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Android 3.0 Honeycomb previewed

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Android 3.0 Honeycomb previewed

Google has released a preview of the forthcoming Android 3.0 platform update, giving us our best look yet at what we can expect when it starts hitting slates later this year.

honeycomb ui

Posted on the Android Developers site, the extensive sneak peak at the SDK for the tablet optimised version of the operating system makes much of what Google dubs a “holographic” user interface, which is specifically designed for slates’ large touchscreens.

As well as larger icons, we’re also in line for a system bar for “quick access to notifications” and “system status”, which will work “across the system and in all applications”. The ever-present feature will also offer “soft navigation buttons” and is intended as a “key touchpoint” for users.

A revamped browser, meanwhile, will feature multiple tabs and better zooming to improve the web experience on non-mobile sites. App management is going to be made easier, too, with the introduction of an action bar across the top of the display that provides access to contextual options, navigation and widgets.

gingerbread copy paste

Other improvements include a redesigned keyboard, a new drag-based copy and paste method, plus encrypted storage and password expiration to keep sensitive business data safe.

Google has yet to confirm if the update will ever appear on Android phones of whether it’s tablets-only. However, even if it does, it’s a safe bet that it'll be reserved for higher end devices.

For a full breakdown of what Honeycomb will bring to the Android platform, head to Google’s Android Developers site.

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