(Opinion) Physical keys vs Soft keys

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Jan 2, 2014 10:02:23 AM

I've had phones with both and probably now prefer softkeys. Physical keys give you proper tactile feedback and don't take up screen estate, but can show signs of wear eventually and detract from clean lines. If you're new to softkeys it can take a while to familiarise yourself with them, but with KitKats immersive mode they no longer affect the display.

Sinkster

Jan 4, 2014 12:00:42 AM

Soft keys for sure. KitKat's transparent system bars remove the black bars anyway (and the black bar for soft keys is usually occupied by actual phone (ie not screen) to house the physical keys on other devices). Plus, with soft keys you can customize them how you want, like on the G2 or with a custom ROM or alternate launcher. I'm using an S4 right now that has a sticky home key - no problems there with soft keys.

Jan 6, 2014 1:25:02 AM

I'm using a Galaxy S4. The physical keys don't bother me to much, however I will say from playing around on my friend's Nexus, I'd much rather have soft keys. They just feel a whole lot nicer plus I think they look better too.

Jan 10, 2014 11:16:16 PM

Soft all the way. They can disappear in games or video playback, they allow for swipe-up-for-GoogleNow, they're prettier when the device's off and rotate when's one and if in future Google decide to add or change the buttons set you don't need a new phone, just an update.

And I think they're much more responsive and easy-to-tap than a physical button such as Samsungs' central one.