Resizable Apps & Multi-Window Support in Android

Mar 30 2021 · Kotlin 1.4, Android 11, Android Studio 4

Part 1: Resizable Apps & Multi-Window Support in Android

01. Learn About Multi-Window Support

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Notes: 01. Learn About Multi-Window Support

Prerequisites for this course are Android Studio 4, Kotlin 1.4 and either a physical device that can run Android 5 (API 21) or above, or an emulator with the same support.

Having intermediate Android and Kotlin development knowledge is extremely helpful, however the course focuses on multi-window support, so it’s not necessary.

Transcript: 01. Learn About Multi-Window Support

App users nowadays really want to use their time and their devices to full extent. This means that if they get the ability to work on multiple things at the same time, they’ll try to multi-task and combine their apps.

Android supports this behavior, by allowing you to run multiple apps at the same time, and organize them in multiple windows, using the resizable app support.

Resizable apps are apps that you can use in multi-window and split-screen modes. These apps work in parallel with one another, and you effectively have multiple apps that are started, but only one app is focused and in the resumed state.

This is great because you can update data in both apps at the same time, or use one app to affect the data of the other app, through different Android features. It’s a pretty cool system feature, that you can use to allow your users to multi-task more freely and easily.

Another awesome thing with resizable apps is that you can react to different types of configuration changes, when you enter the split-screen mode, resize each app and more.

Through this, you can change your layout, layout managers for lists, show or hide UI options and more. Basically, any change that helps the user navigate the split-screened apps.

Another amazing feature of the multi-window mode is the ability to efficiently use the Drag & Drop feature to transfer data from one app to another. You can use Drag & Drop to move data in your app, but it’s much more useful when you get to transfer data from one app to another.

Using this feature, you can send image URLs, text and even complex objects between apps, provided that these apps support the drop part of the feature.

When dropping UI elements, the receiving app has to expect the data and parse it to use it, but if it’s a general piece of information, such as an image URL, then it’s much easier to add this support.

You’ll add all of these features in this course in just a few episodes! You’ll add resizable app support, listen to the lifecycle and configuration changes, and finally, you’ll add drag & drop support.

It’s a really neat and simple feature to implement, but it can help your users a lot!