Quick Thoughts on Multitasking Gestures for iPad and the Home Button

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Multitasking Gestures on iPad

Image Source: Gizmodo

You may have seen Brandon’s post here earlier about the new multitasking gestures in iOS 4.3 (beta), where he mentioned that a lot of folks are even predicting that these could eventually replace the home button.

My very quick thoughts on this are:

— Please No! I’m with Brandon on this – no way do I want to see the home button go away.

— I’m not keen on the fact that these gestures require four or five fingers. I don’t think those are generally as easy to get right. Two finger gestures would be much better.

— The setting shown in the iOS 4.3 beta demos can be turned on and off. So at least for now, that does not look like a replacement for the home button – just another method.

— If Apple is looking at expanding the range of supported gestures, for pete’s sake can we finally get a gesture to popup a services toggle, a la the wonderful SBSettings jailbreak app?

What do you all think about these new multitasking gestures? And the possible replacement of the home button?


Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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5 thoughts on “Quick Thoughts on Multitasking Gestures for iPad and the Home Button”

  1. My Home Button had some issues lately. Luckly, I got a new iPad instead.

    Maybe that’s the reason why I love this new feature, It makes much more sense to me to swipe the hand to switch between apps. Double home + find the app I want + touching is just a hassle.

    Also, its more practical, as I rotate the iPad, sometimes the button is on my left or on my right, so not having to look for a button to switch apps, or going back to the home screen, seem a great idea.

    I just love the idea.

  2. “– If Apple is looking at expanding the range of supported gestures, for pete’s sake can we finally get a gesture to popup a services toggle, a la the wonderful SBSettings jailbreak app?”

    Thank you for mentioning this. I find it quite frustrating that that iOS does not support a services toggle, it’s such a simple feature I can’t figure why it hasn’t been added already. Drilling down for quick changes is quite annoying. I have SBSetting on my iPhone and it’s so easy and quick. Other than MyWi it’s the 2nd best reason to jailbreak your iPhone.

  3. @ Vicente – I can see your point, especially about rotating the iPad. I like the idea of more gestures, and definitely the ones for dropping back to the home screen and moving between apps – but I would rather see two finger gestures than four or five finger ones, just for ease of use.

    @ coregeek Yeah – this feature is so, so long overdue in iOS.

    1. @patrickj @coregeek I agree that would be great.

      @patrickj I think that 4 & 5 fingers are ok, because 2 fingers I use in most applications, 3 may work. 5 Fingers is just natural to switch apps, is just like, holding the window or something. 4 feels better to show the current open apps (I tend to have my thumb up when moving the rest of my fingers up).

      As said, I love this idea. Eliminating the Home Button? Not so sure, Maybe if they add double click on lock screen for accesibility. Not everyone is lucky to have all the fingers.

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