For the last few years, the Android team has been working on ways to improve the back gesture, making it more clear what going back will actually do. With the latest Android 14 preview, the Settings app has a predictive back gesture that can show which page you’ll be going back to.
The “predictive back gesture” was added with Android 13, and at first, it was solely designed to let you know that swiping back would exit an app and return to the home screen. This feature is available on Pixel phones today, but it requires you to enable a special toggle within Developer Options.
Assuming you already have Developer Options enabled, to enable the updated back gesture, simply toggle on the “Predictive back animations” switch. Upon doing so, supported apps like Google Phone will show a bit of your home screen when you begin swiping for the back gesture. In case you didn’t intend on closing the app, you can instead slowly reverse the swipe motion and return to the app.
As announced last year, this feature is expanding with Android 14 to let apps show previews of what will happen when you go back from any screen. Our first major showcase of this comes from the Settings app, where you can pop into one of the sub menus and swipe back to see that you’ll return to the main page.
This is a feature that is easier to show than tell, though, so here’s a quick preview:
As you can see, when I swipe back from the “Data saver” page, a slightly transparent version of the “Network & internet” page slides into view. By swiping back and releasing, I can cancel the gesture altogether.
What do you think of the new in-app predictive back animations added with Android 14? Let us know in the comments.
More on Android 14:
- Here’s everything new in Android 14 Developer Preview 2 [Gallery]
- Android 14 DP2: Flash notifications on Pixel will let you emulate a notification LED
- Android 14 will bring passkey support for Dashlane and other apps
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