Modifying applications to support single-tap

Symbian^3 enhances the touch interaction by providing support for single-tap.


S60 5th Edition introduced touch support feature with double-tap to maintain binary and source code compatibility with the existing S60 3.x applications. The UI was focus driven, with the first tap for object selection (the corresponding event forwarded to the application) and the second tap for activation.

Symbian^3 enhances the touch support with single tap for achieving better usability and development of platform and 3rd party applications. The supporting UI is based on direct manipulation and is not focus driven, which means that a single-tap on the device selects and activates an event. This change modifies the touch behavior of certain UI components as listed below:
  • By default, none of the menu items are highlighted.

  • Item specific options are displayed in stylus menus rather than in options menus.

  • The side toolbar is hidden in the landscape layout view except in specific applications like the message viewer and editor.

It is highly recommended that you migrate your applications to single-tap to complement the platform UI behavior. However, if you do not migrate your applications to single-tap, they work the same way as in S60 5th Edition (touch support with double-tap).


  1. Include the EAknTouchCompatible and EAknSingleClickCompatible flags in your application's UI (CAknAppUi ) constructor.

    For example,

    void CFileBrowseBaseView::ConstructL() //Called from framework (CEikDocument)
        BaseConstructL(EAknEnableSkin | EAknEnableMSK | EAknTouchCompatible | EAknSingleClickCompatible);

    The EAknTouchCompatible flag enables touch functionality. The EAknSingleClickCompatible flag enables single-click functionality on the Symbian device.

    The following illustrations show how applications behave before and after the single-tap changes are made:

    Figure: Double-tap enabled: By default, UI component is highlighted.

    Figure: Single-tap enabled: By default, no UI component is highlighted.

  2. Hide item-specific commands from the application's menus, submenus and toolbars. Item-specific commands are functions that are specific to an item. For example, Edit is an item-specific command for an existing contact in the Phone book.

    As a result, all item-specific options are hidden in menus, submenus and toolbars and are displayed in the stylus popup menus.

  3. Activate items in a list on single-tap.

  4. Disable stylus popup menu in AVKON lists.

  5. Disable hardware key shortcuts.