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Articles Tagged:

share menu

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Share menu changes in Android Q Beta 3: No more app pinning, 8 Direct Share targets instead of 4

We've been very vocal about our irritation with Android's slow, buggy, and inconsistent Share menu. Prior to Android Q's release, we learned that Google was working on fixing it, and we started seeing the fruits of that change in Beta 1 and 2 thanks to a new push system that lets apps show their targets in the menu vs the pull system that was used before. In Q Beta 3, there are two changes to the native Share menu, one of which is a welcome comeback and the second a sad removal.

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[Update: More details in Beta 2] Android Q tries to make the share menu faster, less terrible

Android's share menu has been a bit messy for years, mostly thanks to the slow-loading app-specific targets that appear at the top of the list. In fact, many apps opt to create their own interfaces for sharing, so users don't have to deal with the janky native UI. In Android Q, the default share menu is receiving a facelift, just like Google promised last year.

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Google Photos tries on a new side-scrolling share menu

We've been nothing if not critical of Android's slow and wildly inconsistent share interface, and Google has promised that fixing it is "a priority." In what is likely to be related, updated versions of the UI have started rolling out to a handful of apps in the last month, and the latest to see a taste of something new is Google Photos. Calm your excitement, though, as it's still in limited testing.

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Google has a plan for fixing Android's slow share menu

We'll be honest, we think Android as a whole is pretty swell, but that doesn't mean it couldn't be better. One of our bigger gripes with the platform has been the super slow and laggy share UI, which takes ages to populate even on the latest flagship hardware. Thankfully, according to a recent tweet by Android engineering VP Dave Burke, Google is working on a redesign.

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Android P DP4 trims down the Direct Share targets to 4 instead of 8

It's no secret that we're not the biggest fans of Android's Share menu. A couple of months ago, I wrote an exposé detailing everything that's wrong with it, including its slowness, inconsistency, and the mess that is Direct Share. With Android P Developer Preview 4, which was released yesterday, Google decided to do one thing about it, but it's not what you think: Direct Share targets have been reduced to four.

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Google, please fix Android's slow, bloated share UI

Sharing from one app to another has been a mainstay of Android for years and years. It was one of the features that first drew me to Android: no more copying and pasting, no more having to open Twitter or WhatsApp to send a picture I just saw in my Gallery. Apps could talk to each other and the experience felt cohesive and seamless.

But with time, the Share UI in Android has languished, stuck with the same features and problems. It switched from a vertical list to a grid, it added direct share in Android 6.0 and app pinning in Android 7.0, yet these felt like putting lipstick on a pig: the Share UI remains slow, bloated, convoluted, and if you pay close attention to it, one of the most inconsistent experiences on Android to date.

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PSA: You can pin apps in Android 7.0 Nougat's share menu

It's been a while since we covered specific features of Android 7.0, and it turns out there are a few new-to-Nougat features that people are forgetting about. One of those features is the ability to pin apps in the share menu; even the big boss Artem forgot about this one. If you share things frequently and only use a few options, this could come in handy.

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Android N Feature Spotlight: Apps In The Share Menu Can Be Pinned To The Top Of The List

Sharing works pretty well in Android - the standard "share" command and its collection of APIs allows for easily getting content from one app to another. But if you're anything like most Android users, you have dozens of apps installed that include Share functions, and you're only used to actually using Share in a few of them. Android N has a little feature that makes that interaction much more user-friendly: Share apps can now be pinned to the top of the cross-app menu.

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'Open Link With' Lets Users Quickly Open Links In Alternate Browsers Or Apps

When I'm browsing a comments section on Reddit on the Android version of Chrome, I prefer to open links in a new tab, because opening them directly will make the current page "forget" which threads I've already minimized. But when the links are to a YouTube video, they open in a tab with the mobile version of YouTube, instead of in the dedicated Android app. This little app fixes that: Open Link With allows you to open a web page with any compatible app. It's perfect for quickly switching over to YouTube for that link I opened wrong, or for opening a page in an alternate browser that isn't set to the Android default.

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Android 6.0.1 Fixes The Annoying "Jumping" Behavior Of The Share Menu Caused By Direct Share Contacts

If you're on Android 6.0 and use the share menu regularly, you may have encountered a rather annoying issue with Android's Direct Share feature. The issue arises when the share dialog pops open and the direct share contacts don't load immediately. Instead, the UI loads, you go to tap what you want, and suddenly the direct share contacts appear and all the app share links get pushed down out of view. See the animations below for the Android 6.0 and 6.0.1 behaviors side by side - the broken version is on the left.

 

Left: Android 6.0 behavior. Right: Android 6.0.1 behavior.

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