Posted by JaimeDavis at 3:53 PM on November 27, 2011
If you have been eying the new Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade for Android, but aren’t sure if/when it will come to your device then this may serve as at least a bit of good news. One part of Android Ice Cream Sandwich, the keyboard, is now available for Android 2.2 and greater devices via a port that’s available in the Android Market.
The new keyboard features a slightly different color scheme, with the keyboard being a darker shade of grey and the predictive text appearing in blue, instead of the previous green. You can also now click the underlined (with three dots) predictive word to get a list of more options. The keyboard settings also contain some additional options.
If you haven’t previously installed a custom keyboard on your Android then there are a couple of tricks you need to understand. The keyboard doesn’t automatically become your default and it doesn’t appear in your installed apps. To enable it, you will need to go to your device settings and click “Language and Keyboard”. Click to enable the “Ice Cream Sandwich Keyboard”, and then go to “Input Method” and choose the “Ice Cream Sandwich keyboard”.
Posted by tomwiles at 10:04 AM on October 17, 2011
A couple of weeks ago I finally bought an iPad. At the time of purchase, I also bought a inexpensive Griffin iPad case. For about $90, I could have bought a case that came with an integrated Bluetooth keyboard, but I thought that was a bit much for something I really didn’t need considering I’ve got laptop computers coming out my ears.
I was eating in a Flying J truck stop a couple of evenings ago and when I came out of the Denny’s restaurant and into the truck stop’s convenience store area I happened to notice they had a table set up with marked-down items. They had a small quantity of Bluetooth Case/Keypads that also came bundled with a 12-volt USB charging port and AC USB adapter port with the Micro USB charging cable (“Transit” brand model #11017), marked down to $15.
For $15, I figured I couldn’t go wrong!
It turns out that I ended up with a tremendous bargain. The keyboard painlessly paired up with the iPad Bluetooth, and to my surprise the case is for an iPad 2 so I can use the iPad’s built-in cameras. I was even more surprised to discover that when folded up, it is engineered to automatically put the iPad to sleep and also automatically wakes it back up when it is unfolded just like the Apple smart covers. When folded, it isn’t much thicker than the typical third party cushioned iPad case, and when unfolded props the iPad screen up in a vertical laptop-style position. The iPad fits securely in position in the sleeve, yet is easily removable.
As I expected, the 45-hour charge silicone rubber keyboard does not offer the greatest typing experience in the world, but it’s a million times better than trying to touch-type on glass. The typing experience is very similar to typing on the typical netbook keyboard.
This morning, Michael Arrington reported that Nuance is going to purchase Swype for over $100 million. This is the technology that lets you slide your finger across the on-screen keyboard to spell out words. It is also known that Nuance works with the new Apple product called “Siri“. Therefore, will we see this technology available for Apple keyboards, soon?
Let’s hope so.
Swype is a technology first discovered at TechCrunch a couple years ago. It was incorporated in some smartphones and found by moving the finger around as opposed to tapping, a person could type words a lot faster. This is the video TechCrunch put out in 2009:
Siri uses Nuance Technology – even though you might not find someone at Apple or Nuance that will say that. Before Siri was purchased by Apple, it had Nuance as the background software. The company tried Vlingo, but it just didn’t fit Siri’s programming.
So is it safe to say that Nuance is part of Siri? Well, unless Apple was working on their own software to replace Nuance, then yes. If they did change, then we would have heard something of them splitting. Let’s not even get into any patent debate that would have been reported if Apple was developing their own software.
As I always say: The possibility is there, but the probability is pretty low.
Swype on iPhone, iPad
Let’s get back to this idea – I used Swype technology and love it. By moving one finger across the screen keeps my eyes on the keyboard and not switching back and forth to what I am typing. Add in the spellcheck and I could be typing 40-45 words a minute on a mobile device (as opposed to 30 words a minute currently). Swype on iPad would be better, especially since most people use a one-hand type method if they are standing with the device coddled in the other arm.
With a personal dictionary, extensive language support and predictive tap suppot, Swype could be a great added feature to the Apple iPhone. Of course, it would also be a great addition to an Android phone, too (which is available with the FlexT9 Android Application).
So far, this is just a pipe-dream. But if it becomes a reality, the Siri application just got a little bit cooler.
Posted by KL Tech Muse at 11:15 AM on March 14, 2011
I needed a bluetooth keyboard that I could use with my iPad. I did take a look at the Apple keyboard, it looked very nice, but expensive. I wasn’t sure I wanted to spend $70.00 on something that there was a good chance I would spill something on or leave it somewhere. So I kept looking, I was on the Newegg site picking up an HDMI splitter and I saw the AZiO Keyboard. It said it was iPad ready and it was white, plus it was about $40 cheaper then the Apple keyboard. It is like the Apple wireless keyboard in that it doesn’t have the number keys on the side, but since I never use them anyway I don’t miss them. It does have an extra column on the right hand side which has function keys f14 thru f16, plus page up and page down, so it is slightly larger then the Apple keyboard.
While connecting the keyboard to the iPad I did have to push the connection button on the keypad twice , when it lost connection. However once it was connected and I entered the number given I have not lost the connection since then. The keyboard feels like it was build out of lego parts, another words a little plasticly and cheap. The keys are like chiclets and do make a clicking sound when you type. The Apple keyboard feels much more substantial and better made. If you want a keyboard that looks good and is silent then I would lean toward the Apple keyboard. However if you just want a keyboard that you can throw in a bag with your iPad and it works, but it you loose it no big deal, then the AZiO KB333BM keyboard is perfect. It is available through various sites, including NewEgg where you can get it for $39.00.
Posted by KL Tech Muse at 1:27 AM on January 28, 2011
Esbjorn Larsen interviewed Bruce with KB Covers. KB Covers offers customized keyboard for the full Apple keyboard line, including desktops and lap tops. KB make over 300 different types of covers. There are simple clear covers for both the full and lap top keyboard. They also make preprinted special-purposed keyboard covers for showing the keyboard shortcuts for Adobe, Final Cut Pro, and Photoshop.
If you are learning or any of these applications, these keyboards will show you all shortcuts that are available. They also make covers for specific languages such as a Japanese, Arabic and Hebrew keyboard. They even offer a keyboard cover for the World of Warcraft game. The covers feels silky and smooth and helps to quiets the keys. The covers can be cleaned with mild dish soap. If you are looking for a keyboard cover for your apple product, then KB Covers will have what you are looking for.
Just before Christmas, Qmadix launched this very neat portfolio case for the Apple iPad that includes a slim bluetooth keyboard. The case doubles as a stand and the keyboard can be removed from the portfolio if it’s not going to be used. Comes in a range of colours, too. Available now from Fry’s for a penny under $130.
Also on the video are Qmadix’s Qi-Wear by iHarmonix, stereo bluetooth sunglasses. Not cheap at $279, but look cool.
Posted by KL Tech Muse at 3:04 PM on January 23, 2011
The iPad virtual keyboard works great if you are just typing some short notes or an email. However if you are typing a long document, you may prefer a regular keyboard. Unfortunately once you start carrying a regular keyboard you might as well be carrying a computer.
Zagg has a solution, a cover with the keyboard in it. On the back edge of the cover there is a support which you pull up and lean your iPad against it. The support can go into 10 different angles. Allowing you to place the iPad as you like it. The keyboard is right there in front of you in the case.
When you done with your work, remove the iPad, put down the support, lay the ipad on top of the cover face down and close. You are ready to go in less than a minute. The case is made of high-grade tough aluminium, which matches the color of the iPad. The Zaggmate only adds 1/8 of an inch of thickness to the iPad. The ZaggMate with keyboard is $99.00, without the keyboard it is $69.00. So if you are looking for a well made cover with keyboard included you might want to take a look at the Zaggmate
Just a quick heads-up for anyone looking for a great Media Center (HTPC) keyboard. Vidabox is offering their keyboard today for US $55. I reviewed this keyboard a while back. I have been using it for over a year now and still love it. It has small trackball at the top right and the left/right click mouse buttons are on the top left. In between are a host of buttons for Play, Fast Forward, Rewind, Pause, etc., which are compatible with Windows Media Center. The keyboard works via RF so you don’t need direct line of site to your HTPC and don’t even have to open the cabinet door of your entertainment rack. It’s about the size of a laptop keyboard so it fits nicely in the drawer of the coffee table too.
I paid $79 when I purchased mine, but it now retails for $62 and is only $55 today. I am almost tempted to buy a second one just in case something happens to the first. It’s that good.