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Google Android 3.2 SDK Tablet Screen

google, android, honeycomb,

Google has released a software development kit for Android Honeycomb 3.2 that makes it easier for users and developers to adjust the mobile operating system to the different screen sizes used in Android-based tablets.

Though Android 3.2 is just “an incremental release,” according Xavier Ducrohet of the Android Developers blog, the SDK does add “several new capabilities for users and developers,” such as fulfilling a promise to include a new screen compatibility mode that optimizes non-Honeycomb apps for use on tablets.

The updated OS now has a “compatibility display mode” that allows users to “zoom” to fill a tablet’s screen with a “pixel-scaled alternative to the standard UI stretching” which is already present on Android Honeycomb.

In an earlier blog post addressing Android 3.2, Scott Main, lead tech writer for developer.android.com, said that since most apps look fine on tablets without the new screen compatibility mode, developers with apps that already resize well to tablets should disable the screen compatibility option.

“When the user enables this new screen compatibility mode, the system no longer resizes [a developer’s] layout to fit the screen. Instead, it runs your app in an emulated normal/mdpi screen (approximately 320dp x 480dp) and scales that up to fill the screen,” Main wrote in a blog post last week.

The Android 3.2 platform also optimizes Honeycomb for smaller tablets, such as devices with 7-inch screens, while also serving up an extended screen support API that gives developers “more precise control over their UI across the range of Android-powered devices,” according to Ducrohet.

Finally, Android 3.2 now lets users of devices that support a removable SD card load media files directly from the card to apps that use them.

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