Leaked images show revised flatter icons destined for Android 4.5

Android is rumored to get a visual update in its next version with flatter icons, ditching some of the skeuomorphic elements in current icons.

According to a report by Android Police, who managed to secure a few images showing the design changes in the Android operating system, Google will be updating the Android icons to look similar to the one used on the company's web applications. The new iconography is known as "Moonshine" internally.

The report also shows a set of comparisons with the previous version of icons and the new ones. While most icons have retained their likeness with the previous style which was introduced in Android KitKat, some icons such as the one for camera, contacts and Play Movies have been modified significantly. Android Police have spotted the Maps, YouTube and Calendar icons on Chromecast partners website as well so it won't be long till we see more of these icons.

Other than the icons, the leaked images do not reveal any major changes to the Android UI at the moment but we can expect to see more as Google I/O is just a couple of months away.

Source: Android Police | Image via Android Police

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Some people on here spouting about not buying a carrier locked device for early updates, well my Galaxy S4 was bought outright and not locked to any carrier. I'm still waiting for KitKat in Australia, but yet my Lumia 920 can get WP8.1 now.

Samsung is slow at releasing firmwares. It's the worst thing I hate about my GS4

Gladiatorus said,
I really much prefer the current web ones except for the Maps icon.

Also one would think it would make sense for them to use the same freaking icons everywhere.

Not as ugly as Microsoft's "flat" icons but still not a design paradigm I really like. I can't see why this crap is so trendy, it looks vile.

fuzi0719 said,
Oh great, just what the world needs, another UI designed by Fisher-Price like IOS7 and WP.

You forgot Windows XP.

The people here comparing this proposed icon set change to Metro/Modern don't understand at all.

Microsoft's Live Tiles are in no way icons.

Icon based UIs do not equate to Modern in any way.

In any case, it's Google's product, they can change it they wish.
I would say this is playing copycat to any other icon based layout system, but never Modern/Metro from MS.

Are you F-ing kidding me ... where is the F_U troll image ...

I so much hate to the point of despise the iPhone and what looks like the *New* 4.5 icons. I am not sure why i hate the look so much. I for some reason loved the idea of 3D and shading - or 2d with neat shading and angle view. I feel like we went back in time, grabbed some god forsaken ms 3.1 icons (not necessarily a bad thing) and made them uglier to be the new *it*.

/rage - back to work now

I'm glad I'm in the Windows ecosystem. All those bright clashing colors in iOS7 and now this? Just show me the information and people that matter to me. Icons are so last century.

Forjo said,
I'm glad I'm in the Windows ecosystem. All those bright clashing colors in iOS7 and now this? Just show me the information and people that matter to me. Icons are so last century.

right and using an unpopular locked down os with few apps and running on last years hardware is so this century

Sonne said,

right and using an unpopular locked down os with few apps and running on last years hardware is so this century

There are enough apps for most people except die-hard app junkies who do not have anything better to do except playing with mobile all day.

I'd gladly take a Lumia 920 (let alone Lumia 1520) with 60Hz IPS LCD, one of the best camera with OIS and excellent build quality over any lagdroids or iphones. Thank you.

Sonne said,

right and using an unpopular locked down os with few apps and running on last years hardware is so this century


I'm on last year's hardware by choice -- I bought a contract free Lumia 920. I could have gotten a 1520 which is every bit as capable as the latest devices offered by the competition (and better in many ways). And even the 920 will perform many tasks faster than the latest Androids and iPhones simply due to it's design. Yes, those devices are still being "Smoked by Windows Phone".

Nearly 200,000 is not a few. And everything I want is there except for two banking apps (which I wouldn't even use since my wife pays those).

As for being locked down. I want it that way. There is absolutely NO malware on Windows phone, and no Nokia WP device has ever been jailbroken. I use my phone for work and I have client data in it. I need something secure and reliable. I'm not using my phone as a toy or a hobby.

And popularity does not equate to quality. Nor does it mean that a device will meet my needs.

Current design is homerun. but so was the gingerbread. I wish google focus on features and breakthrough innovation rather than icon sets.

Another instance of everyone mocking MS but ripping off metro. It is without question that MS and Metro have changed technology from a design/layout stand point.

Instead of crediting to Microsoft for this design, I think the credit should be for Samsung. How is this even looks like Microsoft's design? It isn't squares like Microsoft and also on Windows Phone and Windows the icons are just white with dynamic wallpaper colors (depending on the theme selected).

How is this...
http://blogs.windows.com/cfs-f..._2D00_res_5F00_313398B8.png

looks like the ones on the article?

I think the credit goes to Samsung because of their Super AMOLED display promoting more "colorful" or saturated display. People starts to prefer saturated colors over natural color and thus all these icons looks so colorful. Same goes to Apple with its iOS 7 which looks so damn colorful as well.

The photos icon don't make any sense to me, all the other ones one can more or less guess from other OS'es.

But it's interesting to see this flat design explosion after Win8 came out. Tiled or icon'ed ;-)

i dont like change! ::shakes old man fist::

they look alright. dont like the maps one, though. that yellow X is annoying.

Don't like it. I must be one of the few people that actually like 3D, gradients and even glass on all my UI's. I use a custom launcher that adds another row of icons to my home screen along with making the icons bigger. This would make it a big colored mess with the added borders. Unless they kill the ability to use your own icons, this won't bother people that really don't like it for more than an hour.

Don't people realize, that just like any design field, UI design follows trends. When smartphones first launched the trend was glassy with skeuomorphism, now the trends have shifted to flatter with no skeuomorphism. Some companies will be followers and some will be trend setters

Now they suffer from the same design inconsistency as Windows 8 with it's old icons that came out for previous versions. While Google changes there internal icons other app developers will take years to make these changes.

I like how the new icons look, though I thought we was moving away from shadows and whatnot, but I still don't like the difference size icons on Android.

The new allegedly proposed Hangouts icon looks weird, any of the other two versions shown looks far better IMO.

As for the rest I can't say I care that much, other than the calendar one which would be a change for the better.

paulheu said,
Not sure how any of those qualify as flat icons.

Indeed, I think "matte" images would be more appropriate. The icons appear much less shiny. I quite like it.

Raa said,
Worst idea ever. What suddenly made people think flat colors were cool? :/

Windows 8 probably? appears to have been all the craze since then.

InsaneNutter said,

Windows 8 probably? appears to have been all the craze since then.

Windows 8? Even in Microsoft history go back to Streets98 or ZuneHD or WP7 or WP8.

The funny thing about Google's 'take' is that is looks like a bad marriage of iOS7 and cartoons.

Raa said,
Worst idea ever. What suddenly made people think flat colors were cool? :/

People who got sick of shiny, overly gaudy ones where you could barely make out what they represent. But don't fret, everything's repeating so those will make a comeback eventually. Even though as someone else said the new icons aren't really 'flat', I prefer my icons even flatter.

i do wish Google would kinda stall on a new version of andriod for a much longer time and just do in place feature upgrades while staying with one version i have thee LGG2 on verzion and have yet to get 4.4.2 kittkat

notuptome2004 said,
i do wish Google would kinda stall on a new version of andriod for a much longer time and just do in place feature upgrades while staying with one version i have thee LGG2 on verzion and have yet to get 4.4.2 kittkat

They are already going in that direction: changes introduced with new Android versions are being reduced to a minimum while features are increasingly being shipped along with Google Services and Google Play updates.

notuptome2004 said,
i do wish Google would kinda stall on a new version of andriod for a much longer time and just do in place feature upgrades while staying with one version i have thee LGG2 on verzion and have yet to get 4.4.2 kittkat

It's not Google's fault if your carrier is lagging behind with updates. You shouldn't even have purchased a carrier device in the first place if you really cared about updates. Buy an International unlocked device and quite whining.

yowanvista said,

It's not Google's fault if your carrier is lagging behind with updates. You shouldn't even have purchased a carrier device in the first place if you really cared about updates. Buy an International unlocked device and quite whining.

Don't blame the carriers too much. They can't approve firmware and OS updates that haven't been compiled by the phone manufacturers.
Most Android phones are dropped within 6-18 months.
Nokia is pushing Windows Phone 8.1 plus new apps and firmwares for ALL of their Lumia WP8 phones. They can't update the WP7 phones because they do not have certain requirements such as the mandatory TPM, which makes WP8 more difficult to crack, jailbreak or ruin the OS install itself. All apps that aren't core apps can be uninstalled, including apps forced onto you by carriers and retailers.
WP7 is Windows Mobile (Windows CE) with tiles.
Android is a big resource hog and phone/tablet manufacturers don't want to upgrade the OS and firmware because it requires too much work to get it to work good enough.
Android has to be recompiled for each release.
Anyone with a Windows Phone 8 device can get their hands on the latest OS despite the phone manufacturer and carrier not giving a damn what so ever, without having to hack or jailbreak anything.
Watch and learn from Apple and Nokia.
Stop producing devices that will be dropped too early.
Google should be more strict on how often the devices have to be updated. Google doesn't care if the device NEVER gets an update.
Android is also too much of a resource hog, requiring beefy processors and lots of RAM to even be able to have smooth menus.

Don't blame the carriers too much. They can't approve firmware and OS updates that haven't been compiled by the phone manufacturers.

Carriers are a big part to blame here. They load their own special software on many devices.

Android is a big resource hog and phone/tablet manufacturers don't want to upgrade the OS and firmware because it requires too much work to get it to work good enough.

Android is also too much of a resource hog, requiring beefy processors and lots of RAM to even be able to have smooth menus.

This started to be an non issue with ICS, JB, and now KK. Many users are stuck on older versions, but going forward, wont be so much of an issue. So yea, they already addressed this. Moto X, Moto G and a few others are low end phones that run really smooth.

Watch and learn from Apple and Nokia.

Why should Google following Apple's and WPs model? This is working for them and no reason to change.

Meh, if you care about updates, there's no Android phone for you at all, current gen. I was so tired of seeing Nexus handsets getting frequent updates for all those years, so I hopped on the N5 bandwagon. There was a sputter of updates about a month or so after the phone launched with some half-assed fixes for LG's embarrassing BlueTooth fail, and it's been radio silence ever since. I don't think there's been a single system update yet this year.

I dig the components that were moved to the Play Store getting regular updates, but considering how many complaints there are with the flagship Google phone's performance, you'd think it would've had a little more attention. Instead, there are already more rumors about the upcoming Nexus 6 than about the next update for the 5.

Joshie said,
Instead, there are already more rumors about the upcoming Nexus 6 than about the next update for the 5.

The 4.4.3 update for the Nexus 5 is rolling out already through OTA.

I think the idea behind this is due to the whole "Circles" feature of it. Makes sense really because that's the first thing I thought when I saw it.

Steven P. said,
You're not cool if you don't have flat icons in your OS :p

you arent cool if your phone doesnt get updates for android either, like me - the uncoolest one ever

BajiRav said,

Almost all icons now have "flat" squares/rectangles behind them. Just like *ahem* iOS 7.

Yet none of the ones shown in this article do.

Steven P. said,
You're not cool if you don't have flat icons in your OS :p

Appears that way. I change all my icons so I dont really care to much.

techbeck said,

Google is implementing this and a lot of Android users and iPhone users still do not like the flat look. If you got rid of the insults, maybe you would see that.

Of course some people don't like them, and some people hate change in whatever form it comes. You will Always have those kind of people, no matter what direction you take with the OS. Your point being?

BajiRav said,

Actually all of them do? :/ (Proposed column)

Nope, none of them do. The square around them is just the home screen background left over because they didn't crop it. They've taken them from the screenshot at the top of the post.

M4x1mus said,

Nope, none of them do. The square around them is just the home screen background left over because they didn't crop it. They've taken them from the screenshot at the top of the post.


*hangs head in shame*
ichi won the internet today

BajiRav said,

Almost all icons now have "flat" squares/rectangles behind them. Just like *ahem* iOS 7.
iOS 7 icons isn't square? Isn't the one iOS using found even in the first iOS? iOS 7 only make it flat and more colourful... Neither is the Android one on this article?

ichi said,

Those fandroids and iDuds mocked the grid of flat rectangles, which I'm not sure what have to do at all with these icons.

+infinity. :)