SmoothCursor brings a beautifully animated cursor to iOS

By Jeff Benjamin on Apr 18, 2015

When I first heard about SmoothCursor, I didn’t imagine that it would have much of an effect on the typing experience. While it’s true that it doesn’t have any real bearing on the actual input process, it definitely has a noticeable look from a visual standpoint.

SmoothCursor borrows the same cursor movement popularized by Microsoft Office. Instead of a cursor with well-defined keyframes of animation, the cursor features smoothly animated motion as you type.  Read More

 

Giffage is a third-party keyboard with style

By Jeff Benjamin on Apr 16, 2015

As many of you know, I’ve been quite bummed by the third-party keyboards on iOS 8. Many of them are underwhelming, and not all of the blame rests with developers. Apple’s implementation has left lot to be desired, but many of the third-party keyboard developers have done themselves no favors.

Needless to say, there hasn’t been one keyboard that I use on my iPhone outside of the stock English keyboard, and the Emoji keyboard, but that recently changed. Giffage (free) is a brand new third-party release that brings a GIF keyboard to iOS 8.

I understand that Giffage isn’t the first third-party keyboard to do GIFs, as I’ve used some of the alternatives. What I can say is that Giffage is one of the best designed and easiest-to-use third party keyboards that I’ve yet to try. The implementation is well thought out, and goes beyond the call of duty when it comes to sweating the little details. Read More

 

Fleksy Keyboard goes free for a week, gains millions of GIFs via partnership with Riffsy

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 14, 2015

Fleksy Keyboard, one of the first and most popular software keyboards for iOS 8 devices, has gone free for a week. The app usually retails for 99 cents a pop and has never gone free since its App Store debut as an iOS 8-compatible downloadable software keyboard in September of last year.

In addition, Fleksy’s latest update has rechristened the app as ‘Fleksy + GiF Keyboard’ to reflect its newly gained integration with Riffsy’s GIF Keyboard for iOS. The resulting app now gives you access to millions of GIFs on top of Fleksy’s existing emoji support and perks like advanced keyboard capabilities with gestures and much more. Read More

 

Apple quietly purchased Dryft keyboard app last year

By Cody Lee on Apr 8, 2015

Apple quietly purchased Dryft, a startup that develops keyboard apps, according to a new report from TechCrunch. The site says that the acquisition happened sometime last year, but the financial terms of the deal are still not known.

Dryft, who TechCrunch notes was a finalist in its 2013 Disrupt startup battlefield competition, gained notoriety for its custom mobile keyboard that would only appear when the user placed their fingers on their device’s display. Read More

 

NoKeyPop: remove the keyboard pop-up animation when typing

By Jeff Benjamin on Apr 7, 2015

Since touch screen keyboards lack the movement of physical keyboards, software keyboards use other tricks to help you to see how your touches interact with the on screen keyboard. One of the tricks often employed is the simple keyboard animation. Animations, combined with haptic feedback and sound, can provide enough sense of touch that typing is made easier

But what if you removed the keyboard animations altogether? What would the typing experience be like then? NoKeyPop is a jailbreak tweak that lets you do just that… Read More

 

SHARKK’s wireless keyboard case for iPad Air 2 rotates for portrait or landscape mode

By Lory Gil on Apr 6, 2015

I love using keyboard cases for my iPad. I highly recommend that anyone with a tablet invest in a keyboard case. It increases productivity significantly, while acting as a protective covering for your device.

SHARKK has a wireless keyboard case specifically made for the iPad Air 2 that features a rotating mount, so you can use your tablet in landscape or portrait mode without missing a beat. Read More

 

BoxWave Keyboard Buddy turns your iPhone 6 into a Sidekick

By Lory Gil on Apr 4, 2015

Although Apple has made the screen larger on its latest line of iPhones, the keyboard is still small and difficult to use. One easy solution to that problem is an external keyboard.

The BoxWave Keyboard Buddy is a case for your iPhone 6 with a keyboard attached to the back. Simply slide out the keyboard tray and you’ll be typing away like a 14-year-old girl on a T-Mobile Sidekick. Read More

 

Images of refreshed Apple Wireless Keyboard with backlit keys pulled from Online Apple Store

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 24, 2015

Images of Apple’s Wireless Keyboard with backlit keys and a power button were removed today from the Online Apple Store, suggesting the product has prematurely leaked or isn’t ready for prime time yet.

Yesterday, the Online Apple Store in Czech Republic and Hungary got refreshed with new images showing a power button on the $69 keyboard and controls for adjusting the brightness of the backlight. Read More

 

New Apple Wireless keyboard with backlit keys appears on Apple’s online store

By Jake Smith on Mar 23, 2015

An updated version of Apple’s wireless keyboard appeared on Apple’s Czech Republic online store on Monday, most notably packing a backlit keyboard.

Apple hasn’t updated the product description noting the backlit feature, however the F5 and F6 keys indicate dimming and brightening functionality like found on Apple’s laptop line. The keys have also seen a slight redesign, and the CD eject button has been replaced with a power button.  Read More

 

Review: Das Keyboard 4 Professional for Mac

By Jeff Benjamin on Mar 21, 2015

I’ve been using the Das Keyboard Professional Model S for the last two years, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed typing on this mechanical keyboard. If you do any sort of long form typing on a regular basis, then having a mechanical keyboard can make a huge difference in your life.

After typing on my MacBook’s chiclet keyboard for years, I began to develop problems with severe wrist pain. Although it was never officially diagnosed, I’m pretty sure that I suffered from some sort of repetitive stress injury, which made it excruciatingly painful to type for extended periods of time. Needless to say, having a mechanical keyboard has alleviated 99% of these issues, and I can never see myself going back to using the MacBook’s chiclet keyboard full time.

Earlier this month, Das Keyboard released an updated keyboard for Mac with new features and functionality. The Das Keyboard 4 Professional for Mac, as it is called, brings a similar typing experience to the table. Is it something you should consider if you’re in the market for a new keyboard? Should previous Das Keyboard owners upgrade? Have a look at our video review and walkthrough for the answer. Read More

 

Apple patent outlines virtual Mac keyboard with haptic feedback

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 19, 2015

The United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) on Thursday published an interesting Apple patent application for a Mac keyboard that looks like an oversized Magic Trackpad accessory, but with virtual keys in place of the physical ones providing haptic feedback, similar to the new MacBook’s Force Touch trackpad.

Filed in November 2014 and titled ‘Method and Apparatus for Localization of Haptic Feedback,’ the invention outlines a keyboard with a flat, touch-sensitive input surface incorporating multiple actuators to provide tactile feedback. Read More

 

How to tab between dialogue box buttons on Mac

By Jeff Benjamin on Mar 15, 2015

The tabbing experience on OS X might feel a little gimped if you’re coming from a Windows machine. That’s because, by default, OS X makes it so that the option to move keyboard focus between all controls with the Tab key is disabled.

Instead, tabbing is only possible between text boxes and lists using the default setting. In this tutorial, I’ll show you two quick and easy ways to change this setting and enable a much-improved tabbing experience on your Mac. Read More

 

Apple fixes long-standing keyboard issue in iOS 8.3 beta

By Cody Lee on Mar 13, 2015

It appears Apple plans to fix a long-standing keyboard issue which caused users to inadvertently tap the period key when aiming for the space bar in Safari. As noted by MacRumors, beta versions of iOS 8.3 feature a design change that should resolve the problem.

In 8.3, Apple has made the space bar longer on the keyboard that pops up when inputting text in Safari’s omnibar, and the ‘Go’ button shorter. This should make it less likely for users to encounter accidental period key presses when typing out their web searches. Read More

 

Fleksy Keyboard gains Tips and Color Pops extensions, three new themes and more

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 12, 2015

Fleksy, a popular 99-cent keyboard for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices running iOS 8 or later, has received another newsworthy update following its equally massive Valentine’s Day release.

A dedicated Tips Extension shows you helpful tips throughout the app while a new Color Pops Extension lets you customize the colors of your key pops (disable them completely via a transparancy slider). Read More

 

Hero Keyboard wants to reinvent the way you type

By Lory Gil on Feb 24, 2015

Although our brains and fingers are most familiar with the QWERTY layout of a keyboard, it really isn’t such a smart design when you think about it. I mean, how often do you use the letter Q?

HERO Keyboard is a third-party keyboard app that completely redesigns the layout of letters so that the most-used are conveniently located in a center circle with secondary and tertiary letters in the outer layers. Read More

 

Fleksy’s Valentine’s Day update brings Hotkey extensions, animated themes and more

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 13, 2015

Yesterday, Fleksy announced a major Valentine’s Day themed update to its record-smashing software keyboard for the iPhone and iPad.

Fleksy Keboard 5.2, a free update for existing users, brings out a myriad of new features, including animated themes through an Energy Theme Pack, a slew of customizable Extensions, Valentine hearts animations upon each key press, custom phrases or email addresses and much more. Read More

 

Meet Phorm, an iPad mini case that enhances your virtual keyboard with tactile keys

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 12, 2015

What if Apple’s virtual keyboard could give you tactical feedback on each key press? This very idea has led Tactus Technology to embark on a project that’d result in a special case that magically morphs into a tactile keyboard buttons which raise up directly on your iPad mini’s screen.

You’re still using your on-screen keyboard, it just has a tactile feel to it now. Based on microfluidic technology, the Phorm, as they’re calling it, consists of an iPad mini case and a screen protector which does all the magic.

A huge slider on the back of the case lets you dynamically add or remove fluid-filled keyboard buttons that give you tactile feedback. “The anxiety of auto-correct disappears, your productivity increases,” says Tactus.

So, is the Phorm but a gimmick? Read on. Read More

 

Keyboard Accio makes switching between preferred keyboards quicker

By Jeff Benjamin on Feb 10, 2015

Do you find the iOS keyboard switching mechanism to be cumbersome? If so, then Keyboard Accio is a new free jailbreak tweak that’s worth checking out. It makes the globe key used for switching between keyboards toggle between the first and second keyboards configured in your keyboard settings. This provides a way for users to quickly switch between the two most preferred keyboards. Read More

 

SwiftKey gains iPad gesture typing, 800+ predictive emojis, key click sounds and more

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 5, 2015

SwiftKey, the popular third-party keyboard for the iPhone and iPad, has received a nice refresh today. The new version brings out support for eleven more languages, enables gesture typing on iPads, implements a new picker which provides access to more than 800 emoticons along with emoji predictions, adds the option to accompany each tap of a key with a click sound and other goodies. Read More

 

Pasithea: a new jailbreak tweak that saves pasteboard history

By Jeff Benjamin on Feb 3, 2015

Pasithea is a jailbreak tweak that lets you manage pasteboard history on your iOS device. It works by replacing the Tibetan keyboard in iOS, and presents it as its own keyboard, which functions as a place to access previous items saved to the pasteboard. If you’re someone who uses copy and paste on a regular basis, and desires a better way to manage pasteboard history, then Pasithea is a tweak worth checking out. Read More

 
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