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Thumb keyboard concept for the iPad

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Update: Try live working demo!

iPad will be a great device for casual reading and web surfing.   Not so for writing. The lack of tactile-feedback is one reason.  The form-factor is another.

The great thing about the iPad is being able to hold it in your hands. To use the default keyboard, you’d have to hold it in one hand while typing with the other — not so comfortable.  Or lay it on a flat surface, which takes away from the form-factor benefits.

Why not use your thumbs?  You can hold it with both hands and use both thumbs for typing.  Thumb-based keyboards are a plenty:

The default iPad keyboard (as gleamed from the photos), has 37 keys.

  • 26 – A-Z
  • 2 – right/left shift
  • 2 – right/left numeric
  • 2 – punctuation
  • 2 – meta
  • 1 – delete
  • 1 – search/enter

With inside screen dimensions (sans bevel border) of roughly 5.82″ x 7.76″, I estimate key dimension to be about .4″ for the typical alphanumeric keys, plus the space around it.

The length of my thumb is about 2 ½” long. So, including intra-key spacing, roughly four keys should be easily within reach of a single thumb.

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Written by Moos

February 17th, 2010 at 1:46 am

Posted in blog

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