11 Comments

Summary:

Starting today, T-Mobile’s MyTouch 3G enjoys a new keyboard input method in Swype. Instead of pecking away at the keys, you simply swipe your words without lifting a finger. And it’s not just for Android devices — an upcoming Windows Mobile handset will see it too.

swype

One of the challenges I’ve noticed on my Google Nexus One is the software keyboard. Obviously, I can use it since the device is my primary phone, but it’s not quite as good as the iPhone implementation. My speed is diminished just a tad and I occasionally revert to using voice-to-text for short bursts of input. That’s why I’m very interested in Swype — a new method for using that old QWERTY keyboard. Today, the company announced a product partnership with T-Mobile and the first fruit of that relationship is Swype on the myTouch 3G as of today. Swype isn’t just for Android handsets though — when the HD2 arrives for the T-Mobile network, it too will offer Swype as a companion to the native Windows Mobile software keyboard.

The video demo shows how quickly you can enter text, but like any other input method, there’s going to be an adjustment period. Luckily, there’s no new keyboard layout or any other barrier to adoption — you simply trace your words out, letter by letter, without lifting your finger. These days, I use two hands for data entry on handset keyboards, so Swype could free up a hand. While I haven’t tried the product yet, I’ve mimicked the method on my Nexus One and I think I can swipe text using just my thumb. I’ve just received the software a few minutes ago, so I’ll try it exclusively over the native input method for a few days and report back in.

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  1. Its not in the Android market yet, I suppose?

    1. I’m not so sure it will appear there. From my understanding, new myTouch 3G handsets will have it installed by default. As far as existing handsets, it could be in an OTA update. I’ll see if I can get clarification.

    2. If you want to try it right now on the N1 google for “nexus one landscape swype” and the first result will be there. You may want to get the Astro file browser to open it once it’s downloaded and you’ll need to approve the installation of applications from Unknown Sources in Settings->Applications, but it works brilliantly.

  2. I’m using it in Omnia II, is the best input method I saw for a touchscreen. I really easy to adapt to it. It took me only a few hours and it adds new words as you use it. Is no way back from swype. I just don’t like the key by key performance, but I don’t use much anyway. Simply the best!. I don’t imagine how it will perform in a capacitive screen.

    1. I installed it this afternoon and right out of the gate, I could type as fast as I could with the standard Android keyboard. That’s a positive sign because I’m expecting to become more proficient with it over time. Works great on a capacitive display.

  3. Definitely looking forward to your review, Kevin! TIA.

  4. They swiped what James covered in 2004!
    “Text Entry Epiphany for the Tablet PC SHARK” http://jkontherun.com/2004/11/03/text_entry_epip/

  5. I’ve tried both Swype and Shapewriter on the Nexus One. They are both faster than the standard keyboard, and each offers things the other doesn’t. Swype is faster and possibly more forgiving, but Shapewriter puts candidate words right above the keyboard, where they’re easier to get at. With Swype you have to do more stuff manually–like double letters, apostrophes in words, and capital letters after periods. With practice, though, it’s pretty much a toss-up.

  6. does this work with the ORIGINAL myTouch 3G???

  7. how do i get it on my Mytouch 3G??

  8. http://tablettouch.com/top-5-reasons-to-download-swype

    I hope I can add it to my iPhone…Please Mr. Steve Jobs? :)

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