Android 14: New back gesture inspires users

Android 14: New back gesture inspires users


Developers and users seem to be excited about the forthcoming changes surrounding the Android operating system’s back gesture. Starting with Android 14, the new system with preview is enabled by default, but app developers need to adapt their apps accordingly. Google already wants to drum up advertising for it.

With the new gesture you can now see what will happen. For example, whether to jump to the home screen instead of going back one step in the app. In this way, the preview can prevent you from accidentally closing the app, even though you didn’t want to.

In terms of operation, the new gesture is exactly the same as before. Swipe from the edge of the screen to the center of the screen. What is new is the preview of what the action will trigger. In the inserted video, you can see that the new version shows the user actually jumping back within the calendar app.

I think you can make the preview a little more generous so that the user sees more. But there is still plenty of time left until the final Android 14.

Developers and users seem to agree that the new back gesture from Android 14 will make a positive difference

Google tells app developers that “the new Predictive Back feature has shown to outperform the current experience in terms of task completion, preference, satisfaction, trust and premium end-user quality.” That sounds good and should convince app developers.

For example, user comments include: “It’s very frustrating when you swipe back and think you’re going somewhere in the app, but instead go back to the home screen. I look forward to this role.”

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I can see that the more recent back gesture is generally met with rather positive feedback. Hopefully it will then be extensively usable in apps from Android 14 and not only in exceptional cases.

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