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How to Use GlassActionBar Library in Android App?

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GlassActionBar is an Android library that adds a glassy look to the action bar. It makes the view behind the action bar translucent, giving it a beautiful aesthetic. It also works with the three most popular action bar implementations: stock (API 11+), ActionBarCompat, and ActionBarSherlock. In this article, we will use the Java programming language to integrate this library into an Android app. A sample GIF is provided below to give you an idea of what we will do in this article.

Step by Step Implementation

Step 1: Create a New Project

To create a new project in Android Studio please refer to How to Create/Start a New Project in Android Studio. Note that select Java as the programming language.

Step 2: Add the library dependency

Navigate to the Gradle Scripts > build.gradle(Module:app), add the library in the dependencies section, and sync the project.

dependencies {
      implementation 'com.github.manuelpeinado.glassactionbar:glassactionbar:0.3.0'

Step 3: Working with the activity_main.xml file

Navigate to the app > res > layout > activity_main.xml and refer to the following code. Below is the code for the activity_main.xml file. 


    <!--This layout contains the main layout below action bar-->
    <!--This LinearLayout contains children in vertical order-->
            android:src="@drawable/gfgicon" />
            android:textAppearance="@android:style/TextAppearance.Medium" />

Step 4: Working with the styles.xml file

Navigate to the app > res > values> styles.xml and refer to the following code. Below is the code for the styles.xml file. 


    <!--Adding background for GlassActionBar-->
    <style name="TranslucentActionBar" parent="android:Widget.ActionBar">
        <item name="android:background">@drawable/ab_transparent</item>

Step 5: Working with the themes.xml file

  • Navigate to the app > res > values
  • Right-click on values and select New > Values Resource File
  • A dialog box will appear now, then add the File Name as themes and press OK.
  • Below is the code for the themes.xml file.


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <style name="AppTheme" parent="android:Theme.Holo.Light">
    <!--Adding translucent theme for glassy effect -->
    <style name="AppTheme.TranslucentActionBar">
        <item name="android:windowActionBarOverlay">true</item>
        <item name="android:actionBarStyle">@style/TranslucentActionBar</item>

Step 6: Working with the AndroidManifest.xml file

Navigate to app > manifests > AndroidManifests.xml  and add Translucent Theme for action bar in the activity. 


Step 7: Working with the file

Go to the file and refer to the following code. Below is the code for the file. 


import android.os.Bundle;
import com.manuelpeinado.glassactionbar.GlassActionBarHelper;
public class MainActivity extends Activity {
    private GlassActionBarHelper helper;
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        // Adding glass action bar view to the activity
        helper = new GlassActionBarHelper().contentLayout(R.layout.activity_main);


Github Repository for the following project can be found here.

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Last Updated : 23 Jul, 2021
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