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Advanced software helps iPad mini ignore unintended touches near bezel

post #1 of 50
Thread Starter 
When Apple announced the iPad mini on Tuesday, it made special note of the thin bezel surrounding the device's 7.9-inch screen, a design feature that caused some concern as it may welcome inadvertent touch events during one-handed use.

In order to deal with the thinner bezels, Apple is employing advanced touchscreen software that ignores unintended touch events, such as hitting the side of the display when reading an e-book.

Where the 9.7-inch iPad uses symmetrical bezels around its edges, the iPad mini boasts a design more akin to an iPhone or iPod, with large bezels at the top and bottom of the device and thin bezels flanking the screen. It is thought that Apple needed to enlarge the space above and below the display in order to fit the front-facing FaceTime HD camera and home button.

iPad mini Touches
Source: Apple


From Apple's iPad mini webpage:

For iPad mini, we reduced the width of the bezels on two sides of the display. So although the screen is smaller, it?s even more prominent. Rethinking the screen meant we also had to rethink the software behind it. iPad mini intelligently recognizes whether your thumb is simply resting on the display or whether you?re intentionally interacting with it. It?s the kind of detail you?ll notice ? by not noticing it.


It is unclear how the touchscreen heuristics work, or if they are effective, but Apple seems confident in its software-based solution.
post #2 of 50

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

post #3 of 50
I'm quite sure you can manage.
post #4 of 50
Originally Posted by BadFlounder View Post
I'm quite sure you can manage.

 

I'm quite sure developers shouldn't have to.

post #5 of 50
You don't 'have' to, you can simply ignore the mini and not develop to it. Or you can embrace the growing market base, change your code, and sell me apps.

I know, I know, tough life. It is on parallel with the great tragedies of this world.

http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/tech-talk-iphone-5/1420759/
post #6 of 50
Go develop somewhere else then.
Like the android market
post #7 of 50
Go develop somewhere else then.
Like the android market
post #8 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

I'm quite sure developers shouldn't have to.

They go out of their way to make sure apps already written for the ipad2 will run on it, what else do want? How about a little cheese to go with that whine?

Crying? No, I am not crying. I am sweating through my eyes.
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Crying? No, I am not crying. I am sweating through my eyes.
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post #9 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

I know that you're not fond of the iPad Mini, something which you've stated more than a few times. But now that it's been revealed and we know that it is an actual product, I guess that you'll just have to accept that it's for real and that it's going to sell like hotcakes. You will be one of the few people who fails to see the value of the iPad Mini, IMO. The 9.7" iPads are great, but I do see the value of having a smaller sized iPad also. It's so damn light, and there are many people out there who would appreciate a smaller and lighter iPad.

post #10 of 50
When I first heard about this, I wondered if Apple was able to extend the touch sensor to be beyond the display and into the bezel. If so, it might be able to detect touches that came from a finger overlapping the bezel and the display as opposed to a touch directly to the display. Apps wouldn't need to be modified because the apps wouldn't need to know about the extra touch area ... it would all be handled by the OS.
post #11 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.


You always have to think design anyways.  You're still monitoring for the touchdown event that iOS sends.  You don't have to do anything special.  Now if you put a button that resides right against the bezel, you'll have to just test that theory.  Sounds to me like Apple set it up so that it can more distinguish the difference between a finger tapping a control vs. one's thumb resting on the bezel.  Either way, you just monitor for the correct touch event.

post #12 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Where the 9.7-inch iPad uses symmetrical bezels around its edges...

 

They are not symmetrical, in landscape they are slightly wider, and for design reasons. Yes, I'm talking about the full-size iPad.

Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #13 of 50
I have to decide.. ipad mini $329 or ipad 3 for #379... that's a tough one....
post #14 of 50
BTW, thanks Apple. Christmas shopping is done!
post #15 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jecaron View Post

I have to decide.. ipad mini $329 or ipad 3 for #379... that's a tough one....

 

Not a hard choice, IMO. It all depends on what you're going to use it for mainly.

 

If you're going to be bringing it with you outside a lot, like using it on your commute, reading on a train or subway etc., then get the iPad Mini, as it's much smaller, lighter and easier to hold with one hand.

 

If you're mainly going to be using it at home, then I would get the Retina iPad.

 

Or just pop by an Apple store and look at the two side by side. It shouldn't be too hard to figure out. Only you know what you intend to do with them.

post #16 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

 

Wrong. What a ridiculous assumption.

Doesn't sound like you're actually a developer. Or certainly not a very good one. You can't even comprehend what the second sentence in the article means.


Edited by isaidso - 10/23/12 at 5:01pm
post #17 of 50
This is not a new feature of iOS. It works the same on my iPod Touch 4G, still running iOS 5.1.1. There's a margin of about 1/4" on each side that is insensitive, provided the touch region extends to the edge (I can still activate UI elements that lie completely within that zone as long as I don't slop over the edge too far). I don't have my iPad handy but would be surprised if it wasn't the same (perhaps with a larger margin).
post #18 of 50
Quote:
iPad mini intelligently recognizes whether your thumb is simply resting on the display or whether you’re intentionally interacting with it.

But will your thumb go...

from here...

 

to here?

 

1biggrin.gif

post #19 of 50

Yeah, I can afford the full sized 3, but am getting the Mini just because I don't need a 10" iPad. Now there are some uses where you need a 10" one, but for what I will be using it for, the Mini is fine.

 

 


Tim Cook using Galaxy Tabs as frisbees

 

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Tim Cook using Galaxy Tabs as frisbees

 

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post #20 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

Yes—the details are unknown (and I wouldn’t get too upset about unknowns yet) but the article does suggest to me that IF your app depends critically on very small buttons RIGHT at the edge of the screen, which people use by tapping right on the border between screen and bezel, and if those buttons need to respond to a long press (like a resting thumb) as opposed to a normal quick tap, then you’ll have to change that zany scheme OR rely in Apple’s own software to tell the difference, since, as the article says, Apple’s doing that work for you automatically. (And iOS has always done all kinds of automatic “finger helping” behind the scenes—whether we noticed or not.)

 

But if you do decide to change your long-press edge-buttons, you’re free to change them for ALL models, and I recommend that. You’re not required to change it just for the Mini, so make it easy on yourself!

 

Remember that we all survived the unsettling change to pull-down notifications. This should be even easier to live with.

post #21 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jecaron View Post

I have to decide.. ipad mini $329 or ipad 3 for #379... that's a tough one....

Save your money and invest in this new # currency you speak of ;-)

Nah, seriously, get the iPad 3, it's retina display make it my favourite product I've ever owned in any category. I have it 6 months now and love it just as much as day 1. I'm in love with it. The display is AWESOME!!!
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #22 of 50
I need this software feature on my iPhone 5.
post #23 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

 

Wrong. What a ridiculous assumption.

Doesn't sound like you're actually a developer. Or certainly not a very good one. You can't even comprehend what the second sentence in the article means.

 

Notice the conditional "I'd" - a contraction of "I would" - implying that "as" means "if I were". So no, he's not claiming to be one - if he were he would have written "now I'll have to make sure...".

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Odysseus1923 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post

 

Wrong. What a ridiculous assumption.

Doesn't sound like you're actually a developer. Or certainly not a very good one. You can't even comprehend the second sentence in the article means.

 

Don't worry he is not. He has no idea what he is talking about as he is purely an Apple troll.

 

An Apple troll criticizing Apple then? Very strange.

post #24 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Hmm. Another wrong thing to do. As a developer, now I'd have to make sure I don't have anything actually being used in that space… and only on one model.

Perhaps you should set aside your antipathy for the iPad Mini for long enough to read the article you're responding to.

The article specifically says that the OS can tell the difference between a 'real' touch and an incidental touch - so the developer shouldn't have to worry about it.

Now, it is reasonable to ask how well it will work, but ignoring the entire article isn't very useful.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
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post #25 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

I'm quite sure developers shouldn't have to.

 

I'm quite sure developers won't have to. 

"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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post #26 of 50

yeah like double posting multiple android markets

post #27 of 50

That's no surprise that they'd come up with something like this, even I thought of this. I don't know if the bezels are touch sensitive to allow this (I doubt it), but touch-sensitive bezels (or entire casing) is the next logical step in the evolution of the platform, so that the device is aware of how it's being hold.

 

I'm waiting for the day that the tablet has the same slim bezel all around.

 

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post #28 of 50
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post
You can't even comprehend what the second sentence in the article means.

 

Let's see. I'm reading it as: "You know that nice little 'tap the side of the screen to flip the page' thing you've always been able to do when reading an eBook? You can't do that anymore. At least, not on the iPad mini." 


Originally Posted by jragosta View Post
The article specifically says that the OS can tell the difference between a 'real' touch and an incidental touch - so the developer shouldn't have to worry about it.

 

Is there documentation as to the process by which this decision is made? Seems that they could have easily avoided this problem by having a wider bezel. 

post #29 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Originally Posted by isaidso View Post
You can't even comprehend what the second sentence in the article means.

 

Let's see. I'm reading it as: "You know that nice little 'tap the side of the screen to flip the page' thing you've always been able to do when reading an eBook? You can't do that anymore. At least, not on the iPad mini." 


Originally Posted by jragosta View Post
The article specifically says that the OS can tell the difference between a 'real' touch and an incidental touch - so the developer shouldn't have to worry about it.

 

Is there documentation as to the process by which this decision is made? Seems that they could have easily avoided this problem by having a wider bezel. 

 

I'll bet you can still turn the pages like that - i.e. it can tell the difference between an edge tap and just touching near the edge incidentally to holding it. Clever if it works.

post #30 of 50
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post
Clever if it works.

 

Agreed. Important if, though.

post #31 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Let's see. I'm reading it as: "You know that nice little 'tap the side of the screen to flip the page' thing you've always been able to do when reading an eBook? You can't do that anymore. At least, not on the iPad mini." 

 

FUD.  For that to happen they would have had to disable all touch events on the side of the screen.  

 

They clearly do not and instead do the same thing they do for trackpads to avoid spurious inputs.

post #32 of 50
Originally Posted by nht View Post
FUD.  For that to happen they would have had to disable all touch events on the side of the screen.  

 

Which you know, having used the iPad mini.


They clearly do not and instead do the same thing they do for trackpads to avoid spurious inputs.

 

Oh, yes, and that works well, since I can't use the designated gesture to bring up Notification Center using my trackpad. I didn't even know there was a gesture until I found it accidentally as I was swiping back and forth normally for my Spaces. When the gesture involves "starting off the trackpad" and doesn't work when you don't, formerly 'spurious' inputs become crucial.

post #33 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post

I'll bet you can still turn the pages like that - i.e. it can tell the difference between an edge tap and just touching near the edge incidentally to holding it. Clever if it works.

 

Even without it the page turn event happens on lift not touch.  Which he would have known if he had an iPad to TRY IT ON.

 

For this the simple heuristic is to ignore long taps as spurious and not to animate page turn drag events until a certain distance is reached.  If you have an iPad it's really easy to see this in iBooks.  Put your thumb on the screen edge.  Move it a little and you see it starting the page turn animation based on the slight dragging.  Likewise, put your thumb down on the edge again being careful not to move it to initiate a drag.  Wait a little then pull it off...you get a page turn.

 

So it's easy to see how to ignore these two error cases.  Delay starting the animation of page curls based on dragging/swiping until a certain distance or speed and ignore very long taps.

post #34 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

Which you know, having used the iPad mini.

 

I have an iPad.  Do you?

 

I'm a dev (mostly android but some iOS).  Are you?

 

I KNOW because what you describe is a completely insensitive border area to taps.  It will not be insensitive because too many Apple apps would break so what you wrote is clearly wrong and nothing but FUD.

post #35 of 50
Originally Posted by nht View Post
I have an iPad.  Do you?

 

I'm a dev (mostly android but some iOS).  Are you?


Yes, and yes. Hopefully that'll stop your spamming this crap everywhere.

post #36 of 50

Actually, what the OS probably will do is not send UI events until a certain distance is reached or a certain velocity criteria is met.

 

Meaning your handler for UIPanGestureRecognizer wont fire from spurious thumb events.   Probably it happens on an even lower level where the touchesBegan event is delayed until the heuristics determine it's probably not spurious.

 

From the app developer point of view nothing needs to be changed although in some cases you may want to shorten your animation to handle any timing delay from the actual start of the event if it looks a little jumpy.  I'm thinking the delay won't be noticeable (in the ms range) and things probably don't need to change at all unless you were triggering off the wrong end of a touch event (begin vs end or vice versa) to begin with.

post #37 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


Yes, and yes. Hopefully that'll stop your spamming this crap everywhere.

 

Then why are you so clueless?  Did you not even try to do a tap on iBooks before you wrote your crap?  

 

Do you not understand the HIG requirements for the apps you write?

post #38 of 50
Originally Posted by nht View Post
Did you not even try to do a tap on iBooks before you wrote your crap?  

 

I don't have an iPad mini. I don't think that any sort of tapping I could do would help answer anything here. lol.gif

post #39 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

I'm quite sure developers shouldn't have to.

If it works the way Apple says it does, then you won't have to worry about it.
post #40 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Let's see. I'm reading it as: "You know that nice little 'tap the side of the screen to flip the page' thing you've always been able to do when reading an eBook? You can't do that anymore. At least, not on the iPad mini." 

Is there documentation as to the process by which this decision is made? Seems that they could have easily avoided this problem by having a wider bezel. 

I think you're making a mountain out of a molehill here. Why don't you wait until you get to the Apple store and play with it before you assume the worst?
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