Descendant GSI adds a “ThumbUI” feature to make it easier to navigate one-handed

Descendant GSI adds a “ThumbUI” feature to make it easier to navigate one-handed

Smartphones and their displays have been continuously getting bigger and taller, and there’s no reason to believe that we are going to stop anytime soon. Phones have long since evolved from being purely one-handed use electronics, and most of us now find it very difficult to use them entirely with one hand. Also complicating the situation is the fact that UIs have not particularly adapted to bring down interactable elements within the reach of the thumb. Several OEMs have tried their hand (heh) at fixing this situation with different implementations of a “one-handed mode,” and even we at XDA gave it a shot.


Descendent GSI is now taking a shot at fixing this problem with a new ThumbUI. Descendent is a GSI made by XDA Senior Member Dil3mm4 based off of the AOSP GSI by XDA Recognized Developer phhusson, adding in several features that make using the GSI a more pleasant experience than plain AOSP. ThumbUI is but one of these features.

ThumbUI overlays action_bar, switch_bar, and pinned_header (for listviews) height, which makes the edits be reflected system-wide and app-wide on all apps that make correct use of Material Design guidelines. Here are two videos showcasing the ThumbUI feature in action:

Click to expand the changelog for the latest release of Descendent v2.1 below.

Descendent v2.1 Changelog

UI changes

  • Clear all button in notification drawer has been centered
  • Minor tweak on battery animation gauge speed in Settings
  • Black theme has been inherited
  • Increased touch area for volume bars
  • Added charge animation on lockscreen
  • Brightness bar is 5dp thinner and now has two small icons inside
  • Chevron icon replaces the small rectangle as QS drag icon
  • Home button now has an animation based on color accent
  • Power menu button spawning will blur out the background

New Features

  • Descendant ThumbUI
    An interfacethat will suite one handed use.
    Available under Settings -> Gestures and buttons
  • Smart notifications
    User can set the timespan in which continuous notification won’t trigger sounds
    Available under Settings -> App and notifications -> Notifications
  • Crash saver
    When an app will continuosly crash, user will have “Disable app” as an option in the dialog

Misc Enhancements

  • Launcher3 appseat has now a background color and its radius will follow system’s one
  • About phone has now Descendant a “Descendant preference category” that includes:
    Descendant version: tapping on it will redirect the user to Descendant blog;
    Do you need support?: tapping on it will redirect the user to Descendant’s support Telegram Group
  • Ambient ticker has been moved into Audio settings

Hardware support updates

  • Tracking latest phh sources plus the following additions:
    Workaround for HWC over Huawei phones;
    Workaround for BT oddities over Huawei phones;

Read more about Descendent GSI in the Treble Development Forum

About author

Aamir Siddiqui
Aamir Siddiqui

A journalist at XDA-Developers and the current Editor in Chief, I have been writing for XDA since 2015, despite being a qualified business-litigation lawyer. A low-end smartphone purchase in 2011 brought me to the forums, and it's been a journey filled with custom ROMs ever since. When not fully dipped in smartphone news and tutorials, I love traveling to places just to capture pictures of the sun setting. You can reach out to me at [email protected] And my Twitter is @aamirsidd94.

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