Whilst at CTIA 2011 we were given the opportunity to take a peek at the fabulous new Samsung Galaxy S2 running with the excellent new version of Samsung’s user interface overlay, TouchWiz 4.0. In the video you’re about to watch, you’ll see our good pal Philip Berne speaking about some of the new features coming in on the Samsung Galaxy S2 via the new version of TouchWiz featured on it. I’m sure you’re aware that we’re always a bit hesitant to work with manufacturer-added interfaces, instead relying on 3rd party people to give us what we want, but behold this: TouchWiz 4.0 seems like a really excellent addition to the history of Android and we can’t WAIT to use it – it and all of its everloving gesture movements for great justice in interaction.
What we get to see here first is a feature that works in-browser only. Once you’ve got a webpage loaded up (we’ve got AndroidCommunity.com loaded up here,) you can zoom in and out by holding down on the screen with two fingers and moving your phone back and forth. Amazing! It’d never occurred to us, or at least me, that the same gear inside a phone that allows me to maneuver a starship in a game would work its way into controlling a web browser as well. Well played!
Next we moved on to some widget talk, seeing that there’s some cool new “Live Tile” action going on, each of them movable with a long-press, each of them fitting together snug via a girding system that sets them up like a magazine. On top of that, the widgets drawer has been improved as well. You’re able to activate a set after set of widgets by hitting menu – add – widgets: this leading you to a set of four icons along the bottom of your screen where your drawer would normally be, each screen scrolling back and forth with a sort of slide-bump action. Very slick, very much want this functionality in my ADW drawer options.
Then there’s ANOTHER gesture-based control which you’re basically going to have a conniption fit over – when you grab a widget from your widgets drawer and you want to drop it to one of your home panels, all you’ve got to do is hold down on it and move your phone from side to side, again, physically through the air. As you do so, the screens will scroll back and forth, allowing you to choose the one you want without swiping in the least! And this is only Gingerbread – again, can’t wait until we get to see what they’ll do with what Honeycomb has to offer.
Neato, yes? Take a peek at our hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy S2 for a bit more general look at the phone and what you’re going to get out of it!