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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 certain guidelines. Using icons made for different operating systems, especially desktop-based, is not a good idea. Foreign graphics will look weird at best, or will make your Android apps hardly recognizable at worst.

Producing Tab and Menu Icons for Android Apps Description: When designing Android apps or drawing graphics for Android apps, it is essential to conform to srict guidelines. Re-using icons designed for other systems, especially desktop-based, is 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 are strict guidelines available for designing standard-compliant Android icons. Different design guidelines are published for tab icons and menu images.

Android Icons for Navigation Toolbars

Tab icons represent individual tabs in tabbed interface. Tab icons must be provided in two different states: unselected and selected. It is recommended that tab icons are designed as simple, flat shapes as opposed to images drawn in 3D or isometric projection.

Android OS and Android apps are used on a variety of different platforms using a wide range of hardware. In connection to icon graphics, those devices can have different display sizes, display resolutions, pixel density and dimensions. To accommodate the wide range of screens, Android developers should supply all tab icons used in their apps in at least three resolutions to be displayed on low, medium, and high density screens. 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 supplying all three standard sizes, designers can ensure that their apps will display properly on a variety of platforms running the Android OS.

Menu icons are drawn in the "options" menu, and are shown to users when they press the Menu button. Similar to tab icons, menu icons should be flat, greyscale images. Like tab icons, developers should not use 3D or isometric projections.

Screen sizes for menu icons are defined in a slightly more complex way compared to tab icons. Instead of just two resolutions described for tab graphics (inner shape and boundary box), the inner shape of menu icons can be smaller or larger depending on whether they are square-shaped or not. If a menu icon is square-shaped, its resolution should be smaller than for icons shaped otherwise. The reason for specifying 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 described as 36x36, 48x48, and 72x72 pixels respectively. Inner shapes for square, low-definition icons is 22x22 pixels, while non-square icons should fit into a boundary box sized 24x24 pixels. Similarly, mdpi icons should fit 30x30 and 32x32 pixel boxes, while high-definition images should fit into 44x44 and 48x48 pixel boundaries respectively.

Instead of designing your own images matching these guidelines, Android developers have an option of ordering ready-made graphics from professional designers. As an example, Android Tab Icons by Aha-Soft include 112 unique tab images in selected and unselected states and all three standard sizes. If an additional size is needed, developers can produce icons 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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Large Money Icons Large Money Icons is a collection of professionally made icons for use in commercial and personal projects, such as software applications, websites, blogs and presentations. The icons have a bright color palette, and smooth edges.

Standard Business Icons Standard Business Icons is a collection of great-looking stock icons to be used in software and on web pages. Images come in such categories as Money, Reports, Transport, Finances and Business.

Database Icon Set Database Icon Set brings you lots of bright and colorful icons for database software development. The images are available in all the typical icon sizes and file formats include ICO, GIF, PNG and BMP.

Large Icons for Vista Large Icons for Vista is a collection of smooth and polished icons created in the same manner as the original Vista icons. The images come in two variants: with or without shadows.

Standard Software Icons Standard Software Icons is set of eye-caching software-related icons carefully designed by professional artists. This set is a perfect choice for navigation menus and toolbars of all sorts.