Most of us were focused on the product announcements. We like to spend our money on tech gadgets like phones, tablets, and watches. The I/O is a developer conference.

The majority of time is spent showing off the improvements and new tools that developers use to build Android apps, rather than showing off consumer-facing things. There are apps that make a software platform viable. Rest in peace, Windows Phone, WebOS, and all the others.

In the core development sessions in 2022, the theme was about writing andOptimizing apps for bigger screens. Whether or not they were showing how easy it is to build an interface for the right size screen or how a developer can leverage the larger footprint, they really pushed the foldable angle.

The point will be driven by a Pixel Tablet sometime in 2023. It seems that after a break, the search engine is interested in apps for the big screen again.


Try and try again

Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (3H) on desk

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)

It seemed that the apps on larger screens were what mattered the most to Google. When we mention a big screen device, most of us think of a big screen device with an operating system like Android, but that device was actually a Chromebooks. Or even a computer.

When it comes to using an app made for a phone-sized display on a Chrome OS device, there are the same difficulties and issues as there are with any other phone or tablet. For the most part, the majority of the apps on the internet work on a Chromebooks.

There is a difference between working and working well.

The company tried to address this by releasing an overpriced Chrome Tablet so developers could spend too much money fixing issues that nobody was experiencing. About 80% of the world's smartphones are powered by Android, which is the most popular phone operating system. When you compare the number of people buying a device and the number of people using it, you have very few people buying a device.

Developers should take the time to make their end- users happy with their work. Spending time and money refining a phone app is what that means. Everyone reading this has an app on their phone that they use a lot, and like what the developer has done with it. Every app developer wants to be the person behind the app you love.

Think of the foldables!

I can hear some people thinking about foldables.

They will be the future of the phone once they can be mass-produced at affordable prices. Until then folding phones, whether they flip, flop, fold, or roll, are not driving the app ecosystems. The cheap and plain slab of glass is still the market for most of the world.

Is a Pixel Tablet enough?

Pixel Tablet

(Image credit: Google)

I don't know. That is the million-dollar question, isn't it? If I were to guess, I would say that developers will still take bigger screens more seriously, even if there is a new device. It might serve as a teaching tool for the company, but it's too late. Three years ago was needed for it to have a chance to make a difference.

If developers want to work onOptimizing for larger screens, they can already buy a great tablet fromSamsung, which means consumers can also buy a great tablet. They come at a number of price points, so anyone can get one. The Tab S series may be the best of the bunch, but there are plenty of other options.

A Pixel tablet isn't going to make developers care more than a Galaxy Tab S does.

Another option is for the company to become heavy-handed, piss off all of its hardware partners, and force developers to build foldable apps. The iPad proves that it works.

Apple would not get away with doing it as easily as Google would. Apple has a relatively low market share and this allows it to slide around anti-competition legislation. There will be no blowback from phone manufacturers because Apple is the only hardware customer.

When Apple made the iPad ecosystem work the way it does, it was impossible for Google to do the same.

We can fix it and we will

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3

(Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

Our wallet is what will work. Application developers will always try to build things they like. That is what they should be doing. If you have never done it before, building apps and writing software only sounds like an easy way to make a living, and the saying about working smarter not harder says developers should worry about the products most of us are using.

The products are regular and small. Some are cheap, some are outrageously expensive, but they all have the same aspect ratios and are designed to be used in only two orientations.

The smartphone industry will shift to large screens when we start buying them and not a minute sooner.

I think it will change one day, and we will be using phones that fold or flip open into tablets or tablets that fold into phones. The convenience is already there and you can have a device that is easy to use on the subway as well as one that works great for watching videos on the couch, and it is the same device.

We will see a foldable market eventually, as phone makers care about it. It will be easy for a developer to care about the larger screen of his or her app because everyone is using it.

When the time comes, we hope that is the case.