Google says Fragmentation? We’ll take care of it

March 4, 2011
9

Android and its fragmentation has long been the discussion of many of its competitors as well as our own users. As much as we'd all like to agree, or disagree, there is some fragmentation that we all can at least agree on. With so many types, models, screen sizes, and CPU speeds being some large ones. Personally this has never been a large issue for me as most games and apps have always worked just about perfect. You can read about Angry Birds creators Rovio on Fragmentation. On Thursday Google came out with some information that will soon change all of that. The Fragments API.

Google has just released a new Fragments API, it is available now through the SDK Updater, it's called the "Android Compatibility Package". This is a very big step for Google and Android, as fragmentation has been a topic of argument since the beginning. On the Google developer blog they note that this API is a part of Honeycomb, and does not help developers that build for older versions of Android.

They have just released a library that will now also help applications that are compatible with Android 1.6 or later to take advantage of the Fragments API to make them also be tablet-compatible. Developers can start on this right away, Sounds to me like that knock on tablet app numbers Steve Job's mentioned a few days ago, will soon be very wrong.

[via Android Developers]


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  • Honeycomb = priceless

    This with Android’s ability to scale apps properly will help developers make apps that are screen-size agnostic–using the full area of the screen intelligently without having to make an app for small screens and one for large/tablet screens. Once again Android comes up with a more intelligent way to do things ;)

  • Honeycomb = priceless

    This with Android’s ability to scale apps properly will help developers make apps that are screen-size agnostic–using the full area of the screen intelligently without having to make an app for small screens and one for large/tablet screens. Once again Android comes up with a more intelligent way to do things ;)

  • Anonymous

    This is fine and all, but will this help game companies pumping out games for one chipset or the other? the Android fragmentation issue not really that big of a deal, but spec’d games that will only run on certain hardware is the BIG issue as we all know that Android could become a HUGE gaming platform as well as a close, VERY close PC replacement(I use my PC only 15% of the time now that I have and Android phone). Google needs to get this issue taken care of soon or we will start to see game companies drop off because only so many manufactures/chipsets made a sale and that is the only platform their game runs on. I’ve said it before Google needs a universal API set for games so manufactures stop low level coding for specific hardware.

  • Anonymous

    This is fine and all, but will this help game companies pumping out games for one chipset or the other? the Android fragmentation issue not really that big of a deal, but spec’d games that will only run on certain hardware is the BIG issue as we all know that Android could become a HUGE gaming platform as well as a close, VERY close PC replacement(I use my PC only 15% of the time now that I have and Android phone). Google needs to get this issue taken care of soon or we will start to see game companies drop off because only so many manufactures/chipsets made a sale and that is the only platform their game runs on. I’ve said it before Google needs a universal API set for games so manufactures stop low level coding for specific hardware.

  • Anonymous

    This is fine and all, but will this help game companies pumping out games for one chipset or the other? the Android fragmentation issue not really that big of a deal, but spec’d games that will only run on certain hardware is the BIG issue as we all know that Android could become a HUGE gaming platform as well as a close, VERY close PC replacement(I use my PC only 15% of the time now that I have and Android phone). Google needs to get this issue taken care of soon or we will start to see game companies drop off because only so many manufactures/chipsets made a sale and that is the only platform their game runs on. I’ve said it before Google needs a universal API set for games so manufactures stop low level coding for specific hardware.

  • Anonymous

    Before they had a history, I had some faith Google would deal with fragmentation. Now that android has been out several years, I think they have a history of not dealing with it. They have been saying its “not a problem” or we will be “dealing with it” the whole time.

    Lets figure this out and deal with it once and for all, Google!

  • http://twitter.com/lgtspecb Stewart Gateley

    The fact that they call it “fragments” is more of a kick in the balls to iFanbois than anything else, as it has nothing to do with “fragmentation” as it is known today. It is also not a fix for “fragmentation”, it is only here to help alleviate future problems.

    Fragments allow you to design apps using independent blocks, legos in a sense, then position them differently depending on the screen size, resolution and/or orientation.

    This helps non-tablet apps work better on tablets and it lets tablet apps work on phones. They have back ported the API to 1.6+ so that people can start writing tablet optimized apps today without having to maintain separate codebases for a non-tablet app. This only affects new or modified apps, and only fixes the problems that tablets create for devs. Old non-tablet optimized apps will still be scaled, if properly written, or be miniature on the screen if not.

  • dwinsmith

    Sounds like a way to make Android apps suck more. Why can’t they seem to pull of consistent quality?

  • Sbarney

    The Fragments API has nothing to do with Android fragmentation. You really need to get a better grasp on the news you’re reporting. I am unsubscribing from this blog.