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  #1  
Old 10-06-2009, 10:50 AM
slitchfield slitchfield is offline
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The fastest smartphone in the west? Text input speeds compared

Three years ago I wrote an article comparing text input speeds using various devices and form factors from the PDA and smartphone world. Here's the update, with some modern devices (including the iPhone 3G, HTC Touch Pro 2 and Nokia N97) included and tabled, plus a rogue's gallery showing Communicator keyboards through the ages. Am I obsessing too much? Is raw text input speed that important to you? Comments welcomed.

Read on in the full article.

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Old 10-06-2009, 11:14 AM
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rleader rleader is offline
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Excellent article, as are most found on allaboutsymbian! Is there time for you to include the 'Omnia' i8910 HD (S60 3.x fifth edition) in your table? I still have my Psion 5MX 8mb (not 8gb like the i8910!) almost pristine, back in its box. Yes, I did a lot on that keyboard in its day... Cheers!

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Old 10-06-2009, 11:16 AM
nisched
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27-28 wpm

first comment? we'll see.

not sure I approve of 27-28 wpm translating from 200-150 words you could conveniently write per day. that feels wrong.

also, I remember you don't really like word correction algorithms but that iphone goes quite quick and completely depends on auto-correction. personally I can't stand the iphone for typing but my trusty E70 is great. on t9 I hate stumbling over complex words its not that slow for the odd text but very stumbly on unusual words auto-correction is like that too.

cheers,
dj

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Old 10-06-2009, 11:19 AM
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nope

damn

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Old 10-06-2009, 11:34 AM
slitchfield slitchfield is offline
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@nisched: No, I LOVE the iPhone's auto-correction. What I don't like is 'prediction' software, where you have to keep looking up at the screen to see what word is being suggested and then decide whether to accept it and then have to do the appropriate actions to do so - it would have been quicker to just type it etc.

The iPhone does this properly. It spots what you MEANT to type and corrects it more or less silently. I can't see why Nokia doesn't do the same for input on its phones, it's really not that hard to do.
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Old 10-06-2009, 11:50 AM
sapporobaby sapporobaby is offline
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Hi Steve,

Doesn't the E75 more or less correct the spelling as you go? It seems similar to the iPhone when deciding what you meant. I do however, have to look at the screen from time to time to make sure it spelled what I wanted.

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Old 10-06-2009, 12:00 PM
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T9 may be a bit slower for new words but once you've entered the words you use the most day to day it can be very fast (for a keypad). I can type a quick message without looking at my phone till it's done and then I only look at it for a sec to check it's not predicted the wrong words

I've got a N95 8GB and just gone on a type test web site and got between 20 and 25wpm from a couple of tests. Don't know what's up with Steve's thumbs!

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Old 10-06-2009, 12:05 PM
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E71

Hi Steve,

What about E71?

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Old 10-06-2009, 12:05 PM
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How many comfortable words?

It must depend very much on what you get used to. I used PalmOS devices with Graffiti for the longest time and was proficient in the script - quick and comfortable to use.

My E71's keyboard is less comfortable to use by comparison and no quicker.

Both pale in comparison with a portable, foldable keyboard. Very few comfort issues whatsoever and easy to touch type on.

  #10  
Old 10-06-2009, 12:08 PM
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T9

Just typed it and timed it on my Nokia N82 and completed it in 55, 35 words per minute? This puts it 4th on the list. . I can type faster using T9 than I can any other method I've tried, without looking to. I'm not even that quick. Many people I know can type much faster.
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Old 10-06-2009, 12:10 PM
maartenmk maartenmk is offline
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I for one do miss prediction with word suggestion on s60. Maybe it will not help much for T9 predictive input, but for multi-tap it would surely save a lot of button-presses.
And when you write in more than one language regularly like I do, T9 language switching makes it almost not worth using.

But even with T9 on, sometimes you are just sure the phone already knows what word you are typing, and it still lets you spell it out!
Besides, it's not in the way is it? You can just ignore it if you want. With auto-correction, even a very clever system will get it wrong sometimes. Very annoying.

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Old 10-06-2009, 12:15 PM
Dynite Dynite is offline
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I completely disagree with multi-tap being the slowest.

touch screen input requires you to wait for an incredibly long time (comparitively speaking) between presses as opposed to physical buttons, especially when typing the same letter twice. (I know u can use the arrow but that's hardly any quicker)

Also considering most people have been using T9 or multitap for the past 10 years, I very much doubt it's the worst of all; in fact it's probably one of the fastest.


Also, no E71 on the list? Tsk.

  #13  
Old 10-06-2009, 12:32 PM
slitchfield slitchfield is offline
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"Doesn't the E75 more or less correct the spelling as you go? It seems similar to the iPhone when deciding what you meant. I do however, have to look at the screen from time to time to make sure it spelled what I wanted."

Do you know, I'd forgotten about that. And presumably on the E71 and E63 and N97 as well. Partly because it doesn't work very well, of course. E.g. Mistype 'on' as 'om' and get 'omnipotence'. Yeeeeess..... that matches my keystrokes, I don't think.... Better than nothing in many cases but world away from the intelligence behind the iPhone's auto-corrective aids.

"Don't know what's up with Steve's thumbs!"

Well, admittedly I'm not the fastest texter in the world, but note that my test text included several things which trip up predictive text. Try my test test and time yourself, please!

"Just typed it and timed it on my Nokia N82 and completed it in 55, 35 words per minute"

You have my respect, sir!
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  #14  
Old 10-06-2009, 12:35 PM
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I can assure you that I'm around 4 times faster with the QWERTY keyboard on my E90 than I am with the numeric keypad.

Perhaps the problem is I'm a 40 something man and not a 12 year old girl. This means I have big hands and spend my working day writing emails on a full sized keyboard, not texting celeb chat under my desk.

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Old 10-06-2009, 12:36 PM
maartenmk maartenmk is offline
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standard WPM

Steve,

I looked at an online typing test, and it mentioned that WPM is actually based not on real words, but on standardised word-units, each 5 keystrokes, spaces included.

That would make your text 35.4 WPM-units long (and it makes your typing speed look more impressive!). Or 34, if the quotation marks and the "and" were not part of your actual test, that is not entirely clear to me.
 

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