Researchers at St Andrews University have developed a new touch screen keyboard that they claim enables you to type messages and emails up to 34% quicker than a touch screen QWERTY keyboard. The new keyboard, which will be released as a free Android app, has been created specifically so that we can use it for two thumb typing.
The QWERTY keyboard has been in use for nearly 150 years and despite numerous attempts, it has never been dislodged as the favourite among users. The developers of the KALQ keyboard, though, say that it is not an optimal device for use on touch screens when we type using two thumbs rather than our full quota of digits.
They claim to have used computational optimisation techniques to place the letters in the most beneficial areas of the keyboard halves. All vowels are assigned to the right thumb with the letter Y assigned to the left thumb. These changes, combined with correctional algorithms led to 34% faster touch screen typing, which represented the fastest ever recorded speed on a device of this type.
The KALQ keyboard will be made available on Play Store, but Apple’s refusal to allow third party changing of the iOS keyboard means it will not be available for the iPhone or iPad. While many people are likely to download and try the new keyboard, most of us are accustomed to QWERTY keyboards and familiarity is the most likely obstacle to this new technology.