iPhone apps can have a tab bar at the bottom of the screen and the tabs can have badges such as Notifications (3) and Tasks (12). This is fine for the iPhone, but what should we do when we build the same app for Android phones? Android tells us to put our primary navigation in a drawer -- and that's fine in most cases, but not so good when you want users to always be aware of new notifications, tasks, etc.
I considered moving the tab bar to the top of the Android screen (like FaceBook), but that's not ideal for reasons I won't go into.
If I move the tabs into a drawer for Android phones, is there any way to alert users that new notifications, tasks, etc, exist? For example, I'd like to alert users about new stuff as soon as they navigate to the app. And I'd like to alert users about new stuff even if they're in a different part of the app. Is this possible? Could I use the status bar area to alert users?