Update 30-06-2012: Version 2.0 includes the new Nexus 7 in Portrait and Landscape!
Besides the Android ICS GUI Design Kit that can be used in Adobe Photoshop, I also think (and love!) that sketching is a big part of UI/UX designing, while it can be messy, but it definitely help in quick idea visualization and aid in brainstorming.
So here I come up with two sketch templates for Android App, using the Samsung Nexus S and Samsung Galaxy Nexus as the sample devices, and put them on an A4-sized PDF with almost real-life size so designers can sketch the app with the size as close as the real device (don’t blame me if there is one or two pixels off! /jk/).
Android app designer, go create some awesome apps with the GUI Design Kit and GUI Sketching Kit!
Android GUI Sketching Kit – Nexus S
Android GUI Sketching Kit – Galaxy Nexus
Android GUI Sketching Kit – Nexus 7 Tablet – Portrait
Android GUI Sketching Kit – Nexus 7 Tablet – Landscape
Android GUI Sketching Kit – Galaxy Nexus and Nexus 7 Tablet
The announcement of Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) and the new Galaxy Nexus certainly are exciting news for Android supporter, though it is a little bit sad to know that Nexus One won’t get the sweetness that Ice Cream Sandwich offers (at least officially).
There has been a promise of Nexus S getting Ice Cream Sandwich few weeks after the release of Galaxy Nexus, however, I am sure most of the Nexus S (and other Android device that is eligible for the update) user couldn’t wait any longer for the release. Good news is that Google already released the SDK of Android 4.0, so while waiting for the official release, we can have a go on the sweetness via the emulator on the computer.
How about a real ROM on the device now? If you are adventurous enough to try an unstable ROM (and by unstable, I really meant it) which is not meant for daily normal usage – you got it. Drew Garen from drewgaren.com has put in some efforts to convert the available SDK into a working ROM for Nexus S and it is working surprisingly well (not entirely stable but it is surprise to see this stability from a ROM built from an SDK).
If you are interested and ready to take some risk, you can refer to the guide here on how to get it install (even if you haven’t root your Nexus S), however, if you would like to see what’s new and how does it run on Nexus S, keep reading. Continue reading [Android] First Impression of unofficial Ice Cream Sandwich on Google Nexus S
Battery mystery in Google Nexus S
Ever since Day 1 with Google Nexus S, I never have the phone fully charged at 100% – the phone always claimed to be fully charged at 94%-97%, and charging the device overnight doesn’t help. Faulty battery?
Nope. Luckily my 1500mAh Lithium-ion battery in Google Nexus S seems to be pretty normal after I did some extensive studies on this phenomena. Not too sure it will occurs in all other Android devices, but apparently fully charged at the battery life of less than 100% in Google Nexus S is not something need to be worried.
In Byron G’s study, he did an extensive study on the charging and discharging conditions on his HTC Droid Incredible and figure out the reason of inconsistent battery drains, especially during a full charge. It’s a lengthy article, which is a pretty interesting one, so if you have about 15 minutes to digest it, do check it out.
Continue reading Day 10 with Nexus S: Battery mystery, 10 Battery Power Saving Tips #Maxis10
Experiences in Day 9
Great Gaming Experience
In the recent years, 3D processing capability on the mobile devices seems to have evolved in a very rapid trend – who would have thought that a mobile device is capable to run a full-featured 3D game with touch screen interface, 10 years ago? Thanks to the advancement in nano-scale fabrication and tons of research done on the System-on-a-Chip (SoC), we are in an era that can enjoy most, if not all, of the stuffs on the computer, in a mobile device that has a size of our palm.
Besides being the first phone to present the new Gingerbread, Google Nexus S also, in my opinion, act as a benchmark for other manufacturers on how should a Gingerbread device should be. Unlike in iOS which now has a huge database of great games since the first generation of iPhone, Android is still pretty new in the mobile gaming scenes, but it is obvious that more and more manufacturers are trying to push Android devices as portable gaming devices by incorporating high end specs (like Google Nexus S, Samsung Galaxy S, Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, just to name a few) – a good thing for consumer especially gamers since more alternatives are available.
Equipped with PowerVR SGX540 GPU in the Samsung Hummingbird SoC, I can safely say that Nexus S can fire up all of the games available in the Android Market, including Dungeon Defenders, the first game on the Android that pushes the limit on the hardware (correct me if I am wrong), is pretty playable on the Nexus S. If you have a Samsung Galaxy S, Nexus S should have a pretty similar performance since they share the same SoC. I have picked the Top 5 games on the Nexus S (after tons of playing and testing), so let’s check it out!
Continue reading Day 9 with Nexus S: Great gaming device, Top 5 Games #Maxis10
Experiences in Day 8
Tech Specs Review
Being the first Android device to run the new Gingerbread and the second official Google phone, Samsung knew that the specifications for Google Nexus S must be somewhat at the high end level to showcase the performance of newly optimized and refined Gingerbread without tagging the device at a screaming price, therefore the one-year-old ARM Cortex A8 (similar to the processor powered the Apple iPad) based Samsung Hummingbird processor is definitely is the right choice to go, since Samsung Galaxy S and Samsung Galaxy Tab has been using the same processor (thus the lower production cost), and this 1GHz processor feature a very good balance between performance and power consumption. While it is still slightly disappointing that Google (or Samsung?) does not choose to equip Nexus S with the best specs currently available (Nvidia Tegra 2 chipset for instance), but all in all, Samsung Hummingbird processor is still piece of pretty impressive hardware in modern mobile devices.
Continue reading Day 8 with Nexus S: High end specs, Hidden apps #Maxis10
Experiences in Day 7
Thanks to the ‘Google’ in the Google Samsung Nexus S, this second Google official Android device has the privilege to run the latest version of Android – Gingerbread or 2.3.3, and the only word I can used to describe it is – Tasty. In general, Gingerbread has a well-refined user interface, better keyboard than the one in Éclair and Froyo, some new features like Car Home, NFC, and some butter.
If you have been using Android devices running Android 2.0/2.1 (Éclair) or Android 2.2 (Froyo), you won’t find Gingerbread a stranger as it is still pretty similar to the previous version of Android in terms of appearance except some enhancements, added support and refinement, and Gingerbread’s color scheme is now in black by default. And the butter I am talking about, it is all about the smoothness and user experience exists in Gingerbread – agreed by all of my friends using Froyo and Éclair devices. Even some of my friends using iPhones feel pretty impressed for Nexus S that Google and Samsung brought together – it is definitely something great to know.
Continue reading Day 7 with Nexus S: Tasty Gingerbread, tasty features #Maxis10
Experiences in Day 6
Day 6 with Nexus S, and I think I really liked this phone. Slick outlook, smooth Gingerbread, high end specs – I am sold. Since it is a Gingerbread Android phone, one of the advantages is the Android Market which contains thousands of good apps and games. Therefore, it is totally reasonable to fill up the phone with tons of apps, err… good apps.
So after a few hours of installation and testing, here comes the list of apps (more to come for sure!) that passed my strict tests, in terms of usability and user experience:
Continue reading Day 6 with Nexus S: Apps heaven, no 3G video call #Maxis10