To Swype or Not to Swype

To swype or not to swype. That is the question a lot of people ask themselves when dealing with smartphones on a daily basis. It is not only a question of convenience but also of divisions between the old-school approach of tapping and new-school method of swyping. Things get even more complicated when you count the issue of autocorrection into the equation.

I’ve been a faithful member of the old school. Swyping once tried with Google keyboard on my old Android felt fancy and unreliable. One has to not only see the letters quickly enough sometimes shaded by one’s fingers but make sure that autocorrect doesn’t produce funny if not totally inappropriate results. Well, the other way around actually – quite appropriate instead of inappropriate ones if you know what I mean.

CM Keyboard for Android
CM Keyboard for Android

Then I found CM Keyboard for Android. It was the best. Firstly, it has a numeric row on top of the letters and you don’t have to constantly switch panes, which might become quite annoying. Secondly, I got instantly used to a neat feature of producing a comma on double-tapping the space bar. It made things so much better and my typing so much more comfortable. On top of that, it was very light-weight in terms of file size.

Now I am on Windows Phone and the only choice here seems to be the default keyboard. Thus, I am back to switching between the alphabet and numeric/special characters panes. No commas on double-tapping anything – I need to press the period and then choose between major sentence punctuation marks by swiping (not swyping, see) to the right one. You’ve guessed it – this is slower than double-tapping.

Windows Phone Keyboard
Windows Phone Keyboard

But there is one more change here. More often than not I find myself swyping than typing. I still don’t easily see all the characters on the right behind my moving finger, but mini pausing doesn’t seem to bother the swyping system. I still type from time to time. Yet now I don’t see any major difference in either speed or convenience between the old-school and the new-school methods. I am being slowly converted to the new faith.

The issue of autocorrect, however, is unresolved. It still changes things sometimes. Sometimes even right after I tap “send” so that it shows the correct word but sends the wrong one. Sometimes, it is being insistent no matter if I type or swype. It even managed to change quite an appropriate word into another one, while leaving an inappropriate one intact (if you know what I mean). Surely you can sometimes choose between suggestions and even add words to the dictionary, but isn’t the purpose of a smartphone keyboard to let you type/swype quickly, not enlarge someone’s (or should I say, something’s) vocabulary?

If I cannot yet say that I have answered the question from the headline positively, it feels like I am on my way there. Are you?


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