I like to write. Consequently, I’m constantly trying to optimize my writing tools. On a computer, I’m very satisfied by my Typematrix keyboard configured to use the Bépo keymap, which is the French Dvorak.
When typing, we use approximately 50 keys. Combined with Shift and Alt, this gives you more or less 150 characters. Some of them are dead keys, giving you even more characters but some are completely useless on a day-to-day basis. I’m writing mostly in French, which requires a lot more characters than English. How does it translate on a smartphone? I will share my experience and review the two most innovative solutions I’ve found: MessagEase and 8pen.
First of all, I consider that a smartphone or a tablet has nothing to do with a typewriter. As such, it’s completely silly to try to mimic a solution that was designed to work around hardware limitations. Each time I see a virtual QWERTY non-aligned keyboard on a tablet, I sigh.