I think most of us would agree that the iPhone keyboard is one of the best soft touch keyboards around. The keys are very responsive and touches are accurate. I also think Apple could stand to modernize a bit. Though their standard keyboard is great, they are falling behind the times when it comes to alternative text input.

While many of Google’s Android handsets come with options like Swype preinstalled, Apple customers are left sitting on the bank throwing rocks. Those who have played with Swype know what I’m talking about, the concept is amazing. You just draw a line with your finger from letter to letter of the word you want to type on the virtual keyboard…

The technology behind Swype is really what I’m after, Apple can call it whatever they want. Not only does it allow you to scribe words by drawing lines to letters, it learns your style of writing throughout the whole process. This unique style of typing has proven itself over and over again to be the future of text input. So why hasn’t Apple jumped on board?

Maybe they think customers are content with the current keyboard offering, and they’re probably right for the most part. There’s also the slight chance that they could be working on their own input technology for iOS 5.

I’m not much for predictions, but I do wonder what’s been stopping Swype from coming to the iOS platform. I’m also curious as to what happened to ShapeWriter in the App Store, and why 8Pen never made it to iOS.

We’re not dying without an alternative texting option, but it sure would be nice to have a choice. I guess we’ll just have to add it to our long wish-list of features to see added in future iOS releases.

Would you like to see a Swype-style keyboard in iOS? Know of any jailbreak options other than MobType?

  • SoCoMagNuM

    i messed around with Swype. Its alright. it would be cool to have the option to be honest. im content with the current pad though like Cody said…no ones dying over it.

    • Jon Garrett

      Google better hurry up and patent it before apple uses it in its next OS then try to claim ownership of the technology.

  • It could be a patent is stopping them.

  • Thnok

    It would be a great addition but I wonder if the swype will the work with small screen size.

  • A

    Wouldn’t make a difference to me. There should be one clear and obvious way of doing something so essential to the device. So far it’s been the competition busy overloading their UIs with all this “smart” stuff, for me more as an excuse as they seem unable to compete with Apple on the fundamentals.

  • Steve

    I would like to the option to add words to dictionary

    • Bisco

      its called ManualCorrect Pro
      available in Cydia

  • XepptizZ

    I tried shapewriter. It’s interesting and probably uncomparable with he real swyoe, but it’s the best comparison i have.

    It was a resource hog, a huge one at that. And though it was pretty decent and it definitly is awesome for one handedtexting, it also gets progressivly more difficult the longer the word gets to get it right. There is no pause for midword thinking and it sometimes gets a bit to complecated for the program to fully interpret what I’m swyping.

  • willy

    i would admit that the android keyboard sucks

  • Andrew

    I had swype on my Eris and couldn’t do without it, it has a smaller screen than the iPhone and it worked great. It’s the first thing I looked into when I got my iPhone and I’m consistently disappointed that it’s not available.

  • The Founder of Swype negotiated with Apple. They tried to buy Swype, which was turned down. Apple refused to adopt this technology without exclusivity

  • It is important to recognize that Swype would be silly on the iPad, unless they shrink the size of the virtual keyboard

  • MrA

    Nobody with swype can type more wpm than me on my iPhone 4 using regular keyboard. The iPhone autocorrect is more impressive than most because it learns and updates itself the more you type. Swype is a fun gimmick, but I know no one using it as their primary text input on any phone.

    • Alex

      Didn’t you read the article above? The record for the fastest text message in the world beat was achieved by a swype user.

      The girl typed “the razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human” in 25.94 seconds beating out the previous record of 35.54 seconds.

      Try typing that out in under 26 seconds with your regular keyboard!

      I also have a friend who uses the technology as their primary text input. I’ve tried it before a little bit on a friend’s droid and if the iphone had it I’d use it. I’m a fast typer but sliding just feels much more comfortable for my hands.That comfort factor may not bother people who don’t text a lot but it’s noticeable for me.

  • MrA

    I read the article yes, but I didn’t click on any of the hyperlinks if that’s what your refrencing.

    Who knows if I had an option I may use it. I just know that the prediction text on iOS is the best of any I’ve used. I’m able to type one handed without looking and have surprisingly good accuracy. I use thousands of text a month so I’m a heavy text-er too.
    Oh and I did time myself texting those sentences, I did it in 25.93 secs. :p
    Just a bit quicker 😉

    What I think apple should do though is add a number row above the current keyboard instead of being forced to push the “123” button. I think that could be added without sacrificing too much screen real estate.

    • Alex

      Ha, I guess you can keep your title. The apple keyboard I agree is very good, I doubt the average user can blind type with the iPhone keyboard however so I believe Apple should at least allow some alternatives via the app store if they aren’t gonna work on some for themselves.

      You can actually find Cydia apps that add the number row. I don’t remember what it’s called but I saw an article on it fairly recently.

  • six4seven

    YES!! The iPhone’s typing sucks bahls!!! I’m actually so sick of it, that I’m selling my iPhone 4 for a Blackberry 9780. Yes, I want my handheld to be efficient for writing long emails and texting.

    I love iOS so will be getting the iPad 2 to fill my needs.

    But the iphone’s text input is garbage to say the least.

  • szdifjcnkvfj

    Sype isnt coming to the iPhone, but if we are lucky, it could come to Cydia cuz it dealswith other apps.

  • Takean

    What ever happened to that mod someone months and months ago that was working on an iPhone keyboard mod that adjusted to your typing habits. It looked amazing and the guy even showed video of him typing with awful misspellings on every word and it auto corrected it all perfectly because it learned the way he holds the phone when typing. Haven’t heard a thing else about that.

    • MrA

      iOS does exactly this.

  • Cam

    @MrA,

    Alex is 100% correct. You either haven’t used Swype or didn’t give it the 10 minutes time it takes to get used to it. I understand that everyone has their preferences and that’s great, but saying “nobody” is with Swype is faster than you just makes you sound like an idiot.

    Swype is an amazing keyboard. I personly use both Android and iOS, and for me Swype is my keyboard of choice. That being said it isn’t perfect. I’m not a fan of its number input layout at all.

    • MrA

      That’s right. Nobody.

  • Michael T. Simpson

    Yes That Would Be AWESOME!

  • jusman

    The virtual keyboard on any touch device is crap. Especially on the iphone’s small screen.

    I came from a blackberry and i rarely write lengthy emails on my iPhone.

    I definitely think they need to revamp text input.

  • Angela

    I just watched and read an article about 8pen…. I’m not saying I hate my iPhone keyboard all I want is to try it… I just want a choice I guess. I agree I would love to see the current keyboard get an upgrade to fix the number and symbol issue. I’m getting use to it now, but would just like something different. The touch and response of the current keyboard is by far the best I’ve used.

  • Efrain

    I think once they recreate itypefstr it’ll be ok again, cause that one worked well. But I will say compared to swype, nothing holds a candle. Swype is a great keyboard

  • james016

    I’d like to see Swype as an option for the iPhone. What they should do first is show the correct case on the keyboard as standard rather than me having to download ShowCase.

  • Mark

    I’ve thought about this feature since I saw the commercial were the world record was beaten with time to spare.
    Next to the bite sms it would work so great also I want that Pre feature were you write and then select what app you want to use it with.
    I wish i could use my beejive the same way than bitesms!

  • Spike

    BlindType (youtube.com/blindtype) was supposed to be released on the iPhone, but since Google has bought it in late 2010, no news…

  • Takean

    That’s what I was talking about earlier above. Blindtype. I know the iOS can do some of what I discussed above but the demo of blindtype was much more superior than what we have on the iOS. Anyway, guess we won’t be seeing it then :p

  • Sb

    Fuck autocorrect.

    • MrA

      Tell us how you really feel :p