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RedTheReader

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 18, 2019
506
1,238
Hi. I'm new to Android from iOS; I've only tried it a handful of times, all over the course of the last couple of months, and I recognize that I don't give it the chance it deserves and go to hard on it for being different in areas I'm used to iOS for. I understand that this comes across as a rant, but I feel there's enough legitimate criticism here to separate it from just being a new users inability to adapt to an unfamiliar system. I've got to emphasize that when I say "love" in the title, I really do mean it, because a universal back button's such a useful tool for an operation that takes multiple steps if you want to re-do it otherwise. I easily understand why Android users for years have complained about it's absence upon moving to (or having to use) iOS.

The problem is less about what the feature can do and more about what it prevents… the web browser's forward button. The one place where those back and forward buttons are not just a nice-to-have that departs from other operating systems, but are actually crucial parts of how I use the tool. See, if you pull up a Mac, Windows, iPad (yes I tried this just to emphasize my point), or Linux machine with a trackpad, you'll go back in a browser by swiping from the left to the right, and you'll go forward by swiping from the right to left. On touch devices, iOS, iPad, and Windows devices all let you go forward and back in a similar fashion. Note how literally every platform does this in a universal, standardized way.

Unfortunately, Android's dual-sided back gesture gets in the way of this, so browsers can not implement it. I've got to turn off gesture navigation and use 3 button navigation in order to make it work the way it does everywhere else, and I don't want to do that. With gesture navigation on, going forward's done by pressing the browser's built in forward button… which is at least one menu layer deep. If this seems like a non-issue to you, take a step back and compare it to how it's done on a desktop system: ideally, for the fastest way you'll have a mouse with buttons for navigation or a trackpad. That way, it's just a button press or a swipe. Easy. But if you don't, you'll take your cursor up to the top corner and click the button. That's already very slow for most people, which is why power users will have a good mouse or trackpad setup. But this… this is the equivalent of having to click a drop down menu before you can click the actual button for forward. No one would tolerate that many clicks to do something so common on a desktop, because it's stupid slow.

What's more is that the back/forward buttons on Android aren't always feature-par to the same button on the same browsers in other systems: they don't give you a drop down/up of the previous sites you've navigated to. If you want to go back say 4 times, you'll have to press the button that many times. This isn't always the case (like Firefox does give you the drop down) but it's missing even in the default Chrome.

So ultimately, despite loving so many other elements of the operating system, I find it hard to move to Android because of how the most powerful general purpose applications on any OS—web browsers—are crippled on it. I'm curious to see what others make of this and if they too find this paradigm a bit ridiculous, or if they don't/wouldn't mind that Android does things differently from everyone else or think they need to change at all.
 
Last edited:

Vegastouch

macrumors 603
Jul 12, 2008
6,148
953
Las Vegas, NV
Well as you said you havent given it enough time or a decent enough chance to get used to it or like it and if that is your only complaint.....then i think you are doing pretty good.

Firefox on certain websites or forums let you go forward by touching the three dots on the bottom right and brings up the option to refresh, go back or forward. It doesnt show on everything. Not sure why. Plus you can use a bunch of other web browsers and launchers.
Or maybe you can use desktop mode if available. This i why i still love to use PCs.....just easier to do many other things.

You sure typed a lot to say im not used to this yet but i want to vent lol.

Me, Android just does so many other things that iOS dont do and they do others better like Google search. Siri is awful.....still! Maps is better. I can go on but whats the point. Use what you like.
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2015
4,470
4,711
Land of Smiles
Am I missing something coz I am not re reading the OP post again LOL

Samsung stock browser has almost the same fwd/back navigation buttons as my IP14P

Screenshot_20230706_041230_Samsung Internet.jpg
 

Technerd108

macrumors 68030
Oct 24, 2021
2,970
4,197
If anything I hate trying to find the back arrow on iOS and if I have scrolled down a page I have to scroll all the way back up. It is like finding a needle in a haystack vs just swiping left or right to go back.

In most browsers on Android, specially Chrome which is sort of the most popular you can go forward by pressing the 3 button icon on the top right of the screen.

I am assuming that you have enabled gesture support on Android. If you are still using the 3 button menu on the bottom of the screen that is pretty much really old. I have not used that in many years. Pretty much the same time Apple implemented gesture support.

Your extremely long post is not bad because it is long it is a bit all over the place and confusing because I am still not even sure what you are complaining about since nothing you complained about is really a problem. It may be due to lack of experience with Android in general. In that case I would ask what you want done and can anyone help rather than write a long statement about a feature that maybe you don't fully understand how it works?
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2015
4,470
4,711
Land of Smiles
Two things: I'm not on a Samsung phone so I didn't use their browser, and that's the tablet view. Most browsers I've seen have them there. I'm talking about regular 99% Android phones.
Two things

Samsung phones are the most populous world wide and the the apk should be usable on most good phones

The nav buttons are not restricted and work equally well on standard slab phones as foldables

Screenshot_20230707_130233_Samsung Internet.jpg
 

RedTheReader

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 18, 2019
506
1,238
You don't need a Samsung phone to use their browser, it's in the playstore and is one of the best browsers going.
I didn't know that! I suppose I just assumed that those apps would have been exclusive to OneUI. I'm kind of mind-blown though… I tried the Pixel's default Chrome, Firefox, Brave, Vivaldi, and even some smaller names like Firefox focus, Kiwi browser, and Duckduckgo browser. Who would've guessed that Samsung's would be the one that actually had the feature?

I'm not sure I could actually get away with using it though because there's no desktop equivalent, which means that there's not going to be any sync. Still, thanks so much for letting me know because now Android's become actually viable for me.
 

MarkX

macrumors 65816
Sep 10, 2015
1,149
1,387
Fochabers, Scotland
I didn't know that! I suppose I just assumed that those apps would have been exclusive to OneUI. I'm kind of mind-blown though… I tried the Pixel's default Chrome, Firefox, Brave, Vivaldi, and even some smaller names like Firefox focus, Kiwi browser, and Duckduckgo browser. Who would've guessed that Samsung's would be the one that actually had the feature?

I'm not sure I could actually get away with using it though because there's no desktop equivalent, which means that there's not going to be any sync. Still, thanks so much for letting me know because now Android's become actually viable for me.
The Samsung browser can sync with chrome so if you use chrome on your desktop you're all
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2015
4,470
4,711
Land of Smiles
I didn't know that! I suppose I just assumed that those apps would have been exclusive to OneUI. I'm kind of mind-blown though… I tried the Pixel's default Chrome, Firefox, Brave, Vivaldi, and even some smaller names like Firefox focus, Kiwi browser, and Duckduckgo browser. Who would've guessed that Samsung's would be the one that actually had the feature?

I'm not sure I could actually get away with using it though because there's no desktop equivalent, which means that there's not going to be any sync. Still, thanks so much for letting me know because now Android's become actually viable for me.
You should not be surprised by Samsung they are world leaders in many areas and Iphones would be pants without them :)

A noted above you can run Android apps as native files on Win11 and of course with Samsung phones you have more options with Link to windows app and Samsung Dex

This is the power of Android and collaboration with MS there are many options and solutions to suit all tastes
 
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RedTheReader

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 18, 2019
506
1,238
You sure typed a lot to say im not used to this yet but i want to vent lol.
Your extremely long post is not bad because it is long it is a bit all over the place and confusing because I am still not even sure what you are complaining about since nothing you complained about is really a problem. It may be due to lack of experience with Android in general. In that case I would ask what you want done and can anyone help rather than write a long statement about a feature that maybe you don't fully understand how it works?
I think this is some really constructive criticism and I thank you guys for writing it out. Really, what's the point if people can't even follow my argument? I was adding a lot of superfluous stuff that didn't really pertain to the core topic. So, I've taken it to heart and edited the OP and changed the title to better reflect the content. I think it's a lot more clear cut now.

But to put it briefly, I'm saying that by not having alway-present back/forward arrows (in browsers) and the OS not letting forward gestures work (in browsers), Android devs are making their browsers worse than every other operating system out there. That's Apple's job; they're the ones who do things differently and often worse just… because. I never expected to see Android doing the same.
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2015
4,470
4,711
Land of Smiles
I think this is some really constructive criticism and I thank you guys for writing it out. Really, what's the point if people can't even follow my argument? I was adding a lot of superfluous stuff that didn't really pertain to the core topic. So, I've taken it to heart and edited the OP and changed the title to better reflect the content. I think it's a lot more clear cut now.

But to put it briefly, I'm saying that by not having alway-present back/forward arrows (in browsers) and the OS not letting forward gestures work (in browsers), Android devs are making their browsers worse than every other operating system out there. That's Apple's job; they're the ones who do things differently and often worse just… because. I never expected to see Android doing the same.
Your still getting it wrong and its not Android OS it's 3rd parties apps choices

As we have shown Samsung stock app works very similar to IOS with fwd and back buttons and in addition allows add blockers

To me your OP could just been simple and requested which Android browser has the buttons you like :rolleyes:
 

Technerd108

macrumors 68030
Oct 24, 2021
2,970
4,197
I think this is some really constructive criticism and I thank you guys for writing it out. Really, what's the point if people can't even follow my argument? I was adding a lot of superfluous stuff that didn't really pertain to the core topic. So, I've taken it to heart and edited the OP and changed the title to better reflect the content. I think it's a lot more clear cut now.

But to put it briefly, I'm saying that by not having alway-present back/forward arrows (in browsers) and the OS not letting forward gestures work (in browsers), Android devs are making their browsers worse than every other operating system out there. That's Apple's job; they're the ones who do things differently and often worse just… because. I never expected to see Android doing the same.

You can have the options you say aren't there. You just have to install a different browser like Samsung browser and set it as default. You are done.

Android is different than iOS in that you have many options in the settings of the phone, the home app, the browsers and browser choice.

Also you can use iOS gestures and scroll all the way up a page you scrolled down just to find the back arrow or you can just swipe left or right on Android? Which is easier?

There are going to be advantages and disadvantages to the way both iOS and Android work. You just have to get used to the differences and learn how best to use each system.
 
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