This week's book giveaway is in the OO, Patterns, UML and Refactoring forum. We're giving away four copies of Refactoring for Software Design Smells: Managing Technical Debt and have Girish Suryanarayana, Ganesh Samarthyam & Tushar Sharma on-line! See this thread for details.
The article suggests the Nexus 10 because of its size and pixel density would allow it to emulate almost any combination you would need to test. That isn't true anymore, there are a couple XXHDPI devices out there now (Nexus 5 and Xperia Z for example). The Nexus 10 now doesn't have the density to emulate this relatively new density. I have been waiting for the new Nexus 10 to come out, but honestly I don't think it will until the next Android release - probably not until after the holidays.
So is there a good, XXHDPI, preferably 9-11 inch tablet out there I could use this trick on? Ideally one with not a lot of bloat ware (Samsung, I am looking at you!), but honestly it is mostly about the screen for me right now. Any suggestions?
AVDs are okay for initial tests, but there are limitations:
1) Size/quality of the development machines screen: it isn't as dense as the phones, so you don't get a good feel for what the display will look like, but some down-graded version for high-res screens. Or you don't scale so you get the quality but not the physical size. It ends up being toss between size in pixels (no scaling, screens are too big) and size in inches (screen is scaled down and you don't get the quality). But I can only get the both size in pixels and size in inches on the less dense formats
2) Performance - the AVDs are sloow. I think they tend to be buggy (have had multiple issues usually associated with timing and display of the UI or network connections that don't reproduce on real hardware even as old a the original Moto Droid). Debugging on them is harder to, as they tend to spam logs with issues about accounts, and screen painting, and such. A lot of this can be filtered out, but running on real hardware never causes the spam, and so requires less work to get good logs.
3) Gesture and touch target testing: Hard to do on a screen, and doesn't quite get you the right feel
Testing on a single high-end (and to get XXHDPI I would guess the system would be high end) isn't the best idea, since it won't bring up compatibility, timing, memory, etc... issues. But I have 4 generations of devices to test on beside this sort of thing, so it would be mainly to just test visuals and interaction on various densities and sizes I don't cover with the other devices.