Several days ago, I started a series of rumor posts on my personal Google+ account discussing some Android rumors I felt were interesting enough to share, but didn't feel confident enough yet to do so here on the site. The posts were heavily prefixed with disclaimers that none of them may turn out to be true but that I had a certain level of confidence to talk about them in public unofficially.

Today, I'd like to present rumor #5, which is going straight to Android Police because of the high confidence level.

Disclaimer: No matter the confidence level, there's always a chance product updates, features, and some or all details will be changed or cancelled altogether. As with all rumors, nothing is 100% until it's officially announced.

We do not have possession of any APKs or unreleased devices, so please don't ask for them.

Confidence level

Based on everything I've seen so far, I'm assigning this rumor a score of 9 out of 10. I'm docking a point because I don't know if the final UI will change or not, but that's impossible to say until KitKat is out.

The rumor

The stock Downloads user interface, which has had a Holo Dark background and has been very obviously on the backburner for a while now is getting a long overdue fresh coat of paint.

We're getting:

  • A proper action bar with the Sort button making a jump from the bottom of the screen to the top.
  • Holo Light background color.
  • What looks the ability to select all downloads for easy cleanup which was impossible before - you had to select each download one by one. Actually, now that I've looked at it closer, there is no border that is present in the normal Select All button, so this is probably just a grid view toggle. Bummer.
  • A much cleaner icon you can see in the top left corner.

Unfortunately, at this point I don't know if new sorting options have been added to the two existing ones (size and date), but I can't think of any that would be really necessary here outside of maybe the sort direction.

As you can see, the new UI is consistent with the move to lighter, more easy-on-the-eye colors that we've been seeing from the Android team lately and looks better than ever.


We were sent a screenshot that supports the above rumor and shows the new UI. I'm including the old UI from a Nexus 4 running Android 4.3 for comparison purposes on the right.

wm_kitkat_downloads1 Screenshot_2013-10-08-13-38-38

Left: Android 4.4; right: Android 4.3

Release timeline

I'm expecting the updated UI to be available in Android 4.4 KitKat upon its release.