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New iPhone Keyboard is Training Wheels for New Users

Debba Boles

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4i Concepts’s 4iThumbs2 is a stick on keyboard for the iPhone. The concept behind the stick on keyboard, available in both portrait and landscape mode for $13-$25 with bumper, is to get users comfortable with the virtual keyboard. According to an article by Doug Rule, Mobiledia, “4i Concepts’s 4iThumbs2 is an invisible, removable plastic film that sits over the face of an iPhone, with ridges between keys to help ensure a finger hits the intended key, not any of its neighbors. The film is held in place by a bumper, and can be easily removed and stored on the back of the phone when not in use. ”

“As the only tactile ridged screen for the iPhone, 4iThumbs2 is sort of like training wheels for new iPhone users, making their transition to a touch screen comfortable and easy, ” said Jerry Rosengarten, founder of 4i Concepts.

Have you sent embarrassing text messages because of typos? There is actually a website dedicated to the laughable and embarrassing mistakes. It’s called “Damn You Auto Correct. ” It features mistakes like “Your Mum and I are going to divorce next month, ” instead of “Your Mum and I are going to Disney next month. ” The founder of the site, Jillian Madison, has actually been offered a book deal due out this month, according to an article by Brian McCullough, Mobiledia. Perhaps this new keyboard will help that situation.

iPhone users seem to be more susceptible to texting errors than other Smartphone texters. According to the article on Mobiledia, apparently this is due to the fact that iPhone requires specific input to decline an auto suggestion, and many users are in too much of a hurry and just press “send” without checking. Not only can this be embarrassing but can be potentially career damaging, depending on who you are texting.

What about the Android users? So far there are no plans for a similar keyboard for the Droids. Perhaps this is because they vary in screen size. Regardless, Google has given the Android users several tools to help with their clumsy fingers. I think my personal favorite is Swype. It allows you to slide your finger along from letter to letter in a continuous motion and have the Swype app auto suggest words. Another tool Google offers on the Android is speech to text so you can dictate your testing. It works fairly well, and is of course editable.

Got any embarrassing text mistakes you want to share? Are you an iPhone user or use another Smartphone? The bottom line is that you should proofread your texts before sending. Yes, a keyboard trainer would help, but you still need to check your words.

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