Let’s face it, typing on touchscreens has never exactly been what you might call “easy”. This fact is doubled for tablets, and is the reason why third party bluetooth keyboards and the Microsoft Surface have been popular ideas. If you’re looking for productivity on a computer device, nothing beats a tactile keyboard.
Google has been trying very hard to get away from this issue. With recent versions of Android they have adopted new forms of text input from other third party applications, such as swipe gesture typing and aggressive word prediction and completion. Even so, typing on tablets is still best left to an external physical device.
A new patent filed by Google discovered today aims to make typing a little easier. It covers a method of recognizing 10 fingers and allowing for quick typing based on small swipes in the general area of where a key would be. Lift your hands on the air and pretend that you’re typing. Because of years of computer use and typing practice, most people have a muscle memory that allows them to accurately move their finger in the correct locations of the keys. This is often called “Touch Typing” and is a required skill for any modern office job.
The other issue with modern touch screens is their size, where it was not possible to fit a full size 10 finger keyboard on the screen while still allowing users to see the content. It appears this patent would have very translucent buttons on screen but would be able to know when you are tapping something and when you are typing. The software would be able to react accordingly.
If this sounds a bit complicated, don’t worry because you’re not alone. We’re just going to have to see if any more information is given on the patent before passing judgement. This might end up being a nice surprise being presented at the next Google I/O.
Source – Engadget
Twitter | Facebook | Google + | RSS