Programming + Design

Two Android Apps for Easier Typing PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brett Brewer   
Thursday, 12 August 2010

I stumbled across a couple of neat apps for my Android OS phone (HTC Incredible) that offer two new approaches to speed typing on a touchscreen.

The first is called Swype (UPDATE: It's not actually available yet for the HTC Incredible or most other phones). It allows you to slide your finger from one letter to the next, tracing out a geometric shape with your finger as you do so. This allows words to be recognized by the shape you trace out on the phone's screen as you slide from letter to letter, so you theoretically don't need to be as accurate, so long as you're consistently innacurate. I've read some reviews of Swype and people generally either seem to love it or hate it. The demos I saw made the software look somewhat sluggish at recognizing words, and if it's not sure about the word you still have to choose from a list just like the word recognition built into the standard AndroidOS keyboard. Here's a video that shows how it works:


The other app that aims to make typing easier is called ThickButtons . ThickButtons watches what you're typing and tries to increase the size of the letters you are most likely to need next. For English and the romantic languages, it actually doesn't require much processing power to do something like this since most western language words have common prefixes and word stems. Anyway, it seems like another decent idea and most reviews I've read seem fairly positive. Check it out the video:

Of course, I haven't tried either app myself. I try to avoid typing on my phone at all costs, but I plan to try them both eventually and report back. Maybe I'll even start typing more on my phone.

UPDATE: I have finally gotten around to trying ThickButtons on my HTC Incredible and I definitely like it. Anxiously awaiting the arrival of Swype. 

Last Updated ( Saturday, 14 August 2010 )
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