Google officially unveiled Android 3.0 Honeycomb, demoing it on the Motorola Xoom which was introduced at CES 2011 last month, in an event today. The demonstration video showed a handful of features that Honeycomb OS offers like the Notification System, Application Optimization and a new built-in Render Script for hardware accelerated 3D graphics.
Here are some of Honeycomb features that came trhought the presentation:
1. Notification System
The Honeycomb GUI has been optimized for tablets and it has buttons for Home, Back and Multitasking on the lower left while the lower right has notifications and clock. The new multitasking button will show visual preview of the recently used applications and the states that they are currently in. The Notification system has been redesigned for better user experience.
The rest of the screen is entirely dedicated to applications and Google said the Home screen is not just a screen where icons can be arranged but also a developer platfrom in itself. Google also showcased different widgets for Gmail, calendar, Grid for bookmarks, Stack for news or e-books etc. One intuitive feature about is the multitouch support which enables users to scroll through more than one widget at a time (much awaited feature).
2. Application Optimization
Google said that it wants to encourage developers to build tablet optimized applications/games, so it introduced what it called Application Fragment. The Fragment will allow a static frame for the app that can be used throughout the app while the other pane can be dynamic. In the video, Google demonstrated how the Application Fragment works using the Honeycomb/tablet version of Gmail. The feature also offers drag and drop in the Gmail application and the top has an application bar which is context-sensitive based.
3. Render Script Graphic Engine
Using the Script Graphic Engine, Honeycomb is able to show fluid and smooth 3D transitions in the web or applications. The Script also enables various 3D animations and graphics for the Honeycomb OS which will be running on various devices. Google also said that it had worked hard enough to make sure that the OS will get optimized 3D for different tablet devices running on multi-core processors.