Will L-Series Really Be One-Hand Useable?
I've seen BB10 info that say RIM understands the need to be able to use their devices with one hand, and I'm very glad for that. But when I watch various videos of BB10 in action on the touchscreen L-series preview devices, it seems to me that one-handed use actually might not be so easy after all. Specifically, how easy will it be to hold it in your right hand and reach your thumb to the top left corner of the device?
This first occurred to me when I saw the recent CB news post showing an L-series sitting beside an iPhone5, which made me realize how tall the new BB will be. It also looked to be wider than the iPhone5 which made me think of the size of the newly released Nokia Lumia 920s with WindowsPhone8. I've handled those devices, which are acknowledged as being quite large, and found them to be hard to use with one hand. I understand that the L-series phones we've seen in review videos and photos isn't necessarily an exact prototype of the phone that will hit the market in February, but I'm assuming it'll be rather similar.
Then in many of Kevin M.'s preview videos he seems to grab it with his left hand and poke it with his right hand (maybe he doesn't realize he's doing this because it's the natural tendency when dealing with something that size). In the review videos that show 4 active frames on the screen and holding it with one hand, he naturally swipes on the bottom two frames but rarely if ever on the top two. Some of the videos show a home screen with 16 icons (4 rows + 4 columns) and I've always thought that top left icon might be rather hard to reach.
Maybe this is paranoid nit-picking, and I hope it is, but watching the video reviews makes me a little nervous about the size of the new device. And with the recent trend of smartphones being for larger devices rather than smaller, I hope RIM doesn't release a new BB10 touchscreen device that's too hard to use one-handed and also possibly too large to comfortably fit into a pocket.
I would love it if the CrackBerry team would do a test video of their trying to use all of the features, apps, screens, peeking and flowing of the L-series with just one hand to see how easy (or hard) it will really be.
- CrackBerry Genius
11-15-12, 07:43 PM #2
- 4,279 Posts
I've seen videos where the user was able to quickly switch between two apps on the top of the active frames screen with one thumb. I wouldn't worry about it if I were you. RIM has built the UI around one-handed usability. Notice how the only things you really access from the top of the screen is the settings menu, which you wouldn't access often. All other options that are used more frequently are on a bar on the bottom of the screen. Also note the location of the URL box for the browser. It too is placed on the bottom of the screen.
- 11-18-12, 05:37 AM #3
I think that in general people will tend to hold it in one hand and poke at it with their other as you point out Kevin doing because it is generally quicker to use it that way since the finger using the device does not have its movement constrained at all, but most people will be just fine to use it one-handed and indeed you have changes like the browser address bar being at the bottom of the screen to make it easier.
The real question is how things will work out in future devices as those will inevitably get a larger display and less people will be able to still do everything one-handed, maybe they will step up to 4.5" where it is still possible alongside moving to 5" where nobody would expect to do so.
- 11-18-12, 06:57 PM #4
This is a great topic. With the Playbook at 7in, and quite honestly, with the ipad mini, and Nexus 7, -- do we really need to get much larger screens in our phones? I keep thinking that the largest size screen that I want to have is the 4in screen - because I can basically get to all of it depending upon how I am holding my phone. If I really wanted something larger - then i would pull out my 7in tablet.
The more I use the new phones, the more i appreciate the design of the 9810. Perfect 1 hand usability, can also jam out a long email if necessary, can close to use full screen in one hand, has the dedicated phone buttons - for those of us who make a lot of calls. I don;t care about the weight. I am surprised that having a light phone matters to anyone.
I also have a Droid Incredible 4g LTE - which is basically nearly an exact copy in size as the iphone 5 - and i can barely claim fast 1 handed use.
I am amazed at the new 5in screen phones, etc - and the tech. But, by the time you end up in that realm - you either use a pocketbook, or you got to be putting it in a jacket pocket, etc. I hope that someone other than Apple continues to make super phones with 4in or less screens. Not all of us care only about entertainment apps.
I have a bad feeling that I will be using 2 phones (9810 + something) for quite a long time.
- 11-19-12, 07:11 AM #10
- 11-19-12, 02:40 PM #11
Most importantly that I have noticed, the navigation buttons you would need to reach in the upper corners has mostly been brounght down (thinking of the browser, mostly). App developers will likely follow meaning you will likely have to reach to that corner a lot less. Very intelligent design, if you ask me.
- 11-22-12, 11:36 PM #13
Will L-Series Really Be One-Hand Useable?
Depends. For me. The problem with Android is not really the size of the phones as much as the button layout. The few emails clients I tried all rely heavily on the Android menu key for options such as "Compose", "Send" etc. Thereby creating the need to awkwardly (for me) stretch my thumb to the left.
So all RIM has to do to help is have everything on the screen as far as common commands. Gestures. Long press or whatever.
Sent from my BlackBerry 9930 using Tapatalk
- 11-23-12, 05:34 AM #14
In some cases the size of an android phone can become an issue, for example on larger models most people would tend to press the rightmost of the three default buttons when trying to press something in the top left-hand corner of the display on 4.7" and larger models.
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