By announcing that Keep is getting a material you are redesigning, Google yesterday failed to mention that there were new widgets included as well. We have since activated them and they are absolutely amazing.
About APK Insight: In this “APK Insight” post, we have decompiled the latest version of an application that Google uploaded to the Play Store. When we decompile these files (called APKs, for Android apps), we can see different lines of code within this hint about possible future features. Keep in mind that Google may or may never transmit these features, and our interpretation of what they are may be imperfect. We will try to activate those that are closer to being finished, but show you what they will look like if they send. With that in mind, read on.
The app’s redesign is fairly straightforward and starts with a flat, pill-shaped search box that includes a hamburger menu, list / grid view switch and profile avatar. The box and bottom line have a light theme, while there is a new rounded square FAB that curiously retains the four-colored ‘plus’ sign that disappears everywhere else. This is the most important material you rebuild in Google’s listing app.
Widgets are the right upgrade here. Just like in Google Drive, there is an X-shaped “Quick Capture” that lets you create a new checklist, drawing, voice recording or picture note. The latter now uses a more straightforward camera icon, while a regular text entry can be started by pressing the center.
This widget should be at least 3 × 2 while the standard bar shape is still available. At 4 × 1 you get all five actions, but 3 × 1 gives you an item on the home screen dedicated to just making a new note.
In the meantime, Google Keep ‘Note List’ may be the best material you have widget to date. The previous design just had a top row of creation shortcuts followed by a simple, scrollable feed.
This redesigned widget is app-like in density, especially when expanded to capture the entire screen — which some people already do for Keep. Shortcuts are moved to the right with a prominent “add note” FAB in the corner. You get a list on the left with rounded corners. At 3-wide you lose the sidebar and get a proper FAB at the bottom right, just like in apps. It feels like you are using a full blown application right on your home screen.
The Google Keep material you redesign and updated widgets rolls out with version 5.21.361.
Thanks to JEB Decompiler, which some APK Insight demolition benefits from.
Dylan Roussel contributed to this article
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