Every Google app gets UI changes for Android tablets

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In a show of dedication to the form factor, Google said at I/O 2022 that it will adapt more than 20 of its first-party apps for giant screens. Existing owners will obviously benefit, and it’s meant to inspire other developers to follow suit. Here’s a list of every Google app for Android that’s gotten a tablet update, plus what’s in the works. Google Photos, Google’s flagship Android tablet app, received an update in January 2021. It’s no different from the web interface. As opposed to a bottom bar, a navigation rail on the left side lets you view a bit more vertical content and more tabs without feeling cramped.

I’ve said before that Google Calendar is my favorite tablet app, mainly because of the excellent Day and Calendar views where you see the whole month on the left with a list of events next to it while illustrations animate the back- plan. It doesn’t look like the company is considering any changes. While there’s obvious website reuse, the calendar team has differentiated the app for tablets significantly, and that’s surprisingly rare for Google. Chrome on Android tablets is almost identical to the desktop interface considering the use of tab strips and the Omnibox layout. There is also support for multiple windows to make multitasking easier.

In addition to Photos, Search, Sharing, and Library, you have quick access to On Device, Utilities, Archive, and Trash. A little piece of hardware you’ve changed over the past few months is a pill-shaped indicator to note which tab you’re viewing instead of just highlighting the icon. At the top of the screen, next to “Google Photos”, is a search bar with rounded corners. When viewing a photo in full screen, swiping up reveals a right pane while overflowing in the upper right corner of the viewer shows actions accompanied by icons.

In the future, playlists will adopt a similar two-column view as part of a larger package for this UI. Like YouTube, Music could switch to a navigation rail, though that would slightly limit the horizontal space available for browsing the shelves (and anything under four tabs looks odd for that UI element). Additionally, the image below shows YouTube Music retaining the bottom bar.

Summary of news:

  • Every Google app gets UI changes for Android tablets
  • Check out all the news and articles from the latest security news updates.
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