just far too premature for a tablet – and Android will boom with the intro of Honeycomb.
Its tablet designed and spot on for what a tablet should be as a platform. All we have to do now is see how well Blackberry with their QNX tablet stacks up.
Stay tuned for more info.
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