Android Design Patterns: Interaction Design Solutions for Developers

See it on (opens in a new window)“The humorous prose is colorful and makes the material a fun read… This is very “visual” reading, and is much enjoyed and appreciated. The analysis is spot on, and expertly worded… It’s a winner. We need more of this colorful kind of writing about technical things.”
– Smashing Magazine reviewer


Here are 58 essential interaction design patterns for handling the most challenging aspects of Android app design: the welcome experience, home screen, navigation, search, sorting and filtering, data entry, and forms. Equally important are 12 antipatterns, describing common mistakes to avoid in your quest for customer empowerment, delight, and enjoyment.

This book will enable you to:

1. Use effective Android UI Design Patterns:

  • Identify the right design approaches to use for specific situations.
  • Avoid antipatterns and mobile design dead-ends.
  • Create intuitive, delightful, empowering experience for your customers.
  • Design usable, delightful, modern Android 4.x apps.

2. Design consistent brand experiences across touch platforms:

  • Understand the key differences between today’s leading OS: iOS, Android 4, Android 2.3.
  • Take full advantage of the unique features and native controls to get the most out of Android 4.x.
  • Recognize when “build once, deploy everywhere” method works, and when it’s a terrific recipe for mediocre apps.

3. Celebrate Android fragmentation:

  • Apply practical, ergonomics-based approach to solving Android fragmentation.
  • Design for and support Android across 3,997 distinct Android devices, screens sizes and resolutions (ref).
  • Know which devices to test with and which to ignore.

4. Make the most of the latest trends and technologies:

  • Design with responsive design, augmented reality, voice search, GPS locator, QR codes, and NFC.
  • Utilize natural multi-touch and accelerometer gestures so your design “dissolves in behavior”.
  • Prototype and test interface transitions using inexpensive, practical, effective strategies.
  • Create the right UI for each device type; scale your app for 7- and 10- inch tablets.

5. Build and user-test your designs with effective, inexpensive prototypes:

  • Be inspired by hand-drawn sticky-notes wireframes that come with almost every pattern.
  • Utilize the blueprint of light-weight guerrilla user testing strategies that work in the real world.
  • Employ detailed case studies of what works and what doesn’t.
  • Use Android interpretations of great ideas from other mobile operating systems.
  • Put to work specialized design patterns from chapters devoted to Mobile Banking and Tablets Design.
  • Push the envelope with experimental patterns which explore the cutting edge of Android design.


thresa_neil“This book is more of a workshop than a reference book. Greg builds upon the universal design patterns for mobile devices and tablets and the Android UI design guidelines and takes the topic further into hands-on practical applications of the design principles. Each section covers fundamentals, warns of pitfalls and antipatterns, and then puts the lessons to the test by redesigning an existing application. You can and should bring this book to design sessions, and you should share it with your team.

By reading and using Greg’s entire book you will tremendously improve the entire mobile experience you will be creating for your customers. Bottom line, there is no other resource out there that goes to this level of depth on Android application design.”

– From the foreword by Theresa Neil: UX Designer, Start-up Advisor, Author: “Mobile Design Pattern Gallery”


Want a sample? Sign up below to get:

  • Your free 10-part Android design mini-course + bonus design patterns from my new book — right in your inbox.
  • Ongoing mobile and tablet design pattern articles on special topics like Welcome patterns and Navigation.
  • More downloadable mini-apps complete with Java source code for Android experimental patterns.
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About the author: Greg Nudelman is a Mobile Experience Strategist, Fortune 500 Advisor and CEO of DesignCaffeine, Inc.

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Testimonials from our Agile Mobile Design Workshop @SXSW 2013