It's been a couple of years since the Chrome OS UI got any considerable design updates, some of which were polarizing changes that stirred controversy in the Chromebook community. Google has since been steadily updating its core apps and system UI to a more modern Material Design style, including the new Media app and tablet mode experience that rolled out in the Chrome OS Stable channel this year. If there's one component that still feels out of place, it's the login and lock screen—more specifically, the password field. That's changing soon, though, as Google is experimenting with a refreshed text field to make it look more consistent with other system UI elements.
Last year, Google resuscitated its Material Design blog, and the revival was met with a flurry of new posts. The site covers subjects like color, typography, shape, and transitions—all in the Google-y Material style. The blog's latest entry is particularly interesting, revealing an experiment that makes it easy to apply Material Design to a WordPress site.
Fans of Google's so-called Material Design should take note of today's news. AP alum Liam Spradlin is resuscitating Google's Material blog as its new Editor. Today alone, eight new posts were published (more than went up in the last two years), covering subjects from color and typography to shape and transitions, written in terms both developers and design enthusiasts can appreciate and use — ideally, to help make better apps.
For almost as long as we can remember, Google Groups has paid almost zero attention to its interface. Things turned around for the desktop version of the service back in March when it got its first design refresh in years, but the mobile site was still left stuck with an even older and more dated UI. That’s going to change pretty soon, as the company has announced a Material Design treatment for Google Groups in mobile browsers, bringing it on par with many of its mainstream web apps.
While there are a ton of apps that let you make a nice clean PDF file from your physical documents, or save a digital copy of your receipts, why dig through third-party apps when there's a scanner built right into Drive? For one, the Google app comes pre-installed in nearly all Android phones, so you don’t need to download anything extra, and it’s a one-stop solution to scan and directly upload the file to Drive. Following the Drive app's Material makeover, Google is now introducing a similar iconography for its scanning interface.
It seems like barely anyone still talks about Google Groups, but with the company's social network shuttered, it's the only way developers can privately test new Android apps. The service is generally often utilized by coders as an alternative to Slack. However, Groups' design can't compare to its competitors or even Google's other web services anymore, which is probably why the company has decided to start testing an interface revamp as part of a limited beta, slated to be fully deployed later this year.
The Indianized version of Google Pay has cornered the largest chunk of India’s UPI market, piggybacking the username-based P2P payment system. Launched as Tez, Google rebranded the app to Pay following the global consolidation of its payment solutions, though the app retained its distinct functionality that contrasts with its stateside counterpart. About two years into its existence, the app is now getting a design change under Google’s refreshed material guidelines, tidying up some of its UI elements.
Google occasionally revamps its apps and services, and there are invariably some people who strenuously object to the change. Such was the case in 2017 when Google deployed a material makeover for YouTube. Some users have been stubbornly sticking with the old UI this whole time, but Google plans to force all the stragglers to migrate next month.
Google has been tweaking its popular apps over the past few months to align them with the refreshed Material guidelines. After showing signs of a refresh not too long ago, Google’s dialer and messaging apps are now picking up the new outlined icons with their latest beta releases. These rather subtle changes merely replace the existing filled iconography and do not introduce any new functionality whatsoever.