Android 12L is Google’s third attempt to conquer larger screens. The only way to be successful is for Google to fully commit to it.
He once tried a dedicated tablet operating system and found almost nothing. Part of the reason is the apparent lack of enthusiasm for the form factor. Why should third-party developers care? If Google is to succeed in Android 12L, it must learn from its history and its mistakes.
Google and tablets, grab one
Honeycomb, also known as Android 3.0, came out almost ten years ago and represented Google’s ambitions for the tablet form factor in 2012 – an operating system that would usher in a new era. applications and software using larger screens. Instead, only a few apps were optimized for the experience by Google (Gmail, Contacts, Calendar), but the rest were just upgraded versions of their mobile counterparts.
The excitement was palpable for a while, and some third-party developers jumped on the ad benchmark, tweaking their apps and using “snippets” as Google recommends to split the larger screen into different sections. On the other hand, Apple pushed and developed iOS so much on iPads that it would end up splitting it into its own ecosystem. The difference between the two approaches could not be more obvious.
Take-Two or the Chrome OS experience
Google’s second attempt to make a tablet came a few years ago when it launched the Pixel Slate. still offers the full setup for those who wanted a keyboard and trackpad.
Unfortunately, the reception of the Slate was not very enthusiastic, especially since Google once again did not set up the interface correctly. Between the tiny Chrome icons that are not easy to touch and the poor integration of Android applications with the rest of the operating system, the experience was far from ideal. While there are some great Chrome OS tablets out there, the software experience is still very poor.
Is Android 12L the allure?
Android 12L marks Google’s third foray into the tablet ecosystem, although this time it is not limited to a specific type of device, but rather aims to bridge the gap between phones, flaps, tablets. and computers. Consistent software experience, regardless of screen size. The system and apps would adapt to the canvas given to them, stretching to fill a large desktop screen when connected to a Chromebox, then thins to fit a small phone.
What we have seen so far is encouraging. There is proper multi-window and multitasking support, along with a complete overhaul of notifications and settings to allow two windows. Displaying more content in a smarter way is the goal of larger screens, and Android 12L seems to be taking this challenge seriously.
But that is not enough, far from it. The system is only part of the equation. Apps must follow suit, and Google has already released extensive documentation and design guides to help developers customize their apps. much more important: consistency.