Gestures in Jetpack Compose: Getting Began


Discover ways to implement completely different gestures in Jetpack Compose and supply your app an intuitive person expertise.

Gestures are important to a cell app as a result of they foster an intuitive person expertise and create a cleaner interface. Eliminate clunky UI and use frequent gesture interplay to make your app extra pleasant. Small modifications could make your app higher.

Migrating from XML-based layouts to Compose has modified a lot of how we create gestures. On this tutorial, you’ll discover ways to set up the next gestures within the new Jetpack Compose paradigm:

  • How to reply to single faucets on buttons and different view varieties.
  • Dealing with double faucets on listing objects.
  • Scrolling lists of uniform objects and nonuniform objects.
  • Swiping to dismiss content material in lists.

Getting Began

You’ll be working by way of a to-do listing app to higher perceive frequent gestures and how one can combine them in Compose.

Use the Obtain Supplies button on the high or backside of this tutorial to obtain the challenge. Open the starter challenge in Android Studio. You’ll see the preliminary display screen for the to-do listing app:

Image showing the initial todo-list screen

If you happen to begin exploring the information, Inside ui folder, you’ll see two essential composables: TodoListComposable.kt and TodoEditorComposable.kt. These are the 2 major screens that present an inventory of to-do objects, and an editor so as to add objects and modify earlier ones.

But, you’ll be able to’t work together with something within the app at this level. You’ll replace that with the ability of gestures.

Introduction to Jetpack Compose Gestures

If you happen to’ve been growing UI in XML-based layouts, you may surprise how one can add listeners to Jetpack Compose elements. For essentially the most half, you don’t must. Slightly than including listeners to inflated views, whereas working with Jetpack Compose, you’ll be able to add gesture modifiers and gesture callbacks on to the composables while you declare them.

Detecting Faucets

Faucets are the only and most necessary type of interplay in cell apps. They signify a single finger press and launch to point choice. In your app, they’re essential to work together with the entire buttons and to-do listing objects.

Single Tapping

First, open TodoListComposable.kt and substitute the TODO: Add click on occasion remark contained in the onClick callback.

onClick = { navController.navigate(Locations.EDITOR_ROUTE) },

This can now navigate to the editor display screen for a brand new to-do merchandise creation.

Subsequent, add this callback in TodoEditorComposable.kt to interchange the TODO: Add click on occasion remark within the save Button:

onClick = {
  todo?.let {
    // Replace merchandise if it already exists
    todoEditorViewModel.updateTodo(todo, title = title.worth, content material = content material.worth)
  } ?: run {
    // Add new merchandise if one does not exist already
    todoEditorViewModel.saveTodo(title = title.worth, content material = content material.worth)

  // Navigate again to the to-do listing display screen after saving modifications

This motion saves a brand new occasion — if the display screen was navigated to with out a to-do merchandise however simply updates the merchandise if one was handed. It then returns to the to-do listing by popping the again stack.

Now, add a clickable modifier to the to-do listing merchandise in TodoListComposable.kt the place it asks TODO: Add clickable modifier.

.clickable {

This makes use of Compose navigation to navigate to the editor display screen and move the to-do merchandise ID as a navigation argument. Be aware that we added the clickable modifier to all the row. It should open the editor for the merchandise on click on.

Construct and run the app. You need to be capable to work together with the entire buttons and the to-do listing now.

Gif demonstrating tap interactions

You might add the clickable modifier to a component inside the row to make a sure part clickable. Solely that factor would set off the motion.

Now it’s time to study the double faucet!

Double Tapping to Star

The subsequent function you’ll work on is making to-do listing parts “star-able” in an effort to draw consideration to them. Within the present app, a single click on isn’t potential as a result of it opens the editor. You’ll be able to add an empty star button that the person might faucet as soon as to star the merchandise, however that may start to bloat the UI. As an alternative we are able to use one other frequent gesture — double tapping.

Double faucets are added inside a barely completely different modifier than the extra generic button onClick. Add the next modifier to the road in TodoListComposable.kt labeled TODO: Add pointer enter modifier.

.pointerInput(Unit) {
    onDoubleTap = { todoListViewModel.toggleStarred(merchandise) }

The detectTapGestures operate permits extra flexibility to detect faucet inputs, which embody:

  • onPress — the preliminary press down of a faucet is first detected.
  • onDoubleTap — two faucets in fast succession.
  • onLongPress — a single press held down.
  • onTap — after a single press and launch.

Utilizing these further gestures permits you to develop the vary of interactions with much less further code.

As a result of the detectTapGestures modifier can even settle for single faucets, you’ll be able to do away with the clickable modifier and add that motion to the detectTapGestures operate, if you wish to clear up the code a bit.

.pointerInput(Unit) {
    onTap = { 
    onDoubleTap = { todoListViewModel.toggleStarred(merchandise) }

Construct and run the app. It ought to star and unstar a row on double faucet.

Gif demonstrating double tap to star

Dealing with Scrolling Gestures

You’ll be able to solely show a number of objects without delay, after which you need to scroll to point out what’s off-screen. Scrolling performs a job of a necessary gesture right here.

Default Scrolling Habits

Making content material scrollable occurs in two major methods: By placing it in a Column/Row or in a LazyColumn/LazyRow. A daily Column/Row isn’t scrollable by default, however we’ve got a modifier for that!

LazyColumn/LazyRow are scrollable by default however sometimes are solely used for homogenous lists of parts or lengthy lists that couldn’t render suddenly.

At the moment, each the listing display screen and the editor display screen are applied with Columns, which doesn’t help scrolling. That may trigger main dysfunctions with the app. You could have a collection of repeating parts on the listing display screen, which is an effective spot for a LazyColumn.

In TodoListComposable.kt, discover the // TODO: Change to LazyColumn remark and substitute the present Column implementation with the next LazyColumn:

LazyColumn(modifier = Modifier.padding(16.dp), content material = { 
  objects(objects) {
    TodoListItem(it, todoListViewModel, navController)

This code is sort of an identical to the earlier code, besides it makes use of LazyColumn as an alternative of Column to reap the benefits of the automated scrolling. It makes use of the built-in objects operate to generate an inventory of homogenous parts from an inventory of knowledge.

And similar to that, the to-do listing scrolls! You’ll be able to check it by including a bunch of latest to-dos utilizing the plus button on the listing display screen:

Gif demonstrating how to add a new item

And after getting sufficient, you’ll be able to drag the listing up and down:

Gif demonstrating list scrolling

The editor display screen doesn’t have repeating parts, however it’s going to nonetheless be useful to have it scrollable in case the enter content material ever spreads past the display screen. You’ll be able to add an everyday scrollable modifier to the Column containing editor inputs in an effort to enable scrolling off display screen.

Open TodoEditorComposable.kt and substitute the // TODO: Add vertical scroll code with the next modifier.


This permits the Column to scroll when content material goes off the display screen and supplies a state holder to retailer the scroll place and deal with recomposition.

Construct and run the app. Now you’ll be able to write a complete manuscript within the to-do merchandise and be capable to see all of it.

Gif demonstrating editor scrolling

Swipe to Dismiss

You continue to want a approach to take away to-do objects with out including further buttons and protecting your UI tidy and exquisite!

A often used gesture for this use case is “swipe to dismiss.” It really works by dragging a component both to the left or proper and as soon as the merchandise passes a sure threshold, it slides off the display screen and triggers an motion.

That is such a standard use that it’s now a part of the androidx.compose.materials library as its personal composable. Step one is to create a state holder inside the listing merchandise’s composable. You’ll be able to add the next code on the TODO: Add swipe to dismiss state in TodoListComposable.kt.

val dismissState = rememberDismissState(confirmStateChange = {
  if (it == DismissValue.DismissedToEnd) {

This creates the motion related to the SwipeToDismiss element. It should set off when the factor is swiped, calling the view mannequin methodology to take away the row merchandise.

Subsequent, add the SwipeToDismiss element. In TodoListComposable.kt, substitute TODO: Wrap with swipe to dismiss and the TodoListRowContent operate name with:

  state = dismissState,
  dismissThresholds = { FractionalThreshold(0.5f) },
  instructions = setOf(DismissDirection.StartToEnd),
  // TODO: Add high layer UI
  // TODO: Add backside layer UI
  • The state argument passes the SwipeToDismiss state holder, which triggers state change actions.
  • The threshold prevents triggering the state till the factor has been dragged by a sure proportion of the display screen. On this case, the row should be over 50% of the display screen earlier than it’s dismissed.
  • Lastly, the instructions tells the element to solely enable drag from left to proper. If the person tries to pull the opposite manner, it’s going to nudge in that course earlier than returning to its common place. It’s helpful as a result of you may want context-specific actions comparable to archiving if a person drags to the left and deleting if a person drags to the proper. If you happen to add further instructions right here, you could additionally replace the state holder to deal with these state modifications.

Now you’ll be able to add the UI portion of the composable. Add the next snippet as an argument to SwipeToDismiss the place the TODO: Add high layer UI is.

dismissContent = {
  TodoListRowContent(merchandise, todoListViewModel, navController)

The UI for SwipeToDismiss consists of two layers: the high layer row content material and the background content material that’s uncovered when the highest layer is swiped away. The dismissContent is the highest stage content material whereas the background is the layer beneath it, which is seen on swipe.

On this case, you’ll be able to add a trash icon for the background to point that the dismiss motion will take away the factor from the listing. Add the next beneath the dismissContent argument.

background = {
    painterResource(id = R.drawable.ic_baseline_delete_outline_24),
    modifier = Modifier
    contentDescription = null,
    tint = Shade.Purple

This provides a trash icon behind the unique row content material so when the person swipes the row, the intent of the motion might be clear.

You’ll be able to run the app now and see your new swipe-to-dismiss gesture. Nevertheless, you may discover one closing gotcha.

Whenever you swipe to delete an merchandise, it doesn’t swipe off display screen utterly. That’s as a result of the composable objects are being recycled within the LazyColumn, however the underlying information set modifications aren’t capable of convey the recomposition. To inform the LazyColumn the underlying information ought to recompose the factor, replace the LazyColumn merchandise creation with:

objects(objects, key = { }) {

The important thing related to information ID tells the LazyColumn that every information factor ought to correspond to its personal composable and may refresh the composable when the information modifications. Construct and run the app. You need to see the swipe-to-dismiss working like a attraction!

Gif demonstrating swipe to dismiss

The place to Go From Right here?

You’ll be able to obtain the ultimate challenge by utilizing the Obtain Supplies button on the high or backside of this tutorial.

The gestures coated on this tutorial ought to get you thru most eventualities, but when you must implement others, take a look at the Official Documentation.

You can also proceed studying about Jetpack Compose from the Jetpack Compose by Tutorials e book.

Proceed your Jetpack Compose journey. A lot stays to discover. :]

When you’ve got any questions or feedback, please be part of the discussion board dialogue beneath!


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