It is rumored that Google could be toying with the idea of changing the navigation buttons of Android N to be released later this year.
It is possible that users could be seeing these changes on the Marlin and the Sailfish Nexus devices that will be launched this year. The changes may also appear in many other devices that use the stock navigating bar of Android N.
After the introduction of the Material Design, Google has made changes to many other aspects, such as the logo, affecting the looks to quite some degree. Many of the changes were noticeable in Android, with the software keys receiving an aesthetic overhaul in the Lollipop version.
Tweaking the Keys
However, Google has continued to stick on to its by now recognizable navigating buttons, such as the triangle, the circle and the square shaped ones. Normally, in any Android device, the software keys used for navigating are in the above shapes. With the Android Lollipop version, there were some aesthetic changes and improvements. However, the latest rumors about Android N suggest that all this could change. The circle button for Home could be receiving specific attention. Instead of merely outlining the button with a line, it will come with solid color inside it.
Home Button – Animation Features
According to a reliable source, the new Home button on Android N will animate when it is long pressed in order to invoke the feature Google Now on Tap. The different colors expand in accordance with the corresponding direction and begin to file out in a horizontal way. This is quite difficult to visualize, but there is no GIF so we cannot see exactly what is being done. However, the bottom line is that there are some animation features.
It is not clear whether all the Nexus devices can be updated to the new button style appearing in Android N or whether it will be limited to devices being released in 2016. Also, it is unlikely to see the exact design seen in the Android N on any other phone, apart from a Nexus. The Nexus devices are Google’s flagship phones and they are powered by the latest Android version. It is not even clear whether all the devices that use Android N will have these new navigation keys. It is not even known whether the new keys will even be implemented.
Modifications in Design
The new design is not finalized yet and there could be more changes made before the version is released. It could be merely an exploratory attempt and may be dropped soon as well.
There might not be much of a difference in the functional impact due to the new redesigning of the navigation buttons. Redesigns are bound to create controversy among users, especially when there are so many different colors being involved. However, redesigning the home button to give it more animation actually makes sense in case of launching the Now on Tap feature. It brands the particular experience as distinctly Google.
Google’s Navigation Bar Adventure
Google might be experimenting on something to make their Nexus devices stand out from the rest with different software aspects and features.
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