On my previous blog about the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, Android made the Ice cream sandwich stand out. What is the deal with ICS? Here is a list I made of what Ice Cream Sandwich has to offer.
Roboto, UI that is optimized for hi-res screen, and Honeycomb -ish software navigation buttons (Back, Home, Switch) that appear in all apps.
Notification tab - Users can now swipe to remove specific items, see live updates from apps, and control music playback- Just like Cyanogenmod.
Home screen / Launcher - Users can now create home screen folders by placing apps on top of each other, which automatically creates the folder (which can also be put in a dock). Like Honeycomb and other 3rd party launchers, users can also uninstall apps directly from the launcher.
Honeycomb -ish Resizable widgets – Just like Honeycomb, users can resize widgets, most of which have been updated to reflect the new UI.
Lock screen -access notifications or camera straight from the home screen. It also features a Face Unlock feature to unlock the device. Cool!
Better keyboard - in-line spell check and the ability to install third-party dictionaries bundled with improved performance. Tagalog keyboard anyone?
Improved Voice Input to text - better conversion of words to text
Monitor data usage - built in 3g watchdog.
Audible feedback – The “Explore-by-touch” mode will provide feedback when a user hovers over an area-for physically disabled users.
People – There’s a Windows Phone 7-like collection of your contacts that links with social networks and displays updates, as well as provide the many options for communicating with them. Message, email, tweet or chat directly from here.
Unified Calendar - allows 3rd party apps to add events to the calendar with pinch-to-zoom on the calendar, which allowed more information on an event or day to be shown.
Visual voicemail - You’ve seen it in 3rd parties, now you can see it built-in. Voice transcriptions (speech to text) and a list of people who have left messages will be displayed within the phone app.
Camera app – Panoramic views, Stabilized zoom, and Continuous focus. Plus the “Zero shutter lag exposure” which takes the picture as soon as you press it.
Gallery app and photo editing- Photo editing has also been included and the gallery app is just like Honeycomb. Better sharing features, easier album organization and live tile gallery widget.
Screenshots - Yup. No root required. Its native.
Better browser - instantly sync Google Chrome bookmarks between desktop and mobile with performance improvements. Native Phone to Chrome app.
Android Beam for NFC – Aside from mobile payments, NFC will also be used to initiate data transfers between different phones. Just like Bump It app/infrared but better.
Wi-Fi Direct and Bluetooth HDP - from what I understood from this, wifi+FTP+Ad-Hoc in steroids.
Other updates from Dan Morrill's Google+ post. He's an Android Developer.
- Updated Settings We’ve seriously revamped the Settings screen organization. Items are arranged much better now, and it’s easier and usually fewer actions to find what you are looking for.
- Disabling Apps ICS adds the ability to disable an app outright. Don’t like an app that came preinstalled? Disable it! Its resources never run and its launcher icon is gone until you re-enable it. (This doesn’t free up any space — it can’t, since pre-installed apps are included in the read-only system storage. But it does put them “out of sight, out of mind.”)
- Camera Controls The camera controls have been redesigned and are easier to find and mess around with.
- Improved Download Manager It looks better and is easier to find and use, and to see and clear any downloads you might have.
- Support for Encryption for Phones Honeycomb added full-device encryption, but ICS brings it to phones. Audio Effects
- There’s a new audio effects API. Nuff said,