Android`s Menu Button To be Replaced by the Action Bar
The menu button on Google's Android is all
but dead and is to be replaced permanently by the action bar. That's the
message from Scott Main, lead tech writer for Developer android.com, who has posted an article advising Android developers to change their ways.
"Honeycomb removed the reliance on physical buttons, and introduced
the ActionBar class as the standard solution to make actions from the
user options immediately visible and quick to invoke," he wrote. "In
order to provide the most intuitive and consistent user experience in
your apps, you should migrate your designs away from using the Menu button and toward using the action bar."
The menu button has already been ditched on
some Android devices, such as the Ice Cream Sandwich packing Samsung
Galaxy Nexus and, going forward, Google wants just three buttons on
offer; back, home, and recent apps.
The action bar, that will now see more, er, action is a dedicated
area that identifies the options available to the user on specific apps.
It sits up top and will mean that Fandroids will need to get used to a
new way of interacting with their favourite apps.
If the tasks in hand are too much for the action bar to take, users
will see an overflow button on the bottom bar (three dots in a vertical
"This might seem like splitting hairs over terminology, but the name
action overflow promotes a different way of thinking," explained Main.
"Instead of thinking about a menu that serves as a catch-all for
various user options, you should think more about which user options
you want to display on the screen as actions. Those that don't need to
be on the screen can overflow off the screen."