Mar 4th, 2010

gesture_search_transparentLast year at Google I/O, Romain Guy showed us a neat little Android Application called “Gesture Search” that allowed you to write shorthand of sorts to quickly jump to your intended destination. Think of your finger as a stylus and a single letter as a command. Or better yet, just check out these demonstration videos made by members of Android Forums:

gesture-search2Google does an even better job at explaining it:

Gesture Search lets you quickly find a contact, a bookmark, an application, or a music track from hundreds or thousands of items by drawing alphabet gestures on the touchscreen. Gesture Search continuously updates search results as you add each letter and improves search quality by learning from your search history.

When you load the application you get a plain black screen and as you “swipe” letters one-by-one it displays search results as if you’re typing out a word and it’s refining the list as you go. It seems to work great and the idea is fantastic, but I wholeheartedly agree with 1080p/AlbertOrange (maker of the 2nd vid):

“Right now it’s a novelty because it is a separate application that needs to be downloaded from the marketplace. Now if Google finds a way to integrate this into the core operating system… then we’ve really got something here.”

Google is innovating so much in so many places they often leave certain ideas in the dust if they don’t catch on – I hope Gesture Search isn’t one of them. Here is what Google has to say about Gesture Search on their download page:

Do you find it hard to find a contact or locate an application from a list of hundreds of items on an Android phone? Or do you find it stressful to search for an item by typing in its title while on the go?

Gesture Search from Google Labs lets you search your Android-powered device by drawing alphabet gestures on the touch screen. It allows you to quickly find a contact, a bookmark, an application, or a music track from hundreds or thousands of items, all in one place. It is fast and fun to use.

Gesture Search currently supports English and requires Android 2.0 or above.

I bet the 1.x users are a bit bummed… sorry!