Google released it’s newest operating system – the much awaited 4.0 called Ice Cream Sandwich at the Unpacked 2011 Event over in Hong Kong, China.
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich has a huge amount of new features and updates, including a new locking screen, the Speech-To-Text, Face Unlock and more (check out the article on our website to find out about all the features of the Ice Cream Sandwich). The new user interface looks a lot like the 3.0 Honeycomb, but there are some changes even there. A good quality of life feature is that you can now access the notification screen from the lock screen and also the notification screen features a built-in music player (how nice!).
Along with the release of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, Google has also released the full SDK for Android 4.0. The new SDK will allow all developers to jump into all the new APIs and features of the new Ice Cream Sandwich Operating System. Here are some of the new features and APIs:
- A new unified UI toolkit to help developers match ICS’s new look and feel, including a new requirement for hardware-accelerated 2D drawing for UI effects on Android 4.0 devices. That includes a new “Theme.holo” theme that developers can use to guarantee a consistent UI across different devices (in other words, if a developer uses this theme, an OEM can’t change the look and feel of the app).
- Massively expanded tools for tracking and managing network usage, letting users disable background data for certain apps and set limits on data usage.
- New social APIs for plugging into ICS’s integrated People app. Notably, we didn’t see Facebook listed during the Ice Cream Sandwich unveiling, so the ball could be in its court to add integration with ICS.
- Support for integrating the Android Beam.
- Support for Wi-Fi Direct for peer-to-peer file sharing, which Google describes as even more robust than the Mac’s AirDrop feature.
- Improved support for stylus and mouse/cursor input (including hover events for both!), which could be useful for expanding Android in new form factors.
- Guide: Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Features
- Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Coming To Nexus S And Possibly To Other Gingerbread Phones
- Android Ice Cream Sandwich To Include A Photo Editor
- Samsung Unveiled Galaxy Nexus With Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
- Sony Ericsson’s 2011 Xperia Smartphones To Receive Android 4.0 Update In 2012