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Facebook recently updated their iphone's navigation, to tabs at the bottom. I am curious as to why they did not also do this with their iPad app? I guess you don't see the bottom tabs very often on the iPad, but if they are willing to do it for the iPhone why not for the iPad?

Any thoughts? Or logic as to why they stuck with the slide out drawer (Hamburger Menu) on the iPad?

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It is obviously difficult to justify why they made this particular product design decision (without being in a design meeting to hear the discussion).

My thought would be that they are attempting to optimize gesture inputs.

Luke Wroblewski did an excellent write-up a while back about Responsive Navigation: Optimizing for Touch Across Devices. You'll notice that the previous "hamburger menu" was in the Hard to access zone for standard touch input. Their new solution places the key features within a short gesture of the thumb. On the iPad, the hamburger treatment is in the OK zone.

One could also argue that they wanted to elevate the primary functionality, and allow context switching in the application without having to toggle a menu constantly.

  • Thanks and +1 for the link and quick summary to Luke W.'s great posting – greenforest Oct 12 '13 at 23:30

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