Can you imagine tapping out all of your email messages, Facebook status updates and Twitter tweets using a numeric keypad with 3 or 4 letters on every key? I’m sure a few people still do that. But, it can’t be much fun. Prior to the iPhone, most on-screen touch keyboards required a stylus or were add-ons to the phone that didn’t quite work with everything else. Despite its own issues, current generation on-screen keyboards has allowed manufacturers to remove the physical keyboard and make phones lighter and thinner. And, of course, on-screen keyboards lets you quickly check-in, email, and update status.
Microsoft Windows Phone Blog has a pointer to a great easy-to-read Microsoft Research piece that provides background details on the design of Windows Phone’s on-screen keyboard.
The science behind the Windows Phone keyboard (Microsoft Windows Phone Blog)
Windows Phone 7: A Better Keyboard (Microsoft Research)
Microsoft’s Itai Almog, who lead the engineering effort for Windows Phone’s on-screen keyboard, offers seven keyboard tips. Here are three of the tips he offers that are my favorites:
2. Double-tap Space at the end of a sentence to add a period and capitalize the start of the next sentence.
3. Tap & hold various keys to reveal hidden menus. The period key is especially handy.
6. To undo auto-correction: tap the word, then tap the first candidate (the original word) in the suggestion bar.