Options Menu

The Options menu contains commands that apply globally across the current activity, or can start another activity. They do not apply to a selected item in the content (a Context menu does that).

On most devices, a user presses the MENU button to access the Options menu, as shown in the screenshot below. To close the menu, the user presses MENU again, or presses the BACK button. In fact, to cancel out of any menu, press the BACK button. (Pressing the MENU button or touching outside the menu also works.) Note that how to invoke this menu may be different on different devices.

Each activity activity has its own set of operations and therefore its own Options menu. An application with multiple activities would have a different Options menu for each activity.

For example, in the message list view of an email program, the Options menu might let you search the messages, compose a new message, refresh the list, or change the email settings. The compose view of an email program would have a different Options menu, such as adding a CC field, attaching a file, or discarding the message.

Similarly, Browser uses browser windows to present different web pages to the user. Each window has its own navigation history, equivalent to tabs in a browser in a desktop operating system (such as Windows, Macintosh or Linux). For example, if you did a Google web search in one window of the Android Browser, clicking on a link in the search results displays a web page in that same window, and then pressing BACK would to the search results page. Pressing BACK goes to a previous window only if the current window was launched from that previous window. If the user keeps pressing back, they will eventually leave the browser activity and return Home.

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