Manufacturers are always moving around the lock/standby button on their phones in search of the perfect placement. We’ve seen everything from top-mounted power buttons, to side-switches, to even moving the entire control scheme to the back of the phone. But what happens when you buy your dream phone, only to find that the power button feels nearly impossible to reach?
It happens. Everybody has different tastes of course, and as a result the final solution that the engineers of a phone decide on may not match up with your ideal layout. This was the case for a lot of people last year (myself included) who were completely enamored by the HTC One M8, but couldn’t stand the power button sitting up top — which meant that you had to shimmy the phone far enough down your palm to reach the button with your index finger, at which point you have no grip and the already slippery One M8 falls out of your hand and collides with the pavement below you.
But placement is just one of our power button woes. Building on the same example, another problem with the M8’s arrangement is how shallow the travel on the button was. Even if you did manage to reach the button, it’s so flush with the rest of the phone’s chassis that it almost can’t be pressed, making your expensive new phone as good as a fancy paperweight … until in comes double-tap to wake.
Double-tap to wake, or Knock-On as LG calls it, is one of my favorite features on Android and Windows Phone handsets. If you can enable it in the settings, it doesn’t matter where your phone’s power button is; if you’re like me, you’ll never use it again anyway. The best part is that it’s found on a wide spread of devices from Microsoft, Oppo, Sony, and more — at this point it’s almost more rare for a phone not to have some double-tap solution. I constantly find myself poking at a blank phone screen and gaining quick access to my device, and it translates even better over to tablets like the Nexus 9. There are even great gestures to go with it all, like LG’s Knock Code security protocol, or HTC’s swipe up to bypass the lock screen on a non-secured phone. So my question to you is this: do you, like me, love and adore double-tap to wake and look to it as one of the more important factors in swaying your buying decision? Or do you have trouble with it always making your phone come on in your pocket and butt dialing your friends?