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Google app teardown gives us a peek at where Google will go with app design

We do not know if or when the Google app will be updated with these changes.

Published onApril 12, 2018

Google Search
  • An APK teardown of the latest Google app update revealed some possible design changes.
  • These changes affect the Google app itself and the Pixel Launcher’s Google Feed.
  • Because they were found in a teardown, these changes are not guaranteed to show up in a future update.

With Google remaining tight-lipped about its future design direction, APK teardowns might provide the best insight into what the search giant might have in store. 9to5Google completed one such teardown with version 7.26 of the Google app and gleaned some noteworthy changes.

The first change is to the search bar, which floats and persists as you move through your Feed. The corners are more rounded than before, with the borders appearing lighter and lacking shadow effects.

The rounded search bar also shows up in Search results, though we do not know if the bar also floats and persists as you scroll.

The Feed itself also received a facelift, with the cards appearing narrower and having more space between them. As a result, the shadows are more noticeable than they are in the current Google app. That could change shortly before the final release, however.

Even the way you navigate looks different from before. Whereas the current Google app only features icons at the bottom carousel, a future version of the app could feature accompanying text that makes it clearer which icons pertain to which sections.

Finally, the More tab features new “Customize Widget” and “Personal Search” options. Currently, you can only access the Personal Search option through an app shortcut.

Moving on to the Pixel Launcher, its Google Feed sees a more drastic visual overhaul. The thicker borders and additional space in-between cards from the Google app transfer over, though we also see a more frosted background. Currently, the Pixel Launcher’s Google Feed is semi-translucent.

Images also receive a design change, with header images covering the full width of a card. Currently, images only go as wide as the accompanying text in the card.

What's coming to Google I/O and how to reserve your seats

The final changes noticed in the teardown include Stocks now in the Services list and a new Reservations menu in Assistant settings, as well as a lack of bubbles when chatting with Assistant.

Keep in mind that all of these changes were found in an APK teardown, so they are not guaranteed to show up in a final release. Seeing what Google is at least working on, perhaps some sort of announcement at Google I/O 2018 would inform us about its future design philosophy.

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