Google has just announced the availability of the full SDK for the newly released Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system, offering developers the possibility to download it through the SDK Manager.With the new SDK on their computers, developers can start building and publishing applications against API level 16, taking full advantage of the new APIs that were packed inside the Jelly Bean OS.
Additionally, Google made available the SDK Tools revision 20.0.1 and NDK revision 8b, both of which come with a series of bug fixes packed inside.
“For many people, their first taste of Jelly Bean will be on the beautiful Nexus 7,” Nick Butcher, Android engineer, notes in a post on Android Developers.
“While most applications will run just fine on Nexus 7, who wants their app to be just fine? Here are some tips for optimizing your application to make the most of this device.”
For those out of the loop, we should note that the Nexus 7 tablet PC comes to the market with a 7-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 600 x 960 pixel resolution.
Jelly Bean works great on this device, mainly due to the fact that Google optimized the OS to fit multiple types of screens, ranging from smartphones to large tablet PCs.
This means that the platform will scale depending on screen size and resolution, and that it will also scale apps to fit them. Basically, developers need to do very little to have their apps fully compatible with the new device.
“We actively discourage you from rushing out and creating new assets at this density; Android will scale your existing assets for you. In fact the entire Jelly Bean OS contains only a single tvdpi asset, the remainder are scaled down from hdpi assets,” Nick Butcher continues.
Devs can ensure that their hdpi assets can be easily scaled for tvdpi through taking care of the 9-patch images. They need to be created correctly so that they could be scaled down effectively, Nick Butcher notes.
Some advice for developers includes:
- Make sure that any stretchable regions are at least 2x2 pixels in size, else they risk disappearing when scaled down.
- Give one pixel of extra safe space in the graphics before and after stretchable regions else interpolation during scaling may cause the color at the boundaries to change.
Additional info on what developers need to do to ensure that their applications will fit Nexus 7’s screen can be found in the aforementioned blog post. Links for downloading the updated SDK are available below.
Download Android 4.1 SDK for Windows
Download Android NDK for Windows
Download Android 4.1 SDK for Mac
Download Android NDK for Mac