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The sense of touch is a fundamental part of social interaction as even a short touch from another person can elicit emotional experiences. Previous studies on haptic communication indicate that the benefits of interpersonal touch exist even when touch is artificially mediated between people that are physically apart. In the current study an evaluation of three input gestures (i.e., moving, squeezing, and stroking) was conducted to identify preferred methods for creating haptic messages using a hand-held device. Furthermore, two output methods (i.e., one or four haptic actuators) were investigated in order to determine whether representing spatial properties of input gestures haptically provides additional benefit for communication. Participants created haptic messages in four example communication scenarios. The results of subjective ratings, postexperimental interviews, and observations showed that squeezing and stroking were the preferred ways to interact with the device. Squeezing was an unobtrusive and quick way to create haptic content. Stroking, on the other hand, enabled crafting of more detailed haptic messages. Spatial haptic output was appreciated especially when using the stroking method. These findings can help in designing haptic communication methods for hand-held devices.