Bye-bye, Android Menu button

Bye-bye, Android Menu buttonOne of the things I struggled to get used to when I first embraced Android was the bloomin’ Menu button; so many hidden options! I still rely on it to do simple things like view my call history.

However, scribbling on the Android Developer Blog, lead tech writer Scott Main tells us to Say Goodbye to the Menu Button.

As Scott explains, all Android devices prior to Honeycomb Android 3.0, the tablet-specific version of Google’s OS, included a dedicated Menu button.

However, Honeycomb removed the reliance upon physical buttons and instead shifted focus to the on-screen Action Bar, and that’s the way it’ll be with all Android devices in future.

Scott writes: “In order to provide the most intuitive and consistent user experience in your apps, you should migrate your designs away from using the Menu button and toward using the action bar.

“This isn’t a new concept — the action bar pattern has been around on Android even before Honeycomb — but as Ice Cream Sandwich rolls out to more devices, it’s important that you begin to migrate your designs to the action bar in order to promote a consistent Android user experience.

“Not only should your apps stop relying on the hardware Menu button, but you should stop thinking about your activities using a “menu button” at all. Your activities should provide buttons for important user actions directly in the action bar (or elsewhere on screen). Those that can’t fit in the action bar end up in the action overflow.”

Interesting stuff. Too bad I'm about to make the leap to Windows Phone 7, "LOL". I crack me up sometimes.

Read more about: Android

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4 comments

Treab  Jan. 28, 2012 at 18:42

Too bad I'm about to make the leap to Windows Phone 7

you say lol but im not so sure... has Jan persuaded you go buy a Nokia 800? You do have a thing about phones with bad batteries after all

dam predictive text

blizzard7  Jan. 28, 2012 at 21:06

Too bad I'm about to make the leap to Windows Phone 7

you say lol but important not so sure... has Jan persuaded you go buy a Nokia 800? You do have a think about phones with bad batteries after all


Sorry Treab, but your mistakes are funnier than your joke. :p (_;)

Treab  Jan. 29, 2012 at 00:37

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 29, 2012 at 10:49

Blah, blah...
What the guy Scotty says is this: instead of one menu button there'll be loadsa "options" and user "control" - I.e. many menu buttons.

Quite a few ICS reviewers actually bemoan that ICS's new Menu system actually is less intuitive and more "all over the place".
I don't KNOW because I haven't used ICS, yet. But to me it sounds like Fragmentation, Sub-Section B... Even up to and including Gingerbread not all Android devices have the same "Settings" structure - Sony Ericsson and others even felt the need to switch around the order of the 3 (or 4) hardware buttons.
So - is this gonna make things better? It didn't improve Scott's writing about the change, that's for sure :p

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