Windows 7 – Touch Gestures

Ever since the iPhone came out there seems to be a resurgence with touch technology and in particular multi-touch technology. From full all-in-one PC systems like the HP TouchSmart that I’ve seen in Netcom and the MSI WindTop to now the Acer T230H Touch Screen Panel monitor (seen at both Concepts and Netcom). Not knowing what Windows 7 with offered in terms of touch features I looked it up and came across “Using touch gestures” on Microsoft’s Windows 7 microsite (“My favorite ways to use Windows Touch” by John Swenson is also a good read for those considering using a touchscreen)

The main features are:

  • Flicks: basically navigating a page by flicking your finger upwards or downwards as normally seen on iPhones
  • Press and hold: press and holding down on the screen will act as a right click and it will pop-up the context menu
  • Windows Touch Gestures: Pan, Zoom, Rotate, Press and Tap. The first 3 are all similar to Apple’s trackpad multi-touch trackpads gestures but the “Press and Tap” gesture seems new and interesting. In order to activate “Press & Tap” you have to “Press the item with one finger, then quickly tap with another finger, while continuing to press the item with the first finger.”: if you just tap the shortcut menu will appear, if you tap and hold it will be treated as a right click. I’m not sure how well this works in usage and how helpful the shortcut menu is but it is something new and worth exploring
  • The last feature is related to the taskbar: tap the icon in the taskbar and flick upwards and it will show the window menu and jump list

Basically these features aren’t all that great to me, and I feel most of them work on devices with smaller screens and not so much with larger screens. But to all touch enthusiast this should be a good starting point for Windows. Most manufacturers will make their own touch software that runs on top of Windows and provides a more touch friendly experience but they will most likely stick to a multimedia focus or just for goofing around and nothing too productive


3 thoughts on “Windows 7 – Touch Gestures

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