Gesture Based Cursor Navigation on iPad

I’ve been working a while now on Markable, a Markdown iOS text editor. One of the features it will have is the so-called gesture based cursor navigation familiar to this demonstrated concept.

There’s nothing wrong with the current implementation of text selection or cursor movement in iOS but if you often type on the iPad you’ll quickly notice that moving the cursor slows down your writing process. So I think that this concept will be appreciated by power users, who often use the iPad for writing.

Some apps in the App Store already use a familiar concept (a little bit modified to comply with Apple’s review guide). In the concept video the user performs a gesture on the keyboard. With my implementation the user performs a gesture in the text view. I did not yet see any app in the App Store do the first thing as it may not comply with Apple’s review guideline:

10.1: Apps must comply with all terms and conditions explained in the Apple iOS Human Interface Guidelines

10.3: Apps that do not use system provided items, such as buttons and icons, correctly and as described in the Apple iOS Human Interface Guidelines may be rejected

10.5: Apps that alter the functions of standard switches, such as the Volume Up/Down and Ring/Silent switches, will be rejected


I’ve made a simplified version of the swipe navigation that will be available in Markable. For now it’s all experimental and still needs a lot of work. E.g. the speed of cursor movement should be dependent on the speed of the gesture.


You can integrate it in your app with just two lines of code. First import DTSwipeCaretNavigation.h and enable the thing changing the swipeCaretNavigationEnabled in or on your UITextView.

self.textView.swipeCaretNavigationEnabled = YES;

That’s all. The code is available on Github so feel free to fork away and do your own thing.