Apple’s iPhone text entry can rival RIM’s BlackBerry

“Released about a week ago, Sax Software’s EasyWriter appears to solve most of the issues I’ve had with data entry on the iPhone — at least for email messages. It puts a wide keyboard in landscape mode with bigger keys and more importantly, more space between keys. With EasyWriter, I am confident to use both thumbs for entering text,” David Morgenstern reports for ZDNet.

“In addition, the EasyWriter supports the native multitouch pinch and zoom interface to increase or decrease text sizes. This really helps those of us whose vision deficits lead us to prefer bigger text,” Morgenstern reports.

“I note that the iPhone’s touchscreen text entry is the biggest worry that I hear from current BlackBerry owners. Most of them handle my iPhone with a wishful look in their eyes, and they sigh when handing it back to me. Then they say that with the amount of text they need to enter, a hardware keyboard is necessary,” Morgenstern reports.That argument looks to be in trouble with the arrival of EasyWriter.”

Full article here.

BlackBerry users would do better than briefly handling an iPhone and actually use it for a few days for text entry, whereupon – even without EasyWriter – they’ll discover to their shock and awe that they’re faster with iPhone text entry than they ever were with a BlackBerry festooned with anachronistic plastic buttons.

The only people concerned about Apple iPhone’s virtual keyboard are those who’ve never really used an iPhone’s virtual keyboard.

15 Comments

  1. MDN take: ‘The only people concerned about Apple iPhone’s virtual keyboard are those who’ve never really used an iPhone’s virtual keyboard.’

    Such as… David Morgenstern of ZDNet.

    MaWo: ‘distance’. As in, “If David hadn’t kept his from the iPhone for so long, he wouldn’t need a crutch like Sax Software’s EasyWriter.”

  2. The biggest “problem” I see with people attempting to use iPhone’s virtual keyboards is assuming that the auto-correction is auto-complete.

    It is NOT auto-complete — it’s not for expanding shortcuts. It’s for predicting and correcting typos. The mistake most make is to stop typing when they see an error instead of trusting that auto-correct will fix it. If you just keep going, the more letters you type the more accurate the auto-correct guess — and 96% of the time it gets the word you meant. But if you keep stopping and trying to fix your errors, typing takes forever and people get frustrated.

    So when you’re showing someone an iPhone, make sure you explain this! You’ll make a convert of them in minutes, I guarantee it. Once I show people how auto-correct works and they “get” it, they love it and are really impressed.

  3. iPhone keyboard works great for me.
    Only thing wrong with iphone text entry is that you cannot turn the suggestions off. I switch between texting and mailing in 4-5 different languages, and it keeps suggesting silly things from its english vocabulary. If I could only change suggestion-languages fast, i’d have no problem, but now i have to really keep an eye on what it’s foolishly suggesting all the time.

  4. “EasyWriter appears to solve most of the issues I’ve had with data entry on the iPhone — at least for email messages. It puts a WIDE KEYBOARD IN LANDSCAPE MODE with bigger keys and more importantly, more space between keys. With EasyWriter, I am confident to use both thumbs for entering text.”

    Notice that the author is referring to an app that uses a landscape keyboard, something I and many others have begged Apple to implement universally for over a year now.

    I’ve said time and time again that most complaints about typing on the iPhone stem from the fact that we’re forced to use the cramped vertical keyboard everywhere outside of Safari.

    Keep in mind, however, that applications like EasyWriter only allow you to type e-mails in landscape mode. No text messaging and you can’t view e-mails in landscape. It’s still a severely hampered compromise.

    RIM gets it. The touchscreen BlackBerry Storm allows for landscape typing throughout the interface. The question is when will Apple come around?

  5. zmarc,
    agreed…. i had that problem at first with my Touch… now I am at the point where i type and as soon as the suggestion pops up with my word, i hit the space bar to advance and let the Touch does it’s magic! This is one of the most underrated, under exposed advances of the software in my eyes. Big time saver for me.

    The Dude abides.

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