Google releases checklist for increasing quality of tablet apps

If you own an Android tablet, you must have come across a lot of apps that aren’t fully optimised for a tablet’s larger screen and hence look oddly stretched or pixellated. It appears Google has also noticed this anomaly and has come to the rescue with a Tablet App Quality Checklist that’s designed to help developers make better tablet apps. Google announced in a blog post about the checklist that it would be pushing tablet apps in Google Play through a series of new app collections that highlight apps for tablet users.

The checklist mainly focuses on helping developers easily port their existing smartphone apps to tablets while making the apps look and feel good. The checklist includes a number of key focus areas for building apps that are a great experience on tablets, including points for optimising layout for “large” (7-inch) and “xlarge” (10-inch) screens; taking advantage of the extra screen space available on tablets; and using icons and other assets designed for tablet screens.

The Google Nexus 7 unveiled

Google pushing developers to make prettier apps for tablets


The checklist also has points that’ll help developers make apps look more attractive by adjusting font sizes and touch targets for tablet screens, optimising code, leaving out hardware features that might not be available on tablets, and other UI features. Links are included with each point to help explain the various terms used and procedures developers can go about.

Additionally, Google states in the post that they’ll be sharing more tablet development tips this week on the Android Developers Google+ page, along with a bunch of other tablet related YouTube broadcasts, interviews and features.

It makes sense for Google to ask developers to make better-looking and optimised apps for tablets. Popular 7-inch tablets like the Kindle Fire and Google’s own Nexus 7 have seen their sales figures growing steadily, and the market share of Android tablets is increasing by the day. Statistics released by Google show that while the number of Android smartphones is quite high, Android tablets are slowly catching up: the number of Android devices with ‘large’ or ‘xlarge’ screens – 7 inches or more – account for 10.7 percent of all devices running Android. With over 500 million Android devices activated until September, which accounts for quite a large number of Android tablets .

The popularity of Android tablets might help developers with testing apps for tablets too. It is possible that most developers previously opted for making apps for smartphones as they probably owned one or had access to a device. Since tablets weren’t so popular at the time, developers without access to tablets would have no idea how their apps might look on large 7-inch or 10-inch screens.

Published Date: Oct 09, 2012 03:04 pm | Updated Date: Oct 09, 2012 03:04 pm