In an Android 2.1+ app I have a list of items belonging to categories. Clicking an item will perform a search for items in that item's category. Clicking a search result will repeat this action (i.e. show the same list). At any time, long clicking an item will open that item for editing/deletion. The rationale is that you will be adding and comparing items far more often than you should need to edit or delete existing items. However, seeing as nothing is gained by repeating a search I wonder if it would be reasonable/sensible to change the click behaviour to work like long clicks after a search has been performed, and either disable long click or find some other use for it in that context (like show a menu that lets you quickly delete an item), or if that would cause confusion.

I am aware that long click may be being phased out in favour of more obvious interaction. I feel the alternative would confuse interaction and/or crowd the interface and I'm not worried about users not being aware of long click, so I prefer to use that. However, if anyone has an opinion on my implementation versus always bringing up a context menu I'd like to hear it.

  • what do you mean by Clicking an item will perform a search for items in that item's category ? Can you eloborate ?
    – Mervin
    Commented Aug 21, 2012 at 8:40
  • That wording was (poorly) chosen because category is the only value you can search on. Effectively, clicking an item just brings up a list of all items in the same category and nothing else.
    – Quail
    Commented Aug 21, 2012 at 8:47
  • An item is a category ? Or do you mean every similar item in that category will be called out ?
    – Mervin
    Commented Aug 21, 2012 at 8:50
  • The latter. Categories do not exist as items.
    – Quail
    Commented Aug 21, 2012 at 8:53

1 Answer 1


I think the person who asked the question Indicate long click option to user on Android referenced in your question specified the challenge clearly ie.

a lot of users are not aware of this long click metaphor (yet?)

Generally touching a linked or selecting a linked item is used to drill down to the details of that specifically selected item and your current implementation is confusing since it seems to again pull up all items similar to that specific item.This is not expected as people dont usually expect a search result on selecting an item.

With regards to the use of long click to create a menu to delete/edit an item,since there is no visual indicator unless the user activates the long click , people might totally miss the functionality. I would recommend going for a simplistic dropdown icon to highlight potential functionaries which can be used or provide the deletion/edit option in the item details when the item is selected on a short click


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.