How the First Few Strides Were Taken in Designing Android Wear

The Google Android Wear is just a few days old and it has already got a lot of people talking. Where the feedback leans more towards being positive, the product will catch on with the users with time.

That said, what really prompted Google to delve into this territory? Did the competition influence them? Was it another one of their ventures to get a stronger foothold over the market? Or was it both?

There is an interesting enough story about how the Google Android Wear has evolved. Roman Nurik and Timothy Jordan, from the Android, were involved in a random discussion session centered on developing some apps around hardware that can be worn by the users. The discussion was steered by the doubts concerning how to retain and hold the user attention while giving room for developers to create and innovate. Also, one of the main concerns that was a big part of the whole conversation was how to create apps that stay true to the present opportunities and user expectations and how they can create a wearable device that is more of an operating system.

So, what was needed for them to branch out and design an app that would work in perfect compatibility with the Android Wear. They charted out a few ideas and started roaming a territory that was not all too familiar to them.

Roman had earlier been a part of the Glass design sprint in New York and his team created a walking tour app, which did get some eyeballs. The app was basically woven around the concept of users scrolling between the stops and get a clear-eyed idea about destination.

While the design was restricted to mocks, Roman made sure he didn't let the idea slip, and built upon the same.

And that's When the Process of Designing a Walking Tour App for the Android Wear Began
To begin with, the first consideration was how the app would be initiated by the general user. While it was common knowledge that a voice command would be needed, what would set the app apart would be a way of real-time notifying the users about the nearby walking circuits throughout the day. And the notifications had to be sent in the user's context stream. Android Wear 0.1 design template was used to begin the UI mock.

Apparently, the results were pleasing. The other elements of the app for displaying them on square devices were chalked out and there are more screens for added notification like notifying the user about the location of the next stop in terms of the distance. It also contained a detailed information set of the location where the user would be presently located.

Now, both Timothy and Roman brought the Moto 360 prototype and and the LG G Watch prototype for testing their walking tour app. At the same time, they were in search of a way to send the screens to their devices for some seamless iterations on the design. To their delight, the mocks were displayed in a fine manner on the LG G Watch.

Designing for Round Devices Began
Here came one more tricky part. While they didn't have experience in designing for round Uis, they discovered that it was a matter of few minutes to alter their screen mocks for the round screen. They just
  • Scaled up backgrounds 
  • Altered the content margins from 12 dp to 26 dp 
  • Aligned the text snippets to be displayed at the center of the watch screen 
  • Let the context stream cards lose their side padding
And when the same mocks were run on the Moto 360 prototype, the results were breathlessly exciting. So, now, they had successfully developed mocks and mirrored the same on different devices.

An Experience to Earn Massively from
The app for an Android Wear has to be designed with a lot of considerations. The contexts in which the app will be accessed has to be carefully fleshed out. And while there are boundaries, working within those was when Timothy and Roman discovered the most about developing OS for wearable devices.

It was the aforementioned randomizing that led to Google Android Wear, and by the looks of it, the ideas have been put into practice in the most efficacious fashion.

Author Bio:

Juana Steves is a technical writer associated with Xicom Technologies – a leading Android Applications Development Company. You can also avail Android Apps Developers for hire, in case you are looking forward for the same.

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