Thursday, December 22, 2011

Touchfire. Not a laptop killer for the iPad:

Touchfire is getting a lot of great publicity right now. I’m sure there’s a great market for it, and I might even try it on my iPad. But almost everyone who writes about it has obviously not tried to use it for serious writing. Critics are gushing about something it just doesn’t do.

The Touchfire is a see-through plastic overlay for the iPad with detents for your fingers. It covers the exact area that the standard keyboard appears in, and apparently it allows you to touchtype much more naturally, without preventing you from doing some normal swiping. And it can fold up out of the way when not in use.

Here’s some typical praise for the Touchfire.

I’ve done some writing on the iPad’s soft keyboard, and with the extra line of punctuation keys that iA Writer adds, it’s bearable. The problem with the iPad’s soft keyboard is that using it requires an inordinate amount of shifting. There are 35 keys on the standard iPad keyboard, compared to the over 100 keys on the real keyboard I’m using right now.

Touchfire will make simple typing easier and faster. But for those of us who want to tell you how fast the quick brown fox is running, and what sort of difficulties it’s getting into, Touchfire is not going take the iPad to some new level.

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