It’s been a while since we’ve talked about Force Touch, right? We’ve gone and genericized Apple’s “3D Touch” to the point where we’ve forgotten it’s been around for a while. But let’s not lose sight of the features package 3D Touch brings us — added functionality. The second iteration of the Developer Preview has code to support something called “Launcher Shortcuts” and the folks at Phandroid, in association with Nova Launcher’s developer, have gotten together a working demo of how an app might take advantage of it.
Since the Android ecosystem has yet to develop an app with the new Launcher Shortcut feature, a staffer at the outlet coded up a quick and dirty weather app to show off the possibility. There are a few ways to peek into a Launcher Shortcut — mostly swiping — but it’s likely that we’ll see Force Touch (pressure sensitivity) support become standard with an announcement at Google I/O.
Google has thrown out some suggested use cases for Launcher Shortcuts including pointing users to specific map locations, sending messages, controlling media or loading a savefile in a game.
If you have Chris Lacy’s Action Launcher and are wondering what all the fuss is about, well, the rest of Android may be about to find out.