Google finally doing gestures "the right way" with Android Q!

Google finally doing gestures
You know what they say — modern problems require modern solutions. One such problem was created once phone manufacturers began to shrink phone bezels more and more and extending the screens all the way up and down the devices' "foreheads" and "chins". No room for home buttons, no room for capacitive touch screens... so, how do we navigate these new all-screen devices?

There's, of course, the classic method of having an on-screen navbar. But there's also the cooler and more fluid "navigation gestures" mode. Apple did it, Samsung did it, Huawei did it, and yes — even Google did it.

But hey, Google always needs to be a little different. So, its version of the "gestures control" was to replace the virtual home button with a "home pill", leave the back button intact, and remove the "recent apps" button. Not a lot of people loved that choice — it basically still left a navbar at the bottom of the screen and one that looked assymetrical at that. Not to mention, the gestures didn't feel fluid or intuitive, but a bit clumsy and jarring.

That's not to say everyone hated it, but the people that did definitely had legitimate reasons to.

With Android Q, Google is finally "fixing" gesture controls!


There's a new option in Settings → System → Gestures and it's called "Fully Gestural Navigation". It will get rid of the virtual navbar at the bottom and only leave a thin strip there. From now on, swiping up from the bottom is "home", swiping up and holding is "recent apps" cartwheel, swiping left or right across the thin strip will switch between apps quickly (a-la "Alt+Tab). Swiping in from the side of the screen (either left or right) is "back".




So, the new gestures look like a mixture of iOS' controls and the very popular Android app called Fluid Navigation Gestures. And we'd say Google did it right this time around — it feels really nice to control a Pixel now.



Those of you that are fans of the "home pill" mode will still get to pick it (at least it's still present in the current beta) and even the old school navigation bar is still an option. Which one will you go for?

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30 Comments

1. chris2k5

Posts: 249; Member since: Nov 17, 2012

You mean the Apple way. This is blatant rip off down to the bar and animation

2. Kdk2020

Posts: 42; Member since: Apr 27, 2016

Well said. I own a pixel and using it now feels like an iPhone. Google have become the same thing they swore to destroy

13. AngelicusMaximus

Posts: 696; Member since: Dec 20, 2017

Can you show us where Google "swore to destroy" anyone? I remember Jobs saying that about Android. I definitely don't remember the opposite happening.

3. Leo_MC

Posts: 7432; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Why would you have a problem with Google doing gestures the Apple way, if that is the better way?

5. MINDoSOUL

Posts: 322; Member since: Feb 28, 2014

No way it's the better way!. Any gesture navigation app in the Google play store is way better than Apple and Google implementation. What annoys me the most about their implementation is seeing the line strip in the bottom why does it have to be visible, do they think by any chance I forgot how to swipe from the bottom. Both Apple and Google need to give us the option to make the line strip invisible.

12. Leo_MC

Posts: 7432; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

I have used some gestures navigation apps on my Android phones and they all suck; I don't want one that it's better than Apple's, I just a similar one - can you give a few names (except xda ng, edge g, g control, fluid, which all suck big time) so I can check them out?

23. drunkenjay

Posts: 1671; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

as a previous apple user, the iphone gestures were one of the best.

24. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1421; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

Well that's the beauty of Android, you've got options. You're not limited to doing things just one way, because someone decided that's how it should be done for everyone.

30. Leo_MC

Posts: 7432; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

When I'm off to buy a detergent I don't look for options, I look for the brand detergent that cleans my clothes.

8. applesnapple93

Posts: 304; Member since: Jan 06, 2016

the gesture navigations sound like an absolute nightmare. Its optional from app to app to decide what swiping from the side of the screen does, either bringing up a side bar menu or to go back...

9. blingblingthing

Posts: 963; Member since: Oct 23, 2012

Sorry, but didn't blackberry do this (gestures in general) first? Why didn't we say the blackberry way?

14. bucknassty

Posts: 1337; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

what about Palm???

26. iloveapps

Posts: 855; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

Blackberry is dead.

20. dnomadic

Posts: 415; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

You mean the palm Way or the BlackBerry way. Their gesture navigations were well before Google and Apple’s implementation and that old Palm Pre was pretty fluid considering the hardware powering it.

25. Vancetastic

Posts: 1316; Member since: May 17, 2017

More like the WebOS way...

4. iloveapps

Posts: 855; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

Now who’s copying now. Apple’s gestures implementation is the best. Its just like touch pad in macs.

10. blingblingthing

Posts: 963; Member since: Oct 23, 2012

Are you using the word implementation to hide the fact that Apple copied blackberry?

27. iloveapps

Posts: 855; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

So are you saying that Samsung is copying apple’s product. iPhone to galaxy, ipad to tab, apple watch to galaxy watch, airpods to buds, siri to Bixby, apple pay to samsung pay, HomePod to galaxy home, what else im missing? One thing that they can’t copy is that profit.

28. oldskool50

Posts: 1550; Member since: Mar 29, 2019

Galaxy Watch existed before the Apple Watch by a full 3 years. And even after 3 years of delay, the Apple Watch was worse than Samsungs first Gear. 3 years later, the Gear was already cellular capable the Apple Watch didnt even have. Samsung has even been making headphones for their own phones for years. And they bought HK and included better ones. The iCon X existed before the Buds. They are the same but without the Icon X extras. Android had pay services before APPLE. SAMSUNG pay is better than Apple Pay because it uses NFC and Magstrip. I can use SP at far an away more places. ApplePod which only work with Apple product is DOA. HomePod works with BT and more. Google understands that making a product available to everyone leads to better products. Same as Microsoft. You to busy being a dumb fan than a smart consumer. Being hooked on a name, when all they are known for is ruining the lives of many is sad.

6. Chris_ABN

Posts: 192; Member since: May 16, 2018

I'll never use gustures.

7. middlehead

Posts: 457; Member since: May 12, 2014

There are one or two gestures that actually feel right to me and I'll use, but if they ever try to force gesture only they're dead to me.

11. blingblingthing

Posts: 963; Member since: Oct 23, 2012

More screen space

29. oldskool50

Posts: 1550; Member since: Mar 29, 2019

My navi bar disappears when I'm not using it. So what more space are u referring roo. And with screens as. If as they are, you aren't t really gain much.

15. TBomb

Posts: 1484; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

Not a fan of gestures for navigation, but super excited that there will be the choice! Choice is always a plus in my book.

16. Valdomero

Posts: 677; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

Hope Apple didn't patented the gestures... if they did well, a big filthy sue is on their way.

21. dnomadic

Posts: 415; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Can’t patent WebOs, LG owns it.

17. jeffpom

Posts: 66; Member since: Dec 11, 2016

Apple was slow to the multitasking, but they got it right. Apple got gestures right (for the most part.) It's good to see Android Q doing it the "Apple Way" - but I do like that they allow for customization. (The Android Way.) The only problem is - so much customization is overwhelming and confusing for the overwhelming majority of phone users. A significant portion of the population has no clue how to operate these things. This is sad, because the very things people complain about - they can do. LOL

18. xocomaox

Posts: 200; Member since: Dec 14, 2015

I prefer the implementation OnePlus has done. It's so basic and easy, but can be very powerful.

19. inFla

Posts: 113; Member since: Aug 17, 2018

Not the right way, the way the article writer personally wants it.

22. Plutonium239

Posts: 1215; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

I prefer to have a navigation bar. No particular way is the "best" or "right" way. It's all about user preference. The correct way for Google and Apple to do this is to provide different options.

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