Back in November, Google updated its new design guidelines for the first time, adding guidance on the navigation drawer and launcher icons, and - happily - a "what's new" section, which it said would serve as a place to explain future updates to the guidelines.
Yesterday, Google gave the guidelines another sizable update, adding an entire section to guide devs and designers on when and how to use floating action buttons, along with new guidelines for data tables, overall app structure, and guidance on important units and measurements, plus a lot more. Here's Google's full list of changes.
The April 2015 release of the material design spec includes the following new sections:
Additional significant content updates include:
- Typography adds further guidance on style and line height for dense and tall languages
- Cards includes more specs for laying out actions and content
- Dialogs contains additional layout guidance
- Tabs adds guidance around label content and more complete sizing specs
- Scrolling techniques adds guidance for overlapping content
Where Google's last update to the guidelines seemed to be about filling holes, this update is positioned as a response to the community, giving more specific guidance on things that seem to have arisen as points of interest in material design. Read More
While there has yet to be a major smartphone announced with a USB Type C connector, we know they're coming. As are tablets, laptops, and pretty much every other kind of USB gadget you can imagine. This is our quick guide to USB Type C (and USB 3.1, which are actually not the same thing), which will go over the benefits of the new standard, as well as discuss the kind of cables you'll probably want to buy in the next couple of years as it is adopted.
Why are we switching to a new port configuration? Are my old cables going to be useless? Read More
It's been, what, five weeks since Google announced Android 5.1? In all that time the update has still not arrived on many of Mountain View's Nexus devices. But at least one more is joining the 5.1 club today, and it's a little unexpected—the LTE Nexus 7 2013. No, the WiFi version still hasn't popped up.
Readers in France and Germany, head on over to your local Google Store if you're looking for an Android-powered set-top box. The Nexus Player, the only Android TV device widely available even six months after the introduction of the platform, is now on sale in your respective countries. Well, sort of: it's "coming soon" with a price of 99 Euro (only about 5% more than the US price). According to Google's hardware availability page, it should go on sale at any moment.
Hong Kong readers, you get something a little more exciting. While you don't have access to the Nexus Player yet, you can finally buy a Nexus 6 without importing it from somewhere else. Read More
In early 2014, Microsoft started providing Office 365 users with the option to secure their accounts with multi-factor authentication. When signing in, folks have to respond to a phone call, text message, or phone notification after entering their password. The feature has since worked on PCs and smartphones, but when Office came to Android tablets, support was absent.
According to the identical changelogs accompanying the latest versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for tablets, that has changed.
- Multi-factor authentication for Office 365 accounts.
- Support of Mobile Application Management with Microsoft Intune. This enables IT administrators to (1) restrict copying of company data from managed Office apps to personal apps, (2) enable app level encryption, (3) enforce an app level PIN, and (4) selectively wipe managed apps and related data on a device.
Wireless charging is nice. It really is - setting your phone down and picking it back up, without having to plug it in and remove the plug each time, saves you about four seconds. It's one of those "huh, that's neat" bonuses of modern technology that are interesting without being entirely necessary, like headlights that automatically turn themselves on. Duracell, always hoping to make a quick buck on mobile electronics by selling you things you don't need, also thinks that wireless charging is neat. So neat that customers with older or cheaper phones will plug their phone in to get it. Read More