When we started building for the first mobile devices, mobile meant less: less screen space, slower connection, fewer features. A mobile experience was often a lesser experience. But mobile devices have evolved—they have become more powerful, faster, and more intuitive—so must our approach to design.
And as Google, including the Android platform, expands into new form factors, we’re introducing one consistent design that spans devices across mobile, desktop, and beyond. Today at Google I/O, we introduced material design, which uses tactile surfaces, bold graphic design, and fluid motion to create beautiful, intuitive experiences.
In material design, surface and shadow establish a physical structure to explain what can be touched and what can move. Content is front and center, using principles of modern print design. Motion is meaningful, clarifying relationships and teaching with delightful details.
We needed something that felt at home on the smallest watch, the largest TV, and every screen in between. We used it for Android Wear, our project to extend Android wearables, as well as Android TV, and Android Auto. So as you create applications and services for this expansive new range of devices, we’ve created one unified set of style guidelines that works across any platform. We’re releasing the first version of these guidelines as part of our preview today. You can find them on google.com/design.
Bringing material design to Android is a big part of the L-Release of Android, the version we previewed today. We’ve added the new Material theme, which you can apply to your apps for a new style: it lets you easily infuse your own color palette into your app, and offers new system widgets, screen transitions and animated touch feedback. We’ve also added the ability to specify a view’s elevation, allowing you to raise UI elements and cast dynamic, real-time shadows in your apps.
Last year at I/O we announced Polymer, an ambitious UI toolkit for the web. As a developer, you’ll now have access to all the capabilities of material design via Polymer, bringing tangibility, bold graphics, and smooth animations to your applications on the web.
If you’d like to learn more about material design, please take a look at our guidelines. Join us as we continue to design and iterate at +Google Design.