Google Shows Honeycomb, the new Android 3.0

January 7, 2011 by
Google showed off the first preview of features in Honeycomb, its upcoming version of Android 3.0 designed for tablets, during the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

"We wanted our tablet experience to be better, not just bigger," said Mike Cleron, principal software engineer for Google.

"Honeycomb is the next version of the Android platform, designed from the ground up for devices with larger screen sizes, particularly tablets. We’ve spent a lot of time refining the user experience in Honeycomb, and we’ve developed a brand new, truly virtual and holographic user interface. Many of Android’s existing features will really shine on Honeycomb: refined multi-tasking, elegant notifications, access to over 100,000 apps on Android Market, home screen customization with a new 3D experience and redesigned widgets that are richer and more interactive. We’ve also made some powerful upgrades to the web browser, including tabbed browsing, form auto-fill, syncing with your Google Chrome bookmarks, and incognito mode for private browsing."

Honeycomb also features the latest Google Mobile innovations including Google Maps 5 with 3D interactions and offline reliability, access to over 3 million Google eBooks, and Google Talk, which now allows you to video and voice chat with any other Google Talk enabled device (PC, tablet, etc).

Gmail has been completely redesigned for tablets with Honeycomb. It displays columns with the left one listing folders, the middle a list of contacts and the right column showing recent messages.

Cleron also showed off Google Maps 5.0 with new features that were recently added. The audience sounded impressed with the feature that lets a user drag two fingers on the screen to tilt the map and show drawings of buildings.

Honeycomb receives notifications of new messages but includes a bit more data than in previous Android versions. For instance when a user receives an email, the notification that pops up includes a small phone of the person who sent the message.

Posted in: Google/Android


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