September 2015 could go down in history as the month that changed technology forever. That’s because in the last couple of weeks we’ve seen Huawei launch a phone with Force Touch, and then Apple launch iPhone 6s with 3D Touch.
These pressure sensitive screen technologies have been around for years, but with two of the three biggest phone makers in the world perfecting it, the way we interact with our gadgets could be about to change.
In the iPhone 6s, for example, 3D Touch can be used for quick shortcuts, like pressing more firmly on the camera app to launch the selfie camera instead of the rear one. Pressing harder also gives thicker lines when doodling in Notes, making it easier to draw.
Huawei has found other uses for Force Touch on the Mate S Luxury Edition. You can remove Android’s navigation buttons because you can go back, home or open multitasking by pressing harder at the bottom of the screen. You can also pin invisible app shortcuts to the corners of the screen so you can get to them with a firm press.
But the possibilities for pressure sensitive screens go beyond navigation and drawing. Imagine playing a racing game on your phone and having fine control of the throttle and brake – you really would be able to take to the streets of Monaco like Lewis Hamilton.
Games as simple as pinball could be so much better too. You could actually have control of how hard you hit the ball.
It’s not just games that will benefit. Huawei has already developed a kitchen scales app for the Mate S Luxury Edition – it’s not particularly accurate by all accounts, but it’s only a first try. If a waterproof Sony tablet was given Force Touch in the future, it would have the potential to be an awesome kitchen gadget.
Now that Force Touch and 3D Touch have made it to the mainstream, we can’t wait to see what uses people come up with for it.
If you’ve got ideas for what you want 3D Touch and Force Touch to do, join the conversation below.