The Blade's interaction methods differ significantly from traditional touchscreen Android devices. It is particularly important to keep these considerations in mind when designing the User Interface of an application intended to run on this device. Existing applications which heavily leverage touchscreen interactions do not translate well to the Blade. This is due to the fact that the transitional touchscreen UI is leveraging taps for input based on specific screen coordinates, which is not possible with the Blade’s interaction methods.
The Blade features a two-axis touchpad with single or double-finger tracking gestures for predefined actions. The horizontal swipe gestures can be leveraged for left/right navigation and the vertical swipes can be leveraged for the up/down navigation.
The touchpad is implemented as a trackball device, and methods such as dispatchTrackballEvent() and onTrackballEvent() can be used to capture and process the raw touchpad events.
As a fallback, if you do not handle the trackball events in your application, the touchpad will fire KEYCODE_DPAD events which can be captured with standard Android methods.
Refer Android KeyEvent documentation for details on KEYCODE_DPAD events. https://developer.android.com/reference/android/view/KeyEvent.html.
Note that the Home gesture cannot be intercepted or modified. This is an expected Android behavior.
Available Gestures and Taps:
One-Finger Tap = Select when Blade is awake. When Blade is sleeping it turns on the display.
One-Finger Swipe Forward = Forward
One-Finger Swipe Backward = Back
One-Finger Swipe Up = Up
One-Finger Swipe Down = Down
One-Finger Hold for one second = Activate the app menu(if available), on Keyboard it shows the char's menu
Two-Finger Tap = Back or Return.
Two-Finger Hold for one second = Home
Two-Finger Swipe Back = Backspace, on keyboard deletes the previous character
Two-Finger Swipe Forward = Delete action depends on the app (if available); on Keyboard it is a space input.
Two-Finger Slide Up = Volume up
Two-Finger Slide Down = Volume down
Two-Finger Slide Down and hold= Mute
KeyCodes for available taps and gestures:
ONE FINGER TAP: Select
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_ENTER
ONE FINGER HOLD FOR 1 SECOND: Menu
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_MENU
TWO FINGER TAP: Back or Return
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_BACK
TWO FINGER SWIPE FORWARD: Delete
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_FORWARD_DEL
TWO FINGER SWIPE BACKWARD: Backspace
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_DEL
TWO FINGER UP: Volume up
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_VOLUMEUP
TWO FINGER DOWN: Volume down
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_VOLUMEDOWN
TWO FINGER DOWN and hold: Mute
Key Event Fired: KEYCODE_VOLUME_MUTE
With the release of version 2.13 of the Blade OS, users can now configure their touchpad to act as a virtual mouse.
Enable this by selecting "Mouse" mode in Settings > Device > Touchpad.
Swipe with one finger to move the cursor.
Tap with one finger to click the screen at the cursor.
Swipe with two fingers to scroll the view.
Tap with two fingers to go back.
Next: UI Best Design Practices