Google Pixel 4 gets a new increased touch sensitivity option in Android 11
Android 11 Developer Preview 1 was released today, and as expected, we have a flurry of activity going on. The download links are available for the Google Pixel devices and GSIs for other Android phones, and we have explained the installation procedure. We have detailed the new privacy-focused features as well as the new developer features. We are also working on showing all the user-facing changes in the first developer preview. One basic user-facing change is that the Google Pixel 4 phones have got a new increased touch sensitivity option in Android 11.
The new option lives in the display settings. Its purpose is to increase the touch sensitivity of the display for users using screen protectors. This is a fairly common option across the smartphone industry. Some screen protectors, particularly of the tempered glass variety, introduce issues with touchscreen sensitivity if they are not precisely applied on the display. The advent of 2.5D glass and then curved 3D glass has only made life harder for users of tempered glass screen protectors, and that is why this option exists in many custom user interfaces. Now, Google has brought it to the Pixel 4 on Android 11 Developer Preview 1.
It should be noted that touch sensitivity is different from the refresh rate of the display. The ASUS ROG Phone II has a refresh rate of 120Hz, for example, while sampling touch data at 240Hz. The Apple iPhone 11 Pro has a 60Hz screen refresh rate while having a 120Hz touch sample rate. Touch sensitivity on Android phones was problematic in the past, but over the last couple of years, it has generally improved to the point where it is a non-issue. However, phones with high refresh rate (HFR) displays will still feel more responsive to the touch (UI fluidity) as they are refreshing the display image thirty or sixty times more per second in case of 90Hz and 120Hz displays respectively.
For Google Pixel 4 users using a tempered glass screen protector, the new increased touch sensitivity option should come in helpful. This will almost certainly be carried over to the first Android 11 beta, so users not wanting to mess with fastboot to install a developer preview will have to wait a bit more.
Thanks to XDA Senior Member cstark27 for the tip and screenshot!