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Dear RIM, Can We Please Get Touch Gestures for BlackBerrys?

blackberry-playbook-lazaridis-demojpg One of the things that really gets me salivating when I watch BlackBerry PlayBook demos is the inclusion of gestures throughout the OS. In the current touch implementation on my BlackBerry Torch I am dying for some better touch gestures. While playing with the latest HP WebOS device I was amazed at the multitude of gestures that the device supports throughout the OS. RIM has added some gestures to the BlackBerry 6 OS but they definitely seem tacked on. I am regularly finding myself having to resort to the back button when a simple gesture or a multi-touch swipe down/up/left/right would do.

That is one of the key features that I hope RIM ports over from the Tablet OS to the BlackBerry phone OS. RIM tried implementing a stop gap measure with action menus if you hold down on the screen but it creates lag in your process by requiring you to hold down on the screen for a few seconds. They also let you swipe between chats and emails but that feature is not across the whole OS. For example, in the WebKit browser you cannot swipe between tabs…

In my dreams I imagine a interface where you can do something like touch the screen with two fingers and then swipe in a certain direction on a radial menu. The PlayBook does have some of these gestures like swiping up and down to switch between apps but I want more. RIM really hooked me early on with their intuitive menus that automatically change based on what the most common next action is. For example, in the messages app if you hit the menu button on an email the first option is to open it. Once the email opens the first menu option is to reply and once you are in the reply screen the first menu option is to send. Its simple yet brilliant. I want some of that simplicity in the touch screen controls… I know that the Torch supports multi-touch controls in the browser but why can’t we get things like a 3 finger swipe down opens the app switcher?

What do you think? Do you find yourself wanting more gestures on your touchscreen BlackBerry?

5 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. Won’t too many gestures be a little confusing?

  2. I actually prefer using the backbutton, but they may as well give you the option. As long as it is just a choice (like keyboard shortcuts) then it is only as confusing as you want it to be…

  3. The BlackBerry torch already supports more touch gestures than any other platform, except maybe the palm pre. I would like to see them build upon the gesture pad app to include swiping symbols to make calls, email, text, open apps, and open/close apps in the home screen and within all applications your.

    • There are a few gestures on the torch but most of them are just left and right. Nothing sophisticated like the Palm Pre. I use GestureFox on my browser and that is the kind of stuff I am talking about.

  4. Add on to last post: and also it would be nice if they could make it where you can tap on an open application symbol to decide which list of apps to open (similar to quick launch/shortcutme) once: favorites, twice: media, etc.

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