Swiping just doesn’t pay off!


Swiping User Interface (UI) gestures just doesn’t pay off – unless you’re BlackBerry, of course!!

For those of you with a short memory, BlackBerry introduced the ‘swipe’ feature to modern smartphones way back on 31 Jan 2013 (UK launch). At the time this feature was released on the Z10 it was panned by most critics as too difficult to use and too cumbersome. The critics felt that repeatedly stabbing at a ‘Home’ button was considered de rigueur.

Fast forward less than 5-years and guess what? Android, the largest platform (~85% of global sales) and iOS (~14% of global sales) have both embraced the Swipe! (Are they Swiping the Swipe or merely improving it???)

For those of you who had the pleasure of using BB10 it was and still is the most intuitive, elegant OS platform ever released for smartphones. Period. Unfortunately it was never widely embraced by the masses (the reasons are too numerous to mention in this blog).

But guess what?? The re-launch of the Swipe has not gone as planned. Evidently Google’s Nexus and Pixel branded devices are having issues after the update to android 8.1 (Oreo) was rolled out. There are reports of various swiping problems – hopefully they will be addressed soon.

Apple has also jumped on-board the Swiping bandwagon with the iPhone X. Some of the iPhone Old-Guard may claim they had it way back in 2015, but I personally don’t consider swiping left or right to scroll through selfies as true swiping.

So have a gander at the latest promo for iPhone swiping and tell me they didn’t ‘borrow’ this idea from some Canadian based smartphone/software manufacturer?


Lo and behold the ‘Genius’ programmers at Apple have had some issues with swiping too. It seems there are a few issues that needs to be worked out – but worry not, you can rest assured that Apple will never roll out an update before thoroughly testing it!



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  • Observation Junkie

    I wouldn’t worry too much about Apple or Google ‘s issues with their swipe feature. I’m sure they’ll improve with their software updates.

    BlackBerry OS10, along with its swipe features is slowly being buried, one by one the nail in the coffin is being hammered in.

    Yet, the competition continues to adopt many of its features while BlackBerry quickly turns it’s head the other way and is now a slave to another software.

    BlackBerry Android, with no control over the software build, which also needs monthly security updates, shocking, and would never have been accepted on BlackBerry 10.

    BlackBerry Android doesn’t even have swipe features, but their competitors are adopting it, no matter how late they are, they are still alive unlike BlackBerry 10.

    Yes, I type this from my BlackBerry Passport, with its swipe features while my Priv remains in the cupboard, the bastard child that it is.

    • Calling monthly security updates a weakness is shocking.

      Google promised monthly security updates after Stagefright, and has kept to this promise. As the number one mobile OS in the world, in terms of marketshare, Android is constantly under attack by both white hat and black hat hackers. This is a good thing as these vulnerabilities are exposed, Google is ensuring to patch them up every month. It’s the reason why companies offer bug bounties, to get other eyes looking at their products so that they can secure them from unrealized vulnerabilities.

      As per BlackBerry’s control over software build, I’ll refer back to an Inside BlackBerry post by Alex Thurber,

      “As I recently wrote, BlackBerry phones are the world’s most secure Android smartphones because we’ve designed security into every possible piece of the software that runs them.

      We inject security keys during manufacturing to make sure that you have genuine hardware. We utilize “secure boot” technology to make sure that no malware loads before the operating system and to prevent the operating system from being “downgraded” to a less secure version. We make modifications throughout the Android operating system “stack” to not only harden it, but also to have “triggers” that help identify if there is an attempt to hack the software, you are alerted.

      BlackBerry locks down capabilities in the Android OS that could give attackers the opportunity to compromise your device, and our software provides a secure environment that makes it difficult for attackers to find vulnerabilities or perform attacks.

      The modifications we make to Android, long before the device is ever used, provide more durable security and require far fewer patches than non-BlackBerry smartphones.”


      • Observation Junkie

        You can keep going on about BlackBerry squirting, injecting security keys during manufacturing all you want. It didn’t save BlackBerry 10 and it’s going to make negligible difference to BlackBerry Android. It’s not what drives spending habits by the majority. This can be seen by going into any phone shop. I still hardly see ANY BlackBerry Android devices.

        Yes monthly security updates is shocking, which even BlackBerry 10 doesn’t do, yet it’s still far more secure than Android. There’s your answer.

        Black Hat, Green Hat, Yellow Hat. Hats with little pink flowers, it’s still mainly user experience/ price which determine people purchase of a phone. NOT security. We’ve beaten the old BlackBerry is secure story to death for years. It’s made negligible difference.

        You have so conveniently decided to ignore the main points In my comment, about swipe features. Instead you decide to hark on about security, yada yada yada, the same story which the majority do not care about. But if you feel happy quoting security all day long, sure, It’s your right.

        So back to swipe, yes, which BlackBerry 10 is excellent, and being copied by its competitors while in the background we sit back and listen to OS10 chocking a slow death.

        Swipe features will be updated by Apple, Google and Samsung. Apple is also in development with Channels equivalent. These user experiences will be enhanced by these companies.

        Any more quotes from Inside BlackBerry you feel like mentioning?

        • Because I agree gesture based navigation is better than a home button. And I think BlackBerry got it right on BB10.

          I’m simply correcting wrong statements. If wrong information is given, we will correct it. As we always have.

          BTW, you speak of security as a negligible difference. As much as I love BB10’s swipe gestures, it also made a negligible difference. I’d go so far as to say it hurt the chances of BB10 in a market that wasn’t ready to give up a home button. I’m excited to see attitudes changing, even though it seems with many reports of users returning the iPhone X for the 8 based on the gestures, we still may not be there yet.

  • Bwahahahahaha! I didn’t know UTB was a comedy sight too! Love the last line of this blog; “Apple will never roll out an update without thoroughly testing it.”

    So once again, Apple “invented” something other platforms have had for years (although they may not claim as much, they’re users probably will). I suppose if I encounter an iOS or Android user talking about gestures, I’ll probably politely tell them that is great and that was available with my PlayBook and my Z10 several years ago.

  • MePiikan LzBolaz

    BB10 gestures are the best all around.