Thursday, December 10, 2015

Instagram adds "3D Touch" features to Android phones

One of the great new features of the iPhone 6S generation is the 3D Touch pressure sensing technology. Now, Instagram shows that you can use similar features to improve their app even on non pressure sensing Android smartphones.

The 3D Touch technology on the iPhone 6S and iOS 9 allows apps to provide easily accessible shortcuts in apps - though it will take a while for people to "get used to it" (a bit like what happened with the right mouse click context menus). But some of its features can also be simulated by carefully mastering the time you're touching the screen.

Instagram was one of the first companies to implement 3D Touch in their iOS app, and now it brings similar features to their Android app. In this case, as most Android devices don't have pressure sensing capabilities, the trick is done by detecting a slightly longer press, and providing a similar "popup view" that also gives you access to most common functions while pressing on the screen.

Even though it isn't really a 3D Touch (you can't press any harder to launch yet another action, like you can on the iPhone 6S) it shows that you can get pretty close, and improve your app interaction even in non 3D Touch enabled devices.

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