TouchWiz

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TouchWiz
Available in 50+ languages
Type Graphical user interface
License proprietary
Website www.samsung.com/uk/mobileappsandservices/touchwiz.html

TouchWiz is touch interface developed by Samsung Electronics with partners, featuring a full touch user interface. TouchWiz is only available on Samsung phones. It is sometimes incorrectly identified as an operating system. TouchWiz is used internally by Samsung for smartphones, feature phones and tablet computers, and is not available for licensing by external parties. The Android version of TouchWiz also comes with Samsung-made apps preloaded (except Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, which have removed all Samsung pre-loaded apps installed, leaving one with Galaxy Apps, to save storage space, due to the removal of MicroSD).

The latest version of TouchWiz is: TouchWiz Nature UX 5.0,[1] which is on the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy Note 5, and TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0/3.5 on the Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 4.[2] They feature a more refined user interface as compared to the previous versions, on Samsung's older flagships released prior to Galaxy S5's release. The status bar is now transparent during home screen mode in TouchWiz Nature UX 2.0 and TouchWiz Nature UX 2.5. In TouchWiz 4.0 on Galaxy S II and the Galaxy Note (both later updated to Nature UX), some of the features added include panning and tilt,[3] which makes use of the accelerometer and gyroscope in the phone to detect motion.

TouchWiz is used by Samsung's own proprietary operating systems, Bada and REX, as well as phones based on the Android operating system. It is also present in phones running the Tizen operating system.

TouchWiz was a central issue in Apple v. Samsung.

Versions[edit]

TouchWiz 3.0 Lite (Supports Android 2.1 - Android 2.2) (2010)[edit]

The Lite version of 3.0 was the "plain" edition of the original 3.0. The first device with TouchWiz 3.0 Lite was Samsung Galaxy Proclaim.

TouchWiz 3.0 (Supports Android 2.1 - Android 2.2) (2010)[edit]

The original version of TouchWiz was first introduced by the Samsung Galaxy S.

TouchWiz 4.0 (Supports Android 2.3 - Android 4.0) (2011)[edit]

The Second Version of TouchWiz was improved with hardware acceleration. Samsung Galaxy S II was the first device preloaded with TouchWiz 4.0. It also has an optional gesture-based interaction called 'motion' which (among other things) allows users to zoom in and out by placing two fingers on the screen and tilting the device towards and away from themselves to zoom in and out respectively. This gesture function works on both the web browser and the images in gallery used within this device. "Panning" on TouchWiz 4.0 allows the movement of widgets and icons shortcuts between screens, by allowing the device to be held and moved from side to side to scroll through home screens. This gesture-based management of widgets is a new optional method next to the existing method of holding and swiping between home screens.

Preloaded Apps (Selected Devices only)[edit]

  • Diary
  • Samsung Apps
  • Voice Command
  • AllShare Play
  • Samsung Kies Air
  • Samsung Social Hub
  • Samsung Music Hub
  • Samsung Readers Hub
  • Samsung Game Hub

Preloaded Apps (Samsung Galaxy Note Devices only)[edit]

  • S Note
  • Diary
  • Samsung Apps
  • Voice Command
  • AllShare Play
  • Samsung Kies Air
  • Samsung Social Hub
  • Samsung Music Hub
  • Samsung Readers Hub
  • Samsung Game Hub

TouchWiz Nature UX Lite (Supports Android 4.0) (2012)[edit]

The Lite version of the Nature UX of TouchWiz was the "plain" edition of the original TouchWiz Nature UX. The first device with TouchWiz Nature UX Lite was the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0.

TouchWiz Nature UX (Supports Android 4.0.4 - Android 4.1.2) (2012)[edit]

The third version of TouchWiz was renamed to TouchWiz Nature UX along with the complete redesigned look and feel. Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy Star and the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 are the first devices preloaded with TouchWiz Nature UX. The "Nature" version used by the S III and Note 10.1 has a more "organic" feel than previous versions, and contains more interactive elements such as a water ripple effect on the lock screen and brand new system sounds. To complement the TouchWiz interface, and as a response to Apple's Siri, the phone introduces S Voice, Samsung's intelligent personal assistant. S Voice can recognize eight languages including English, Korean and French. Based on Vlingo, S Voice enables the user to verbally control 20 functions such as playing a song, setting the alarm, or activating driving mode; it relies on Wolfram Alpha for online searches. New eye tracking functions such as Smart Stay can be found on selected TouchWiz Nature UX devices. The icon and the user-interface of the camera application is still the same as in TouchWiz 4.0 as known from the Galaxy S2.
To take screenshots, you have to hold down the home button and the power button at the same time (on devices with on-screen buttons (i.e. Galaxy Note 10.1, Galaxy Camera), the volume down and power buttons). In earlier TouchWiz versions, a small press was enough to take a screenshot.

Preloaded Apps (Selected Devices only)[edit]

  • ChatON
  • Samsung Apps
  • S Voice
  • Samsung Game Hub
  • Samsung Video Hub
  • Samsung Social Hub
  • AllShare Play
  • Samsung Music Hub
  • S Suggest
  • S Memo

Preloaded Apps (Samsung Galaxy Note Devices only)[edit]

  • ChatON
  • Samsung Apps
  • S Voice
  • S Note
  • Samsung Game Hub
  • Samsung Video Hub
  • Samsung Social Hub
  • AllShare Play
  • Samsung Music Hub
  • S Suggest
  • S Memo

TouchWiz Nature UX 2.0 (Supports Android 4.2) (2013)[edit]

The fourth version of TouchWiz is still based on the "Nature" version used by the S III with some slight design changes. Samsung Galaxy S4 is the first device preloaded with TouchWiz Nature UX 2.0. Even more eye tracking abilities were introduced with the S4 such as Smart Scroll. The settings menu is now split into four sections: Connections, My Device, Accounts, and More (phones only).

Samsung Galaxy S4 using TouchWiz on Android Jelly Bean[4]

The Camera app User Interface now allows the user to capture photos and videos, without switching between photo and video modes. It has also been improved in TouchWiz Nature UX 2.5.

Preloaded Apps (Selected Devices only)[edit]

Preloaded Apps (Samsung Galaxy Note Devices only)[edit]

TouchWiz Nature UX 2.5 (Supports Android 4.3 - Android 4.4) (2013)[edit]

TouchWiz Nature UX 2.5 is also slightly changed in design. Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition are the first devices to be preloaded with the new TouchWiz. The brand new version of TouchWiz now completely supports Samsung Knox security function. The new settings menu (Connections, Device, Controls, General) from the Note 3 (with the four categories at the top of the screen) now supports tablets, such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition, while preserving the traditional two panel layout since the original Galaxy Tab 10.1. This reduces the amount of scrolling needed for a user to go to a specific item on the left panel. The Camera-Application User Interface from TouchWiz Nature UX 2.0 stays, but is improved. Also noteworthy to remember is the new search box, located just above the first item and below the category. It was moved to the top right in Android 4.4.

Multi user support was added in Android 4.3. Up to eight users can be added.

The camera UI has a few improvements and features added:

  • Access settings directly
  • Virtual Tour
  • Golf Mode
  • Lower Shutter Lag
  • PhotoSphere360
  • Smart Stabilization replaces night mode

The Galaxy S4, Note 3 , Note 2 and other 2013 smartphones still remain in this version of TouchWiz after its update to Android 4.4, while the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition, Galaxy Note 8.0, and other 2013 tablets are updated to TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0 after the update. The search box has moved to the top right corner of the settings screen as a search button on devices with the multi-tab Settings application (Connections, Device, Controls, General).

Preloaded Apps (Selected Devices only)[edit]

Preloaded Apps (Samsung Galaxy Note Devices only)[edit]

TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0 (Supports Android 4.4 - Android 5.0) (2014)[edit]

TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0 is also slightly changed in design. Samsung Galaxy S5 and the Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 are the first devices to be preloaded with the new TouchWiz. The skin has undergone evolution towards improved user friendliness with larger icons, less clutter, and visual cues. Samsung has recreated all the icons making them look flatter. Settings is no longer a long text list and is replaced with quick settings icons that give very clear visual cues. Settings is still a multi-panel app in TouchWiz, compared to the one panel layout in stock Android 4.4 KitKat.

In Android 4.4, the menu system is redesigned once again. One can now tap on the divider to adjust the width of the two panels in a multi-pane app (for example, Settings). Also, the search box in the settings menu has moved to the top right corner of the screen.

The animation of the green battery icon, which is displayed if the Home or Power key is pressed during offline charging, has changed. Now, the battery percentage is displayed inside of the green battery icon in the center of the screen. On TouchWiz versions prior to Nature UX 3.0, the battery percentage was not displayed during offline charging.

Another major change is, that the icons in the context menus are removed.[citation needed] Additionally, entries in context menus do not show up at all, if they are not usable at the moment.[citation needed] On TouchWiz Nature UX 2.5 and lower, those options were still displayed, but disabled.[citation needed]

Some budget Samsung devices, such as the Samsung Galaxy V Plus, Samsung Galaxy Trend 2 Lite and Samsung Galaxy J1 Ace, feature a reduced version of TouchWiz named "TouchWiz Essence UX", which is based on TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0 but adapted for devices with less than 1GB of RAM. Since this version, there is also an Ultra Power Saving mode, which makes the phone to limit the usage of battery, extending its duration (on the Galaxy S4, for example, activating this mode with 48% charge extends the duration up to 96 hours).

  • The screen will turn in grayscale tones.
  • Only a few apps such as the Browser, Messages and Dialer are accessible.
  • The processing power/performance is limited.
    • The cores will be clocked down to 1,2 GHz.
  • The screen's brightness will be set as low as possible.
  • Some features such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth will switch off.

TouchWiz Nature UX 3.5 (Supports Android 4.4.4 - Android 5.0.1) (2014)[edit]

For the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, a slightly modified version of TouchWiz Nature UX 3.0 was released with it, also known as Nature UX 3.5. The Note 4, Note Edge and the Galaxy A-series were the only devices to ship with this version on Android 4.4.4; older high-end devices from 2013 (Galaxy S4 and Note 3) received this modified TouchWiz skin with its Android 5.0.1 update. Notable changes are:

  • Settings menu has a white background compared to the original version on Galaxy S4. The white background has been in use on nearly every Samsung Galaxy tablet. On the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition, a more material design-like theme is used for the Settings menu, while keeping the flat icons.
  • The lock screen's digital clock is now centered.
  • The font for the digital clock was also changed.
  • Some elements have been removed from the 'drop down' menu, even if they still do exist.
  • Camera application has lost more features but now adds AF/AE Lock.
  • The name "self-portrait"-mode has changed into "selfie"
  • Removed Feature: Ability to display EXIF information - also removed in the newer UX versions.

TouchWiz Nature UX 5.0 (Supports Android 5.0 - Android 5.1) (2015)[edit]

This version of TouchWiz was included with the release of the Samsung Galaxy A3 (2016), Samsung Galaxy J1 (2016), Galaxy A5, Galaxy On5, Galaxy A9 (2016) and Galaxy S6 Active. It is the first TouchWiz to support themes which includes an Icon Changer, Wallpaper and UI elements which is similar to Huawei's Emotion UI. Also, a new quick toggle has been added to the notifications panel, which allows the user to use the Camera flash as a flashlight.[5] Some flagships like (Galaxy S5 and Note 3) will receive this new version of the interface with the Android 5.1.1 update.

This version of TouchWiz is severely reduced in features and entries in context menus and settings. The features and settings were removed to make the user interface cleaner, so that minimalists get satisfied by having a better oversight.[6]
Many Icons in icon bars were also replaced with text written in capital letters.[6] Additionally, some features or settings have not been completely removed, but moved (not copied) to a different place, where it's sometimes harder to find them. [7]

A major change is the downgraded quick toggle panel, which has now got the design of Android Lollipop, and a steeply reduced number of toggles. It is no longer possible to drag it down with two fingers to view all toggles. Additionally, there „view all toggles“ mode is now the „EDIT“-Mode, where it's only possible to move the toggles to a preferred place by holding it. On the older TouchWiz-Versions, it was possible to access the advanced settings of the toggle by holding it down. The edit mode was additional and not integrated into the view-all-toggles-option of the notification panel. On the new TouchWiz UX 5.0, calling the advanced settings by holding a toggle for a second is just possible, when you're not in EDIT mode (normal notification panel), which only allows accessing the first ten quick toggles. [8] [9]

Phones running Samsung TouchWiz[edit]

Proprietary[edit]

Bada[edit]

Windows Mobile[edit]

Symbian[edit]

Tizen[edit]

Android[edit]

Cameras[edit]

Smartphones[edit]

Phablets[edit]

Tablets[edit]

References[edit]