Lollipop, Material Design, and You
With the recent release of Lollipop, there have been many overhauls in terms of design and functionality.
While there were many functionally awesome things added to Lollipop, like filtered and priority notifications, device profiles, and others, we will instead shift our attention to the visual aspects. With the release of Lollipop, Google has decided to implement a set of visual guidelines and principles called
Material Design. The purpose of Material Design is to give not only the Android OS UI a more unified and cohesive feel, but also the apps that developers make and put on the App Store. The goal is a unified feel across both OS and apps, which is an idea lovingly ripped off from Apple’s iOS and their attention to design.
The first thing you may notice about the design is that it is very minimalist and uses white and empty space to an effect. This makes the UI appear more clean. You may also notice that there are more circular shapes. Using circular icons in a screen dominated by rectangles can be very refreshing and less restraining. Many icons in Lollipop now use circular frames.
Depending on your taste, you may be happy or sad with all the empty screen real estate. I personally feel that the spacing and minimalist design is done tastefully and successfully.
Another thing we can look at is the actions. All the movements and stylized motion of the new SDK is fluid, quick and responsive. Lots of circles also being utilized there. When you select an item from, say, the notification menu or settings menu, a smaller dark grey circle slowly expands to fill the white space of the list element.
Other aspects of the Material Design guidelines include utilizing color schemes that pop and aren’t overwhelming. It is recommended to pick two bolder colors and one accent color for the theme of an app, and Lollipop also adheres to this standard.
Notifications now sort themselves and stack if there are too many. Everything is kept clean in the UI, and minimized if not necessary.
The new OS is stylish, sophisticated, smart, and beautiful. It organizes things very well and makes things easy to access – camera can be accessed at lock screen, settings can be found in the pull down bar of the notification menu, Google Now is only a swipe away.
All of these things make for a clean and beautiful iteration of Android.