When releasing apps for current generations of Apple iPhone, iPad, and iPod devices, software developers are required to use a certain set of images meeting Apple’s strict Custom Icon and Image Creation Guidelines. As a bare minimum, developers need an application icon and a launch image. However, Apple recommends that apps provide quite a few extra images, such as an icon used by iOS when showing Spotlight search results and Settings. Apps that can handle certain file types (such as documents, tunes, or video formats) will require icons to represent their supported file types. Most apps will also require a fair share of graphics to draw their navigation bars, tab bars and toolbars.
As a rule of thumb, Apple imposes stringent requirements on how to draw these icons so that every app running on the iPhone, iPad, or iPod platform conforms to common specifications and visual guidelines. Specifications ensure that your app looks in line with apps offered by Apple and other developers.
Designing Icons for the Retina Display
Apple’s innovative super-high density Retina display packs more pixels into a small area than was possible just a few years ago. These high-definition displays allow showing the highest definition graphics to create crisp images with the feel of dimensionality and depth. As such, Retina displays will naturally require higher resolution icons to be employed in navigation bars, toolbars, and tab bars. Texture-reach, detailed, and more realistic images with small elements and carvings will create the most pleasing effect of three-dimensionality and depth. To display good graphics on Retina displays, developers need their icons in resolutions of up to 60×60 pixels.
Icons for Navigation Bars, Toolbars, and Tab Bars
While, generally, apps can use graphics in any reasonable size or resolution, there are a few common sizes your icons must include in order for the system to display them properly in navigation bars, toolbars, and tab bars.
For iPhone and iPod touch toolbar and navigation bars, Apple specifies the icon sizes of 20 x 20 pixels (standard resolution) and 40 x 40 pixels (high resolution, for Retina displays). Toolbar and navigation bars in iPad apps employ 20 x 20 pixel versions exclusively.
Tab bar icons shall come in two sizes. 30 x 30 pixel versions are used in tab bars displayed in iPad, iPhone and iPod touch apps in standard resolution. In addition, iPhone and iPod touch apps with the Retina display will benefit from using super-sized images in sizes of 60 x 60 pixels.
Stock Icons for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Navigation Bars, Toolbars, and Tab Bars
Aha-Soft provides a collection of ready-made royalty-free icons conforming to Apple’s navigation bar, toolbar and tab bar guidelines. App Tab Bar Icons for iPhone provide a simple way to produce great-looking navigation bars, toolbars, and tab bars in iPhone, iPad, and iPod apps. 120 unique app icons are provided in all standard sizes of 20×20, 30×30, 40×40, and 60×60 pixels. Each image is provided in black and white versions. Raster PNG and PSD files and scalable vector AI, SVG, and PDF sources are supplied.
Do you want to make pictograms yourself? Read more at iconeditor.info