Who Wants Multitouch Support in 10.6?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by G4R2, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. G4R2 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 29, 2006
    My vote is no.

    Multitouch is cool on the iPhone, but it suffers from a few major drawbacks for both desktop and laptop form factors.

    First and foremost is that it would force upon most users a costly hardware upgrade. Mac Pro users are the least likely to be disenchanted by this as they can most easily, if not inexpensively, replace their current monitors should they really need a multitouch display. Current iMac users are less likely to buy an additional monitor because it diminishes the appeal of the form factor. The same is true of laptop users.

    And second, the current form factors for computers just doesn't complement a multitouch UI very well. Would computer users really skip over their mouses in order to touch the screen in order to perform the same function that the mouse is capable of doing? It's just not practical and would lead to a lot of very expensive computer screens being covered in fingerprints, something that may be acceptable for an iPhone and perhaps for a laptop, but probably not for desktops.

    A more practical and appealing alternative to multitouch is motion tracking. The advantages of this are that all Mac's either have built in iSights or can have one added on at a fraction of the cost of what a multitouch display might go for. This makes such a feature accessible to virtually all Mac users today, not something that only the few who choose to upgrade will benefit from.

    It's also more practical. Users don't have to reach across the desk over their mouses to use it. It would complement the mouse in a functional way. And it wouldn't lead to screens being covered with smudges, which will surely generate complaints and demands for new form factors.

    This technology is becoming fairly mature and will be available to users shortly even if Apple chooses not to include it in their next OS. For instance, take CamSpace, which is currently in beta and will be available for free to Windows, OS X, and Linux users.


    This type of feature would leapfrog Windows again and bring a popular and compelling feature from the Wii to computer desktops.
  2. philgilder macrumors 68000

    Sep 30, 2007
    multitouch on desktops and laptops (actual laptops, not tablets) would be horrible for a reason you have pointed out:
    you have to reach over the desk to do it
    this means having one/two arms fully outstretched and leaning forwards just to touch it
    and they need new screens

    multitouck works fine on iphone, but even on a laptop (mbp/air) i could see it being uncomfortable to use for a long time

    also, look at what microsoft demoed with it: pointless 'fun' apps that will get boring very quickly. no real world use in its current form
  3. Watabou macrumors 68040


    Feb 10, 2008
    United States
    I'm not really pumped out about the whole multitouch thing. I personally think that Microsoft is going to end up making another big mistake. But we'll see how that goes in 2010 when they come out with Windows 7. The problem with multi touch as philglider stated is that you have to get new screens and it gets very uncomfortable. I can't imagine using multitouch a lot and for what? Moving around photos? Pinch in and out? No, thanks.
  4. sil3nc3 macrumors regular

    Oct 14, 2007
    don't the current MBPs support multitouch, albeit very basic? I wouldn't mind a mini-trackpad USB plug-in for it. It doesn't have to be on the screen.
  5. Beau10 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 6, 2008
    Downtown San Diego
    Multitouch is a staple of the future, so yes, absolutely. It already exists in a very primitive form in Leopard so the argument it moot anyway.

    Don't box in your thinking. Just like you can get by without a mouse (hello Spotlight/Quicksilver) you should be able to get by without multitouch. The difference in having it is potentially shortening workflows. It's complementary. Also, it is not input device specific. You may use a specially designed screen, true. But you can also use a trackpad, as evidenced in Leopard. Or perhaps a device a recognizes in the air gestures, maybe an iSight camera. Or maybe mice that are modified to use a subset.
  6. BlakTornado Guest


    Apr 24, 2007
    Washington, OH
    Cripes! How far away do you have your screen!?!?!?

    I'm sure that can't be good for your eyes...

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