Camera interface idea, opinions?
The stock Android camera has gotten a lot of flack. Some deserved, some not. While a lot is down to quality and speed, some is about the interface (the long-press menu and such). Being an interaction designer I got straight into "how-can-it-be-improved?" mode and over time have came up with a new idea/design.
Quick ninja edit: this is mostly about the menu since that bothers me most personally. The shutter buttons and mode switcher also have room for improvement. They're next.
But before showing it, let me bitch about the current interface.
The long press is slow, By it's very definition it introduces a delay in the interaction. Not only functionally but also psychologically this has a negative effect, you have to wait before continueing your action. This repeats when you hit submenu's.
The button is an alternative, but has a big disconnect between the button and the menu. It also opens the menu without requiring you to keep your finger on the screen, but the back button does not work within the menu. You only have one shot when digging deeper into the menus to get it right.
The required precision is too high. After the longpress you must keep your finger on the screen, slide exactly to a target, which is directly adjacent to (if you're lucky only) one other target. Selections with subsettings completely remove the original menu, making an incorrect choice hard to recover from.
The depth of the menu and reliance on purely icons makes it hard to find settings quickly and effectively. The ever changing location of the menu also prevents from visual or muscle memory helping you in this regard.
The indication of status is cluttered by stacking all the settings onto one icon. Again the reliance on icons makes things unclear.
My proposed solution
A hamburger menu. Side swipe menu. Slideout menu. Whatever-the-heck-we're-calling-it-this-week-menu:
This would be on the left side of the camera, opposite the Gallery.
This is based on Snap Camera, which is a modded version of the stock camera with a lot more options. Hence the many more options than are available now. People want more options though, imagine what would happen when Google just stacked those into the current interface..
Another advantage of this is that long-press can be used for more sensible things, like AF/AE lock or seperate exposure metering.
So, what do you guys think? Is this a better idea, or do you think the radial menu is awesome and people need to leave it alone? Personally I would combine this with a row of instant access buttons along the top of the screen for flash, ISO and WB.