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Making Tab and Menu Icons for Android

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

Designing Standard Tab and Menu Icons for Android Description: When developing Android apps or drawing graphics for mobile apps, it is essential to follow srict guidelines. Re-using images made for different operating systems, especially desktop-based, is generally not a good idea. Foreign graphics will look weird at best, or will make your Android apps hardly recognizable at worst. Body: There exist precise guidelines available for designing standard-compliant Android icons. Different design guidelines are published for tab icons and menu images.

Android Icons for Navigation Bars

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

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

Menu icons are drawn in the "options" menu, and are shown to the user when they press the Menu button. Similar to tab icons, menu icons should be flat, grayscale images. Just as tab icons, developers cannot use 3D or isometric projections.

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

The outer dimensions for low, medium, and high resolution 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, medium-definition icons should fit 30x30 and 32x32 pixel boxes, while high-definition images should fit into 44x44 and 48x48 pixel boxes respectively.

Instead of designing your own graphics matching these guidelines, Android developers have an option of getting stock graphics from professional designers. As an example, Android Tab Icons by Aha-Soft offer 112 unique tab graphics in selected and unselected states and all standard sizes. If an additional size is needed, developers can render icons at any size by accessing 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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Transport Icon Set Transport Icon Set. A pack of bright and distinctive small images depicting all transport types for the logistics and travel industries.

Large Money Icons Large Money Icons is a collection of hand-drawn icons for use in any spftware or Web projects, such as software applications, websites, blogs and presentations. All the images have a bright color palette, smooth and well-rounded edges.

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Business Icon Set Business Icon Set is a library of fine-looking stock icons for use in software and on websites. They are delivered in a variety of formats, sizes and color schemes.