Android 4.0 'Ice Cream Sandwich' sports native stylus support

Android ICS includes native stylus support.

Published Sat, Oct 22 2011 9:41 AM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:30 PM CST

Google's upcoming Android 4.0 'Ice Cream Sandwich' will include "full support for stylus input events" in the OS - including features such as pressure sensitivity and the ability to distinguish motion events from different sources; as in a pen or your finger. The support hangs on hardware-level support from tablet and smartphone makers, but hey, the native support in the OS is a big, big start.

Android 4.0 'Ice Cream Sandwich' sports native stylus support |

This is something Apple have yet to include, and could push ICS in a different direction for smartphones and tablets for people on-the-go. Windows 8 will most likely include the same kind of support, but ICS is here, now.

Google state in the exact words below:

Android 4.0 includes full support for stylus input events, including tilt and distance axes, pressure, and related motion event properties. To help applications distinguish motion events from different sources, the platform adds distinct tool types for stylus, finger, mouse, and eraser. For improved input from multi-button pointing devices, the platform now provides distinct primary, secondary, and tertiary buttons, as well as back and forward buttons. Hover-enter and hover-exit events are also added, for improved navigation and accessibility. Developers can build on these new input features to add powerful interactions to their apps, such as precise drawing and gesturing, handwriting and shape recognition, improved mouse input, and others.

Your move, Apple.

Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering.

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