Android: What does Holo mean?

Martin Brinkmann
May 6, 2013
Google Android
|
8

When you are browsing the Google Play store for new apps, or reading websites that review Android apps, you will eventually stumble upon the term Holo. Chance is, this will happen frequently. Sometimes, applications have Holo added to their name, at other times, it is listed in the description of the app or as one of its features.

Holo, or Holo theme, is a standard theme for Android apps that Google first introduced with Android 3.0 Honeycomb. The company requires manufacturers to include the unmodified Holo theme in Android 4.0 or higher devices if they want to integrate Android Market on their device. Manufacturers can still ship their devices with their own custom themes to provide users with a unified experience across all devices by that manufacturer.

As far as Holo is concerned it is fair to say that the majority of Android 4.0 or higher devices have the themes built-in so that apps can make use of their resources. The basic idea behind Holo was to reduce (virtually eliminate) the design variance in regards to system themes.

If you are a developer, you have noticed that you do have access to three different Holo themes: Holo Light, Holo Dark and Holo Light with dark action bars. Here are three screenshots that showcase how these themes look like and differ from one another.

If you compare the Holo design to the design of previous Android apps you will notice that it has come a long way since then. Developers can still create their own visual designs so that their apps do not need to look like the apps displayed here at all.

That does not mean that devices running a lower version than Android 3.0 cannot benefit from Holo designed apps as well. Designers can use the resources and styles, or use something like Holo Everywhere instead.

Information about the implementation of themes are available in this introductory blog post at the official Android Developers blog. It addresses several common issues like how developers can use Holo but still support older Android (2.x) systems as well. Additional information are available at the official Styles and Themes guide.

Advertisement

Tutorials & Tips


Previous Post: «
Next Post: «

Comments

  1. Albert said on August 18, 2023 at 1:49 pm
    Reply

    Thanks for the tip Martin.

    It is for these kinds of posts that I follow GHacks.

    1. Mike Williams said on August 26, 2023 at 8:55 pm
      Reply

      What’s up with the generic comment, are you a bot?

  2. Tachy said on August 18, 2023 at 3:23 pm
    Reply

    2G?

    Where on the planet is that still in use? I was forced to give up using my RAZRV3 years ago because 2G was phased out by AT&T.

    1. arbuz said on August 20, 2023 at 5:02 pm
      Reply

      Everywhere 3G has been turned off and you don’t have LTE coverage, and believe me there are many developed countries where this is the case and if it weren’t for 2G you wouldn’t even be able to make a phone call.

    2. Doc Fuddled said on August 31, 2023 at 5:55 pm
      Reply

      Maybe I missed it, but I don’t believe tha term “2G” is in the article. Perhaps you are referring to “AGM G2”??

  3. Tachy said on August 18, 2023 at 3:27 pm
    Reply

    @Martin

    Your website has gone insane.

    When I the post button I then saw my comment posted on a different article page. When I opened this article again, it is here.

    1. Martin P. said on August 31, 2023 at 4:39 pm
      Reply

      @Tachy @Martin Brinkmann

      ” Your website has gone insane. ”

      Same here. Has happened several times.

      1. owl said on September 1, 2023 at 3:42 am
        Reply

        @Tachy,
        @Martin P.,

        For over two weeks now,
        I’ve been seeing “Comments” posted by subscribers appearing in different, unrelated articles.
        https://www.ghacks.net/windows-11-update-stuck-fixed-for-good/#comment-4572991
        https://www.ghacks.net/windows-11-update-stuck-fixed-for-good/#comment-4572951
        For the time being,
        it would be better to specify the “article name and URL” at the beginning of the post.

  4. Anonymous said on August 18, 2023 at 11:17 pm
    Reply

    @tachy a lot of non-phone devices with a sim in them rely on 2G, at least here in europe.
    Usually things reporting usage or errors/alarms on something remote that does not get day to day inspection in person. They are out there in vast numbers doing important work. Reliable, good range. The low datarate is no problem at all in those cases.
    3G is gone or on its last legs everywhere, but this stuff still has too much use to cancel.

    Anyhow, interesting that they would put that in. I can see the point if you suspect a hostile 2G environment (amateur eavesdroppers with laptop, ranging up to professional grade MITM fake towers while “strangely” not getting the stronger crypto voip 4G because it is being jammed, and back down to something as old ‘stingray’ devices fallen into the wrong hands).

    But does this also mean that they have handled and rolled out a fix for that nasty 4G ‘pwn by broadcast’ problem you reported earlier this year? I had 4G disabled due to that, on the off chance that some of the local criminals would buy some cheap chinese gear, download a working exploit and probe every phone in range all over town in the hope of getting into phones of the police.

  5. Andy Prough said on August 19, 2023 at 3:04 am
    Reply

    >”While most may never be attacked in stingrays, it is still recommended to disable 2G cellular connections, especially since it does not have any downsides.”

    The downside would be losing connectivity. I spend a lot of time way out in the countryside where there’s often no service or almost none. My network allows 2G, and I need it sometimes. I have an option on the phone to disable 2G, I may do that when I’m in the city and I have good 5G connectivity, but not out in the country.

    I would imagine that the stingray exploits, like most of the bad things in this world, are probably things you will run into in the crowded big cities.

  6. owl said on August 21, 2023 at 3:40 am
    Reply

    I stopped using it in a mobile (Wi-Fi line) environment, so I’m almost ignorant of the actual situation,
    But the recent reality in Japan makes me realize that “the infrastructure of the web is nothing more than a papier-mâché fiction”.
    https://www.ghacks.net/2023/08/17/google-chrome-to-enable-https-first-by-default-for-all-users/#comment-4572402

    It is already beyond the scope of what an individual can do.
    What we should be aware of is the reality that “governments and those in power want to control the world through the Web”, and efforts to counter (resist and prevent) such ambitions are necessary.

  7. Anonymous said on August 26, 2023 at 9:27 pm
    Reply

    Why do you want people to disable the privacy features? Hmmmmm?

  8. Anonymous said on August 27, 2023 at 2:30 am
    Reply

    Now You: do you plan to keep the Ads privacy features enabled?

    I’d like to tell you, but apparently if you make a post critical of Google, you get censored. * [Editor: removed, just try to bring your opinion across without attacking anyone]

  9. Tachy said on August 27, 2023 at 5:15 am
    Reply

    @Martin

    You website is still psychotic. Comments attach to random stories.

  10. John G. said on August 28, 2023 at 2:46 pm
    Reply

    @Martin please do fix the comments, it’s completely insane commenting here! :[

  11. ECJ said on August 28, 2023 at 5:37 pm
    Reply

    @Martin

    The comments are seriously messed up on gHacks now. These comments are mixed with the article at the below URL.

    https://www.ghacks.net/2023/08/18/android-how-to-disable-2g-cellular-connections-to-improve-security/

    And comments on other articles are from as far back as 2010.

  12. Naimless said on August 29, 2023 at 12:57 am
    Reply

    What does this article has anything to do with all the comments on this article? LOL I think this Websuite is ran by ChatGPT. every article is messed up. Some older comments from 2015 shown up in recant articles, LOL

  13. Paul Knight said on August 31, 2023 at 3:35 am
    Reply

    The picture captioned “Clearing the Android Auto’s cache might resolve the issue” is from Apple Carplay ;)

  14. Anonymous said on August 31, 2023 at 9:57 pm
    Reply

    How about other things that matter:
    Drop survival?
    Screen toughness?
    Degree of water and dust protection?

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.