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Toni

Hi! I need to develop an app compatible with smartphones and tablets. Which is the best solution? One version app for both devices or one version for each device?

IT Engineer - Durability Department en Applus IDIADA

Develop a version based on Android 2.3.X or develop one for the majority of smartphones (2.3.X) and one for tablets (4.X). Tablets supports android versions older than 3.0?

  • Comment (13)
  • June 27, 2012
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  • Richard B.

    Richard

    Richard B.

    Seeking Opportunities | Technology Leader | Data Architect | Distributed Systems | Enterprise Solutions | IT Manager

    The answer depends upon the nature of the app. If the UI on a smartphone is split into multiple screens solely because it will not fit on a single small screen, then two versions might be worth the trouble. However, the best approach may be to use Fragments to conditionally structure the UI based upon the device on which the app is running.

    Fragments work well if you are primarily reorganizing the UI based upon the device display size. To be successful, you need to be sure your application is structured such that all functionality is placed in classes that are separate from the UI. This is a common design standard but is especially important when using Fragments supporting multiple screen sizes.

    Hope this helps.

  • Toni

    Toni L.

    IT Engineer - Durability Department en Applus IDIADA

    Thanks Richard!
    I think Fragments could be a good approach but it's only available with the API level 11 or higher (Android 3.0). So, the 65% of smartphones devices have installed and Android lower version (2.3.X). It's an important handicap.

  • Richard B.

    Richard

    Richard B.

    Seeking Opportunities | Technology Leader | Data Architect | Distributed Systems | Enterprise Solutions | IT Manager

    I think Fragments can be used with API 8 and later if you include the
    compatibility library. I could be wrong about this. I have not tried it.

  • Eric

    Eric R.

    Independent Software Engineer at Independent Software Engineer

    There's also the size consideration. If your tablet version has many large, tablet sized graphics (think full screen background images), you might not want to encumber phone format users with the large .apk.

  • Neha D.

    Neha

    Neha D.

    Associate Software Engineer at InfoBeans

    i think u can use phonegap

  • Vivek

    Vivek H.

    Data Scientist at TubeMogul, Inc.

    @Richard you are right. You need to include the support library to make fragments code compile with older versions of android http://developer.android.com/tools/extras/support-library.html. Also the google IO schedule app is an app you can look through, they support both tablet and phone screens. http://code.google.com/p/iosched/

  • Paul D.

    Paul

    Paul D.

    CEO at Deitel & Associates, Inc. and Owner, Deitel & Associates, Inc.

    Fragments were back ported so you can use them with earlier versions of Android. If the basic components of your app's GUI are the same and just being reorganized, as others have said, they are the way to go. You do need the compatibility pack though, which you can get via the SDK Manager.

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