Now that the Android 4.0 update is out in the world, more and more apps will be made just for the new system, and Google wants to make sure those apps meet a few basic standards. The wild west days of Android app development seem to be numbered. That's because Google debuted the Android Design Web site Jan. 12, and it will serve as a kind of style guide for prospective app developers to follow. If Android apps are going to be easy to use, intuitive and fun, Google thinks this is the first step towards making that happen.
Google's new plan is for developers to build apps just for Android, and for them to avoid building iOS apps and then porting them over to the Android side of things. That is one tough sell considering Android apps don't make nearly as much money for developers as iOS apps. That's why Google's new push for design standards is as much for people who use the apps as for the ones who build them. In other words, Google's advocating for better apps is one way of showing Android users the company is deadly serious about making the best experience in the mobile world.
After all, developers don't have to follow all the new rules Google is throwing at them, so we'll see how much feedback Google takes into consideration for new Ice Cream Sandwich only apps. One of the ways the search giant plans to get apps to work on the several different Android versions is to offer new tools called buckets that can tell what version you're using. By using the new tools, developers can save time by avoiding re-writing their programs to run on the different systems. As more and more Android phones get the Ice Cream Sandwich update, it will be easier to see if the new guidelines are working. Tell us in the comments what your favorite Android app is or if you know of a an app that could use some design guidelines (because of poor/cheap design).