Is Android lacking when it comes to tablet optimized apps?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Dolorian, Oct 22, 2012.

  1. macrumors 65816

    Dolorian

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    #1
    As someone who is planning to buy a Nexus 7 (or 10 depending on what Google presents in their upcoming event), I am wondering if when I get the tablet I wil end up using smartphone apps scaled to fit my tablet for the most part as opposed to apps that are made and optimized for tablets.

    I keep hearing this complain about how Android lacks when it comes to tablet optimized apps and how iOS has the clear advantage here. So, how are things really? Is there a serious lack of tablet ready apps or do most of the common apps already have a tablet version?

    What has been your experience as Android tablet user?
     
  2. macrumors 604

    cynics

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #2
    I use an Android tablet like a computer. For example I use the web browser for forums instead of tapatalk and for Facebook. The rest of my apps scale to look very good (games) and there are tablet versions for the rest of my stuff like my podcast app.
     
  3. macrumors 68030

    ReallyBigFeet

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    #3
    Impossible to answer without you narrowing down the category.

    For example, if category is note-taking via text input, then something like Evernote is available. If music composition is your thing, it's going to hard to top GarageBand on the iPad.

    So the answer could be quite different depending on your use cases.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2012
    #4
    All apps scale to the tablet size without any problem. But generally speaking, most apps do not take advantage of the larger screen. They are stretched out versions of the phone apps.
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    LOLZpersonok

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
    Location:
    Calgary, Canada
    #5
    I couldn't say. I have a really awful Android tablet I purchased for $100...It's a no-name brand thing and the hardware it has really limits Android's capabilities. But the Apps that I do have don't seem very optimized though.
     
  6. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    #6
    Yes. Yes. Yes.

    That's why I haven't bought an android tablet yet, even though the nexus 7 is so cheap.
     
  7. blackhand1001, Oct 22, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012

    macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #7
    All the apps I use work great on tablets and the majority of the apps worth downloading on phones have tablet layouts. Things work pretty well on ones that don't, much better than the ipad phone app scaling. Games like angry birds, cut the rope, etc don't need seperate tablet apps as android renders them at the devices native resolution automatically so those are automatically tablet ready. No scaling is done. Just get the nexus 7. I am extremely happy with mine. It would still be happy even if I paid 350 or 400. Its that good.
     
  8. macrumors 604

    cynics

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #8
    OP: Do you have any app in particular you want a screen shot of? I'm using a 10.1" Xoom so which was made for landscape. I *should* be having the worse experience....
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 65816

    Dolorian

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    #9
    Ok here are the apps I use the most:

    Gmail, Google+, Chrome, Google Talk, Feedly, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Evernote, Google Calendar, Google Drive, YouTube, Goole Play Music, WhatApp, Amazon, IMDB, Netflix, SimpleMind Free.

    I am sure games like Final Fantasy III, The Bard's Tale and emulators for PSX, SNES and NES should scale nicely. The apps I listed above would be nice if they they have a tablet version. I imagine that those made by Google should have their tablet version out.

    ----------

    Fair enough, checkout the list I made above.
     
  10. macrumors 604

    cynics

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #10
    Some of those have sensitive data but here are some.

    YouTube
    [​IMG]

    Chrome
    [​IMG]

    Calendar (had to make it look bad due to personal info on a right side info bar)
    [​IMG]

    Netflix
    [​IMG]

    HBO Go
    [​IMG]

    Play Music

    Featured
    [​IMG]

    Top album (you can obviously change genre etc, I don't use it)
    [​IMG]

    Google maps
    [​IMG]

    Beyondpod
    [​IMG]

    Dead Trigger (just like with iDevices the better the device the better the graphics)
    [​IMG]

    The only app I have that does this

    Speedtest
    [​IMG]

    Doesn't bother me with this app though
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 5, 2005
    Location:
    Montreal, Quebec
    #11
    The Nexus 7 is small enough that I honestly don't find tablet optimization an issue (and I have used the iPad as well). I really only use landscape mode for videos and games because otherwise the vertical height is too little, and the apps have all scaled nicely IMO.

    A 10 inch tab I'd probably be more hesitant about. But the 7 is fine.
     
  12. macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Location:
    Kirkland
    #12
    How did you get YouTube to go like that? I'm on my Nexus 7 and it only ever looks like this.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. macrumors 68020

    b166er

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    Location:
    Philly
    #13
    Even the Nexus 7 doesn't have many apps optimized for it. No amazon app for the nexus, seriously?!

    I think the nexus 7 is a great tablet for a great price, but a lot of developers aren't really concerned about optimization since 7 inches isn't all that much bigger than monstrous 5 inch phablets they are already developing for.

    That being said I still enjoy my nexus and I have found most apps I've wanted to be within my own tolerable limits.
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2011
    #14
    Half of those are Google apps...
     
  15. macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Location:
    Kirkland
    #15
    They're also the apps that OP asked to see.
     
  16. macrumors 604

    cynics

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #16
    What happens when you touch YouTube at the top to go back. Then put it in landscape? More then likely a 7" tab won't do it because even on a 10" those video icons are very small, probably too small on a 7" tab...

    ----------

    And I didnt even do all the Google apps he asked for like Gmail , Google+, Google Talk and Google Drive....
     
  17. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    #17
    Android has proper scaling built into the code and it works wonderfully, unlike with say, the iPhone 5 that can't scale without the code being rewritten for the app, hence the black or grey bars at the top and bottom/sides of the screen. Or say using the iPad and having to click 2x, which then pixelates the crap out of the app.

    Android has to have scaling built in because it is run on so many different screen sizes. Besides, if an app hasn't been designed for your specific tablet or phone, the Play Store will tell you and you won't be able to download it (unless you go out of your way and sideload the apk file).

    Anyone that says Android doesn't scale properly aren't downloading official apps or are using some brown box, no name brand tablet with a crappy display running at 800x480. I have used Samsung Tab's and HP Touchpad's, along with a 7" Android tablet (Nexus7), all running ICS or JB and official apps, and have never had the scaling issues I had with the iPad.
     
  18. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    #18
    That YouTube app looks like that on certain devices (I know the Samsung Tab 8.9 and 10.1 look like that).
     
  19. Dolorian, Oct 22, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012

    thread starter macrumors 65816

    Dolorian

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    #19
    Thanks for all the screenshots! I understand that some of the apps I listed have sensitive data. The Google apps look nice, as expected. I think it is safe to assume that all of their apps have tablet ready versions. Evernote as was mentioned also has a tablet version, which is nice as I use that app often too. I'll have to look up if feedly is optimized for tablets.

    Thanks again for the screens!

    Here are two more I found on another article:

    Gmail
    [​IMG]

    Twitter
    [​IMG]

    Gmail looks nice, having a panel on the left, but Twitter is just scaled and doesn't uses the bigger screen efficiently. Both images are from this article:

    Google to Android devs: make nicer tablet apps, pretty please?

    Good read.
     
  20. macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #20
    All the games will work perfectly as they pretty much never have scaling issues on android (trust me, I even messed with sdk emulator to emulate a device with very strange resolutions like 8x2 ratios and I couldn't break the games. Also i think just about everyone of those apps you listed in your first list also has a tablet layout. You should be pretty good.
     
  21. macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #21
    All these screens make me want a Nexus 7. :(
     
  22. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 29, 2010
    #22
    I had a android tablet before handing it to my GF. It was a Asus Transformer Prime. A lot of the apps looked like crap because they weren't optimized for tablet. It was so irrating because I bought the ipad 3 the same day I got the Transformer and was comparing apps. I was actually going to keep the Transformer for myself and let my daughter and GF use the ipad, but it changed when I compared the apps. If getting a android tablet go with the Nexus 7 since phone apps won't look bad.

    ----------

    that's because you're using the phone app.
     
  23. macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #23
    SO buy one. Rumor is the 16gb will drop to 199 and a 32gb will take its place at 249.
     
  24. macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #24
    I don't know if I can justify such an interstitial device between my Galaxy Nexus, my iPad 3 and my MBA 13"...

    Just can't justify it, even though I want it. I may not be able to resist if there's a really good bargain this black Friday or holiday season...
     
  25. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    #25
    Twitter is not that great compared to Tweetcaster in my opinion. This is Tweetcaster on my Nex7:
     

    Attached Files:

Share This Page