Earlier today, seven leaked screenshots popped up online showcasing what’s believed to be an unreleased version of Android 5.0.1 Lollipop skinned with Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface running on a Galaxy S4.
Perhaps bowing to immense pressure and boatloads of frustrated user reviews, Samsung appears to be stripping down its TouchWiz overlay of Android for the upcoming Galaxy S6, bringing it closer in line with stock Android. As one industry source stated, “We are aiming to get rid of unnecessary functions and simplify our UI at the level of Google’s Nexus 6.”
It’s no secret that Samsung has been toying with the idea of offering the ability for users of its smartphones the ability to theme their devices. Much like that of third party launchers, users would be able to set a general scheme complete with themed icons for TouchWiz. It looks like the company will be making theming a priority in future devices with Samsung’s next Galaxy flagship, the S6 leading the charge.
Last week we got a glimpse of Samsung’s new theme capabilities that are likely coming with the next version of TouchWiz. More images surfaced giving us a better idea of what Samsung is cooking up.
To get to the Theme options, users will need to long press on a home screen or go to the Display and Wallpaper section in the Settings menu. You can also see that five Themes are offered: Samsung Basic, Natural, Craft, Sweet, and another that we can’t see the name of.
The concept of themes applied to the interface of an Android device is nothing new as many third-party launchers have supported themes for a long time now. The ability to quickly change the look of a device is a feature that many people enjoy as witnessed by the popularity of third-party launchers along with the host of theme and icon packs available through the Play Store. Based on some new images that surfaced it appears Samsung may have realized they can keep people using their own TouchWiz UI if they add in the ability to load themes.
Last week, we were able to see what the Android Lollipop update will look like on the Galaxy S 4, but if you want a more detailed comparison with the current KitKat version, you’ve come to the right place. Sam Mobile put together a video detailing the differences as well as some screenshots.
The overall look of the UI will be the same, but the core apps will get updated with Material Design and a lot of the functionality gets improved. There are a notable amount of performance improvements as well.
We have a bunch of screenshots and the video after the break.
In about a month, we will get the newest version of Android, Android L (or whatever they will call it) featuring Material Design. The big question is what, if any, changes will manufacturers make to their interfaces? Samsung is by far the most popular brand when it comes to Android phones, but their TouchWiz interface has never excited anyone. Will they finally change that dated Gingerbread look?
The folks over at Sam Mobile got their hands on an early build of the next version of TouchWiz on the Galaxy S 5. Although very buggy and slow, it reveals where Samsung is headed with Material Design.
Yesterday, Samsung tweeted a little teaser revealing a new circular icon look for TouchWiz. Not that we needed confirmation from something that was offered by the company itself, but a leaked screenshot from the Galaxy S 5 does just that. As you can clearly see, the image probably comes from China, but is has some of the same icons that were shown in yesterday’s teaser. Hit the break to see the comparison.
In late January, word came out that Samsung and Google had reached some agreements to work on presenting a more unified user experience on Android devices. As part of that agreement, it appears Samsung is on the way to phasing out the Magazine UX it had been working on despite the recent release of new tablets equipped with Magazine. A new screenshot of the KitKat notification bar that Samsung is working on for their devices shows how the company is in fact reversing course to come closer to Google’s vision for the platform. The choice of color for the icons may seem like a simple thing, and it is, but it reveals a lot about the direction of development.
When Google released KitKat last year, one thing users noticed almost immediately were the white-only icons in the notification bar. The change to a monochrome design was significant enough that Google even had to spend some time explaining why this had occurred. The new image shows that Samsung has adopted Google’s direction in this area and extended this design cue to its own TouchWiz interface. Eldar Murtazin, @eldarmurtazin, indicates in his tweets about this change that it also means a lot for the future of the TouchWiz interface. This likely means the flat, monochrome concept may be extended throughout the user experience on Samsung devices.
The race to release the first smartphone with a flexible screen is over. The LG G Flex and Samsung Galaxy Round have been released
in all their glory. Now, the race begins to create an a smartphone that actually utilizes the flexible screen correctly.
Some Samsung sketches just leaked, which show exactly what they’re trying to do here with their next generation of smartphones. These ideas aren’t anything new, as Samsung showed us a prototype with a bent screen on the side of the device, creating a control/information bar.
Bloomberg brings us today’s leaked plans. Hit the break to see just a few things that could be done with such a phone: