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Making Standard Tab and Menu Icons for Android

When developing Android apps or designing graphics for Android apps, one must conform to srict guidelines. Using images designed for different operating systems, especially desktop-based, is generally not a good idea. Foreign graphics will look out of place at best, or will render your Android apps appear hardly recognizable at worst.

Producing Standard Tab and Menu Icons for Android Description: When developing Android apps or drawing graphics for Android apps, one must conform to srict guidelines. Re-using graphics made for different operating systems, especially desktop-based, is generally not a good idea. Foreign graphics will look out of place at best, or will make your Android apps hardly recognizable at worst. Body: There exist precise guidelines published in reference to Android icons. Different design guidelines are available for tab icons and menu images.

Android Icons for Navigation Tab Bars

Tab icons are drawn in individual tabs in tabbed interface. Tab icons should be supplied in two distinct states: selected and unselected. It is recommended that tab icons are drawn as simple, flat shapes as opposed to images shown in 3D or isometric projection.

Android OS and Android apps can run on a variety of different platforms using a wide range of hardware. In connection to icon graphics, those platforms can have different screen sizes, display resolutions, pixel density and dimensions. To accommodate the wide range of displays, Android developers must supply all tab icons used in their apps in at least three resolutions to be drawn on low, medium, and high density displays. Pixel-wise, the outer boundaries for the three resolutions are defined as 24x24, 32x32, and 48x48 pixels. Inner dimensions should not exceed 22x22, 28x28, and 42x42 pixels respectively. By providing all three standard sizes, developers can ensure that their apps will be shown properly on a variety of devices running the Android OS.

Menu icons are displayed in the "options" menu, and are displayed to users when they press the Menu button. Similar to tab icons, menu icons are specified as flat, grayscale images. Like tab icons, developers cannot use 3D or isometric projections.

Pixel sizes for menu icons are described in a slightly more complex way compared to tab icons. Instead of two sizes described for tab icons (inner shape and boundary box), the inner shape of menu icons can be smaller or bigger depending on their shape. If a menu icon is square-shaped, its size should be smaller than for icons shaped otherwise. The reason for having two different size limits is to establish a consistent visual weight across the two icon types.

The outer dimensions for ldpi, mdpi and hdpi icons are defined as 36x36, 48x48, and 72x72 pixels respectively. Inner shapes for square, low-definition icons should be 22x22 pixels, while non-square icons should fit into a boundary box sized 24x24 pixels. Similarly, medium-definition icons should fit 30x30 and 32x32 pixel boundaries, while high-definition images should fit into 44x44 and 48x48 pixel boundaries respectively.

Instead of drawing your own icons matching these guidelines, Android developers have an option of getting ready-made images from professional designers. For example, Android Tab Icons by Aha-Soft include 112 unique tab graphics in selected and unselected states and all three standard sizes. Should additional resolutions be required, developers can produce images at any resolution by opening scalable vector sources. Android Tab Icons can be viewed and downloaded at http://www.aha-soft.com/stock-icons/android-tab-icons.htm.

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Desktop Device Icons Desktop Device Icons are good to be used in personal desktop enhancement, for application icons, or menu icons. This set has it all, from 256x256 Vista sized images to 16x16 toolbar icons.

Large Weather Icons Large Weather Icons depict different weather conditions typical in software, weather Web sites, and mobile gadgets. The images come in typical sizes standard to Windows, Mac OS, and other platforms. The largest versions are huge 512x512 pixel images with vector sources in Adobe Illustrator (.ai) format easily available and ready to be printed or used in presentations in highest resolution.

Medical Icon Set Icons for medicine and chemistry: ambulance car, snake cup, pill, tablet, tooth, phial, syringe, test-tube, skull, bones, molecules and others.

Small Computer Icons Small Computer Icons library is a perfect way to enhance your desktop or website. All the graphics are available in a number of file formats, sizes, states and color schemes.

Perfect Mobile Icons Enhance the appearance of mobile software by using a library of stylish icons. GPRS, various Battery states, 3G, Bluetooth, Ring Tone, SMS, Email, Dial and Hang-up, and a lot more great icons common for PDA.