Freeform windows may no longer be the bane of your Android app UX
Over the years, Google has taken baby steps to adapt Android towards bigger screens. With Android 10 came the advent of a generic desktop mode while Android 12L contained a full suite of optimizations for tablets and foldable devices. But with Chromebook owners seem keen on seeking utility from Android apps, no matter how broken they can be with malformed UIs in freeform windows, this just-announced addition to Android Studio sounds well overdue.
The Chrome OS team is getting developers excited about emulating their projects with the new Desktop Android Virtual Device on the upcoming Electric Eel release of Android Studio — we’re still looking at Dolphin Canary 9 on the preview releases page as of press time.
The Android 12-based virtual desktop will let users see how their app behaves when called upon to resize at different states, operate with other apps in multi-window mode, render notifications, and draw activity toggles from the taskbar.
With Google seeing a 50% increase in Android app use on Chrome OS over the past year and two-thirds of Chromebook-toting Android Police readers using them at least occasionally, this will be yet another surface for app makers to worry about on a regular basis, especially with game publishers who want a piece of Google Play Games on PC.
But hey, knowing is half the problem. The new AVD is part of the other half.
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