3G Watchdog app for Android monitors your 4G/3G/Edge/GPRS data usage

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 THE DOG'S BLOG


What’s new in 3G Watchdog Pro 1.19.x

Written by Richard. Posted in Blog

– Version 1.19.0 introduced a new “Holo” look.
– Versions 1.19.1 and 1.19.2 fixed size problems on Widgets.
– 1.19.2 also fixed a problem with the “data mobile switch” widget not longer being available on some tablets since 1.19.0.

New “Holo” look 

With time Android design guidelines have evolved and since version 3.0 (Honeycomb) the “Holo” style, including both visual and ergonomics recommendations, has become the official style.
 
Even if we (and many other users) liked the cartoonish style of the old user interface, we felt that it was important for the user experience to comply with these new rules, because consistency and the respect of some common rules help the user to navigate between the different applications.
 
A number of customers also encouraged us to move to the Holo look. This site came as far as to produce a mock up of how 3GWP would look with a Holo design. And actually this turned out to be our main source of inspiration, thanks to Ricardo Monteiro who designed the mock-up.
 
The Holo style is normally available since Android 3.0. By using a compatibility library we were also able to support Android version since 2.1. However older versions of Android (notably 1.5 and 1.6) are no longer supported. You can still use older versions (< 1.19.0) of 3GW on these platforms. Please note that on versions < 3.0 some visual components of the Android interface (buttons, checkboxes, etc…) will keep their old, pre-Holo look. Only the action bar (explained below) and tabs will fully behave and look “Holo”. 
 
This move also offered an opportunity to make the interface somewhat clearer and more consistent (without big changes to avoid getting existing users lost!).
 
So what changed in 1.19.x? Only the user interface. No function was added or removed.

Action bar & period Tabs

The first and most important change is the introduction of the Action bar.
 
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The Action bar is one of the pillars of the Holo design. This is the green band at the top with the 3GW icon. It is visible in every screen of the application and displays from left to right: 

– the application icon,
– the screen title (“Usage”),
– shortcut icons for the main available actions (“refresh” and “history” on this image). Previously in 3GW these actions were accessible via buttons at the bottom of the screen.
– the menu button (3 vertical dots, not visible on this image) to show the action menu – it will be visible only if your device has no physical menu button.
 
–> More details about the Action bar in this Google document.
 
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The period tabs (Plan /Day / Week / Month) will be consistently present in all 3GW screens, except the Settings screen. Depending on the size and orientation of the screen the bar will appear under (like in the above image) or in the action bar. How and where the tabs are displayed is dynamically decided by the Android system, not by the application.
 
As before, you can switch from one period type (tab) to the other by tapping on the tab or by swiping left or right on the screen. 

Themes 

3GW has been internally reorganized to use themes. A theme is a collection of visual elements working together to give a certain look to the application. 
 
Currently two themes are defined: dark and light. We will probably add new ones in the future.
 
Here is how the main report screen looks in light style…
 
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… and here is how it looks in dark style:
 
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Note that the settings screen is theme-independent and has always a dark look:
 
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The default theme is the light theme if you are a new user, dark if you upgrade from a previous version.
You can change the current theme in 3GW Settings > Look & Feel > Theme. Exit and relaunch the application to allow for the change to be taken into account.
 

Notification icons

The old notification icons:
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were too small to be readable on certain devices / versions of Android (e.g. Nexus 7 with Jelly Bean), so we redesigned them to be simpler and larger, here is the new set (may look smaller than old icons on this page, but they are actually larger when displayed in the status bar) :
 
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(the last one represents an undetermined state)
 
This change applies only to devices running Android 3.0+. Devices with older versions of Android will still use the old icons.
 
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Richard

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