A lot of people prefer physical keyboards than virtual ones on cell phones. In order to mimic physical keyboards experience, most cell phones have the vibration feature(i.e., the phone vibrates when people are typing). However, I don't think people like this feature based on my observation. Even when the feature is turned on by default, people tend to turn it off. Why is that? What's the rationale for having the vibration feature, maybe it's helpful for people with disabilities?

  • 1
    Welcome to SE.UX. Are you sure that "most" have it on by default? If so that must mean that I have turned them off on mine I don't even remember. That's possible of course.:-)
    – Mayo
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 21:49
  • Thanks. I said "most cell phones have the vibration feature", I didn't mean most of them are turned on by default. I know some of them are turned on by fault. :)
    – Wendy Wang
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 22:07
  • 3
    I don't think you might want to ask why people hate this feature because you asked it based on your observation (without any data). Maybe it's better if you have "What's the rationale for having the vibration feature?" as main question
    – selharxets
    Commented Apr 21, 2015 at 2:35
  • 1
    @DA01 Not mine (iPhone5). I would like to see some statistics added for "most cell phones have the vibration feature" and "A lot of people prefer physical keyboards".
    – jazZRo
    Commented Apr 21, 2015 at 9:09
  • 1
    I agree. We need more data to back up the claim.
    – DA01
    Commented Apr 21, 2015 at 16:15

2 Answers 2


Haptic feedback is provided to inform users that an interaction is taking place. To quote this research article about Haptic feedback on Keyboards

Consumers evaluating a standard Android keyboard say they prefer options that employ HD haptic effects compared to the non-haptics and standard haptics alternatives: With HD haptics, a virtual keypad feels more like a real keypad during the typing process.

That said, coming to your question why people turn it off,the issue with Haptic feedback on keyboards is that the feedback is continuous and that would be a distraction to users.

That said,haptic feedback does have its place in accessibility as this feedback mechanism is important to people with visual disabilities to be aware of the interaction between them and the device. To quote this article

Haptic feedback tablets are opening new doors for students with visual impairments, especially in math class. Haptic feedback provides a small vibration when the screen is touched allowing you to feel the screen. Haptic feedback is available on some Android phones and tablets. Some schools have begun to use tablets that vibrate went touched to allow visually impaired students to feel shapes and graphs.

  • Thanks for your answer, it's an interesting paper. I tried to find out why people turn it off, but I could only find some individual's opinion. I'm wondering if there is any research about it.
    – Wendy Wang
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 22:19
  • I've turned it off for a number of reasons. personally I don't need that level of feedback as the action is so simple and repetitive (especially typing) and also I'm trying to save battery!
    – Wander
    Commented Apr 21, 2015 at 11:17

One personal reason I don't like haptic feedback is that it is noisy. Watch someone type out a message/text with haptic feedback sometime - the noise catches your attention even if you're not the only one typing.

Another personal reason is because it eats up my battery time.

I found this article really interesting: http://m.pocketnow.com/2013/07/16/why-i-hate-haptic-feedback

Some users don't like it because it feels redundant. They can see they clicked the button with other UI clues - they don't need to be beaten over the head with it. The comments on the article also bring up an interesting point - so many of phones use a very strong haptic feedback - when perhaps a more gentle vibration would be better.

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.