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Android 4 Resource CenterMinimize

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Android 4 User and Developer Features

Android Developer’s Channel on YouTube

The video, “Google and Samsung, a Look at What’s New from Android.” This hour-long presentation shows you the new Android 4 operating system and the Galaxy Nexus device.

Android 4 in Action

This video shows you Android 4 in action, demonstrating many of the exciting new features.

Android 4 New Developer Features

New Android 4 developer features include the Social API, Calendar API, Visual Voicemail API, Accessibility API, text-to-speech API, modular sharing widget, new camera and media effects, OpenGL ES texture views, security improvements and more.

Android 4 User Features

New Android 4 user features include a refined user interface, improved multitasking, home screen folders and “favorites tray,” resizable widgets, improved keyboard, better spell checking and the ability to manage your data usage. You can use facial recognition to unlock the device and Android Beam to share apps, contacts and more between NFC-enabled devices (Near Field Communications). Without unlocking the device, you can go directly to the camera, pull down the notifications menu and respond by text to incoming calls quickly.  Android 4 also has improved accessibility features. The explore-by-touch mode enables you to navigate even when you can’t see the screen. Using third-party apps, you can connect your Android phone to Bluetooth Health Device Profile (HDP) devices such as sensors in hospitals, fitness centers and more.

30 Awesome New Features in Android 4

The article, “30 Awesome new features in Android 4 'Ice Cream Sandwich,'” by Tim Conneally summarizes many of the best new features in Android 4.

What's New in Android 4

The article, "Google unveils what's new in Android 4 'Ice Cream Sandwich': Unified mobile OS for tablets and smartphones clones some iOS features and focuses on a slicker UI and new developer APIs," by Galen Gruman.

Android 4’s Five Best New User Features

The article, “Android 4.0's Five Best New Features for Users,” by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols. The five highlighted new features include better user interface, better applications, speech transcription, faster web browsing and data-use monitoring.

New UI and Core Features

The article, “New UI and Core Features in Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Overview,” by Quentyn Kennemer, provides a summary and images of some of the best new users features in Android 4.

The article, “Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich – All New Core Applications Overview,” by Chris Chavez, discusses the changes to the browser, Gmail, Calendar, Camera, Settings (Data Usage Control), Gallery, Contacts and more.

Face Recognition

The video, “Unlock Android 4.0 with your face,” discusses several of the new Android 4 features and in particular, the new facial recognition feature for unlocking your Android device.

Android 4 Tour!

The video, “Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Tour,” shows you the new Android 4 running on the emulator.

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Android 4 Devices

Galaxy Nexus

A short video introducing the Galaxy Nexus—the first Android 4 tablet developed by Samsung and Google.

Review of the Galaxy Nexus

The review, “First Impressions: Galaxy Nexus & Android 4.0,” by Rob Jackson. Includes a video demo of the device.

Droid Razr

The article, “Droid Razr won’t have long to wait for Android 4.0,” by Will Shankin. Compares the new Razr (which will be available in early 2012) to the Galaxy Nexus.

Galaxy Nexus and Android 4 vs. iPhone 4s

This article compares the new Galaxy Nexus smartphone running Android 4 to the new iPhone 4s running iOS 5.

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Google Android 4 Downloads and Resources

Android 4.0 Platform

Provides a detailed overview of the new Android 4 platform including revisions, the APIs, built-in apps, emulator skins and more.

Android Download

Download the Android 4 SDK.

Android Platform Differences Report

Check out the list of differences between Android platforms. You can filter the list by package, class, constructor, method or field. You can also filter the list by additions, changes or removals.

Developer Resources

Find Android sample code, articles, tutorials, forums, tips and FAQs.

Sample Code

Numerous examples with sample code demonstrating the various Android APIs and features.

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Updating Your Apps to Android 4

New APIs in Ice Cream Sandwich

The blog, “New Public APIs in ICS,” by Tim Bray, discusses how some of your apps—particularly those that access the Calendar app—may be affected by Android 4 and how to update your apps. He also discusses the new text-to-speech APIs that are replacing the old C++ API.

Updating App Widgets

Shows you how to updated your App Widgets to Android 4.

Accessibility: Test-to-Speech

Demonstrates how to create a text-to-speech engine using the RobotSpeechEngine, CheckVoiceData and RobotSpeakSettings.

The API Demos page includes links to several Android 4 demos including SwitchPreference, ShareActionProvider, collapsible action view, custom fragment animations, service bindings, full screen UI modes, stylus and hover support and Switch widget.

Spell Checker

Provides a sample of the new SpellCheckerService APIs in Android 4.

Sample Sync Adapter

Shows you how an app communicates with services in the cloud and then synchs the information with data stored locally. The new Android 4 features include syncing and viewing contact groups, handling the "invite" intent and more.

Wi-Fi Direct Demo

Sample app shows you how to do peer-to-peer network connections using the new Android 4.0 Wi-Fi Direct APIs. The app shows you how to use the API to discover peers, connect and transfer files.

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Following the Android Team

Android Developers Blog

Check out the Android Developers blog for the latest Android announcements.

Android in Twitter!/android

Follow the Android team on Twitter for the latest news, tips and tricks.

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Deitel Android Resources

Android for Programmers: An App-Driven Approach

This book gives you everything you’ll need to start developing great Android apps quickly and getting them published on Android Market. The book uses an app-driven approach—each new technology is discussed in the context of 16 fully tested Android apps, complete with syntax coloring, code walkthroughs and sample outputs.

Developing Android Apps: Before You Begin

Provides a list of hardware and software requirements, plus instructions on installing the Java Development Kit (JDK), the Eclipse IDE, the Android SDK, the ADT Plugin for Eclipse, and the Android Platform. Shows you how to create Android Virtual Devices (AVDs) for use in the Android Emulator. Also provides a list of other IDEs for developing Android apps.

Android Resource Center

Check out the many other resources listed in our original Android Resource Center.

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eWeek Article on Tastiest Features of Android 4--Ice Cream Sandwich

A slideshow of some of the key new Android 4 features.

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Update :: November 15, 2018