It’s time for an opinion and one that people might disagree – I hate the way Android 12 looks on my Pixel phone. The huge menu list items, the chonky controls, the animations, everything. It’s definitely the look and feel of the Google Pixel, but everything seems very out of place to me. I think this is all ruining the bright (yes, I’m not a dark mode guy) and minimalist feel for Android that Google is giving us on their Pixel phones.
I know Android 12 isn’t nearly done yet and by the time testing and beta is over it could change, but I doubt it will. And I’m not casting a shadow over the Pixel Experience Team here. It’s their product and they can do whatever they want with it, but this time it’s just stupid. At least I think it’s stupid, YMMV.
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If you don’t feel what I’m saying here, that’s cool. Different strokes and everything that applies. If you don’t have one idea What I’m talking about and have Android 12 DP on a Pixel phone open the settings menu and scroll up. Then keep scrolling and check out this wave animation. Boing.
Source: Alex Dobie / Android Central
When you add in the weird app splash effect and new minimization animation (although this is pretty cool on its own), plus the extra spacing and gigantic controls, you have the Pixel’s boring but efficient software with some additional effects out of it. And I definitely don’t dig it.
Android doesn’t have a standard “look” as phone manufacturers can do whatever they want with the user interface.
But it’s not all bad news because when it comes to the best Android phones, manufacturers like Samsung are going to turn the basics that Google added – like splash-loading animations – into something that fits a little better. That’s the beauty of Android, and one of its flaws: companies can change most of it if they use it.
We have all seen this. Grab an Android phone, then switch to another made by a different manufacturer. Things will look and feel very different. Sometimes we love the “Skins” manufacturers that are based on Android. Other times we don’t love it that much. But it was there from the start (well, almost) and it won’t change.
These changes are often more than skin deep, however, and this is where things can be causing a problem. If a company like Samsung or Xiaomi uses the code offered by Google and then tries to change the look, it doesn’t just affect the colors and animations. Google also doesn’t use Android as written, although it generally keeps everything in its original place when it comes to settings, menus, and shortcuts.
Companies like Samsung are really good at building a cohesive interface.
Some people consider this a bad thing, and when it took Samsung a year or more to make these changes to the latest version of Android, it was hard to argue. Nowadays, the companies that make our phones have their teams set up and waiting for simple updates is mostly a thing of the past. Unless you bought a Motorola phone.
There are times when it’s good too. If you’re not a fan of what you saw in the UI section of Android 12, this is one of those times. Samsung will include splash animations and fancy new ways to jump around, but it will be some time before this new feast for the eyes goes with something that goes well with Samsung’s One user interface. Even companies like OnePlus, who keep the software on their phones pretty close to Android, will do a little more with what Google has to offer here.
Source: Alex Dobie / Android Central
What makes Android phones different is also what makes Android great.
As I mentioned earlier, this is what makes Android different and great. Instead of a uniform approach, we have many options when it comes to the software on our smartphones. There’s the minimalism of the pixel (complete with bouncy bounces and extremely wide volume controls) or the exaggerated look and feel of Xiaomi. Even Huawei, which no longer makes Google-based Android phones, can use the same base code and use Huawei-ify to their heart’s content.
I still love what I see in Android 12 and think it will bring some great changes to how we chat with friends and how we can better manage our privacy. I’ll even get used to what the Pixel team did with the UI eventually. But I have a feeling we’ll see Samsung do better.