In windows, it's a fairly common experience to stumble on an app with a horizontal scrollbar and be forced to click and drag the scrollbar (terrible UX), where as in most Mac devices you can simply swipe to the side. Some trackpads/mice simply do not offer side-swiping.

How common is side-swiping in Windows machines in 2015? All MacBooks, Magic trackpads, and Magic Mice do it natively. Is it safe to assume that the gesture will be ubiquitous in Windows machines by 2017?

Related answer on how to deal with the differences: How do Windows users interact with scrolling panes? I'm interested in the actual statistics rather than possible solutions.

  • Just to clarify the question, are you looking for how many windows based laptops have have "excellent trackpads with smooth scrolling in all directions" or how many have side scrolling at all?
    – DasBeasto
    Sep 8, 2015 at 13:07
  • Edited the question, is it more clear now?
    – Anson Kao
    Sep 8, 2015 at 15:52

1 Answer 1


I would say that it is becoming very common if this is not already the case.

Microsoft has been marketing the Surface Pro on all fronts, to the extent that it can be seen to have the processing capabilities of a desktop machine. You will find that the single OS/multiple device strategy for Windows that plagued the desktop users a little bit with Windows 10 actually offers a substantially better experience on mobile and tablets.

There are of course many legacy machines and operating systems that Microsoft has to deal with, but I think if you are just focusing on the latest and greatest from Microsoft, they are much further ahead of Apple in the use of a stylus (again this is for Surface Pro) and it is just where you are focusing your question on.

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