Google has confirmed to Mashable that it will be adding support for 3D Touch-like pressure sensitive displays in Android N. The second Developer Preview of Android N released last week hinted at the company working on adding support for this feature to the OS.
In the change log, Google talked about a feature called ‘Launcher Shortcuts’, which allows apps to create up to five dynamic shortcuts that can be accessed through a gesture. These shortcuts can be used to directly jump into a specific part of an app, so for example, you can directly jump to the tweet compose screen in the official Twitter client for Android using a gesture. Sounds eerily similar to how 3D Touch works on the iPhone, right? Well, that’s because it is Google’s take on 3D Touch.
Below is a quick video of this feature in action thanks to the team over at Phandroid and Nova Launcher’s developer Kevin Barry.
For now, this 3D Touch-like functionality is only available for launchers, though it is likely that Google will expand it before the final release of Android N in Q3-Q4, 2016.
Despite the introduction of 3D Touch, Android will continue to recognise long press as a different press on the screen, as the video above shows.
Even though Android does not natively support 3D Touch, Chinese OEMs like Huawei and Meizu have already released smartphones with 3D Touch-like functionality. However, since the OS lacks support for the feature, OEMs have only been able to take advantage of the feature in their own apps, which greatly limits its usability.
What do you think about Google adding 3D Touch support to Android N? For one, it will definitely be interesting to see if the company’s implementation will be similar to how 3D Touch works in iOS or it will be something different.