A mobile wave of touchscreen devices has changed the way we interact with computers, but we still do an awful lot of traditional typing on those very small screens. One company that is working on improving the speed and accuracy of our mobile typing, TouchType, is getting additional investment in order to expand its business.
TouchType, makers of the popular SwiftKey Android application, plan to announce Wednesday that they have secured $2.4 million in a first round of investment as part of an internal round of financing. The money will allow the 30-person London-based company to hire additional engineers and work on expanding its revenue sources to include app developers and device makers who are willing to use its predictive typing technology to help power their text input fields, said Jon Reynolds, CEO of TouchType.
SwiftKey’s virtual keyboard is based on the premise that individuals have distinct typing styles; as in, a professional writer probably types differently as compared to a lawyer or a 15-year-old. But all of those people might be interested in saving time while entering text into a mobile device, which is why SwiftKey’s predictive typing app has consistently ranked among the more popular apps in the Android App Store and was featured as one of the special 10-cent apps promoted by Google (NSDQ: GOOG) in announcing the 10 billionth download of an Android app.
The company hopes to have its technology used on other mobile platforms such as iOS over time, Reynolds said. “Fundamentally, what we see is that the platform that we’re building is an enabler for text entry across a wide variety of factors,” he said.
Reynolds also said that TouchType has inked deals for the technology with several major handset makers, including Vizio for the release of its first Android tablet. He declined to name other licensees but said several companies had expressed interest in using the technology, and TouchType hopes to make licensing deals a greater percentage of its revenue in 2012.