5 cool non-Google apps that support Android Nougat's launcher shortcuts
With the arrival of the new Pixel phones, Google also outed the latest Android 7.1 Nougat update - that's the one which actually brings the most exciting user-oriented Nougat features to market, not the 7.0 stuff we've had until now. One of these options are the so-called app shortcuts, and attempt to mimic what displays equipped with Synaptics' ClearForce display technology can do.
Apple has implemented the ClearForce tech under the commercial name 3D Touch and Huawei outed it as Force Touch. Either way, what it does is sense how hard you are pressing the screen, and react accordingly, whether it is a lighter push, or a harder press. With the App shortcuts option of Android 7.1 Nougat, Google is trying to emulate the experience on every Android phone with the Google Now launcher, not only the exclusive Pixels. Thus, when you long-press on an icon, a popup menu with options appears that offers shortcuts to the most used functions of the app, so you don't have to constantly go in.
The only feedback you are getting here is a slight move from the vibration motor, and there is only one level of pressure that can be applied, but in general app shortcuts work pretty well for those who want quick access to their most used functions straight from the app icon. Needless to say, most of the stock Google apps already take advantage of the App shortcuts API, but there will be an increasing number of third-party developers that do as well. Here are some of the early birds that support Nougat's App Shortcuts option.