Posted by: Ali Abbas in Android, Android ROM, Smartphones, tags: Android, gingerbread, ice cream sandwich, ics, samsung galaxy s2, Samsung Galaxy SII
Recently , on 29th May to be more specific , Samsung rolled out an Ice Cream Sandwich Update for India based carrier Galaxy S2 (GT-I9100) users via Kies and OTA (Over the Air) . Since then, after updating my mobile I have been engrossed in finding out the particular user interface changes that have been added in the ICS upgrade. Listed below are some of the changes which I could notice in my phone. There might be other changes too which I have missed. If so , please let me know.
- This is the native home screen without the use of any launcher app. The clock shown is not the default clock and is an external widget which I have added for an element of elegance. Notice the change in the status bar icons i.e. battery and mobile signals. The % battery icon on the top left corner is also an additional app.
- This is the native Gmail App. You can see that the user interface has been revamped significantly from the older versions. The newer UI is cleaner and easier to use.
- The volume display which comes up on pressing the volume keys has also been changed to a sleeker design. The position at which it appears has also been lowered down a bit. The volume keys now are more responsive.
- The User Interface of the GTalk App has also been revamped a bit.
- Shown below is the trademark ICS screen which comes up on long pressing the Home Key . It shows recently used Apps and these apps could be removed from the lists by swiping them to the left.
- Layout of the Settings menu has been changed and made more user friendly by putting up WiFi and Bluetooth toggle upfront. For more detailed Network related settings an option of More... has been added.
- A new feature of Facial unlock has been added with the help of which you can unlock your mobile by just looking at it at the lock screen. This feature is weak considering its security as anyone whose face is similar to yours could unlock the phone. I think this feature is just an eye-candy to please the users as it takes 2-3 seconds for the camera to load up and another 1/2 second for recognition. So in essence this is also the slowest type of unlock.
- A new feature of tracking mobile and WiFi data usage has been added in ICS with help of which you can track and limit your data usage uptil a user defined value. You can even specify duration to measure the data according to your network plan details.
- The bottom menu bar which opened after pressing the menu button on the bottom left of the phone has been replaced by a menu list.
- The Pattern Lock UI has been revamped . In my view this pattern scheme looks quite better than the older one.
- The slide screen to unlock feature remains the same but instead of moving the screen you just move the lock a bit to unlock the phone.
The voice call menu which comes up at the time of an incoming call has been changed a bit as shown below.
- Other changes include new smileys in messaging, keyboard icon on the notification bar when ever the device keyboard is active, changing the phone profile from normal to vibrate and then to silent by tapping the sound button in the drop down notification menu, message notification on lock screen etc.
- The ICS S2 also lets you choose whether to display weather info and the clock on the lock screen, and where to position them.Th weather info thingy is new in this version of android and was not available in the previous versions.
- After upgrading to ICS you get to install Chrome browser for android which is not available for Gingerbread. It brings in features like syncing your chrome bookmarks on all of your devices (including PC, Laptop, Tablet etc.) and opening currently opened tabs on other devices right into your chrome app.
- A new option of restart device has been added in the power/unlock button long press menu.
- There have also been few changes in the contact menu regarding photo size of favorite contacts and select and cancel buttons.