There's a growing trend that screams for larger mobile device displays. The first five inch screen have been firmly established in the market for a while now, and there's a whole bunch of tablets floating around as well.
Actually using these devices is proving to be counter-intuitively more and more circuitous, and especially tablets prove to be catchy when it comes to typing, even when using two hands, seeing as you need to hold the darn thing with at least one hand.
Developers have come up with an alternative: splitting the keyboard on the left and right part of the screen is meant to make for ease and comfort of use.
Thumb Keyboard (Phone/Tablet) was one of the very first apps that supported this unusual layout—and this week you guys can download it for only EUR 0.99 as our app of the week.
What can the app actually do ? Find out below.
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|Reviewed version||Latest version|
Features & Use
-Samsung Galaxy Nexus 4.1.1
-Acer Iconia A500 mit 4.0.3 Custom ROM
Thumb Keyboard, like most keyboard apps, comes with a practical setup assistant to help activate the keyboard and set it as your standard. This means you need make only a few clicks and you're good to start typing away using Thumb Keyboard.
But before you get cracking you will need to select one of the nine available layouts:
- Phone: Standard Layout
- Phone: Split - Large Layout
- Phone: Split - Compact Layout
- Phone/Tablet: 5" Layout
- Phone/Tablet: 5" Alt Layout
- Tablet: 7" Split - Normal Layout
- Tablet: 7" Split - Large Layout
- Tablet: 10"/9" Layout
- Custom Landscape/Portrait combinations
As you may have gathered, the app provides numerous layouts for both landscape and portrait formats which can be set separately. But this is not the only advantage this keyboard has to offer: the settings options are vast and make for optimal configurations ranging from feedback settings, different themes (27 in total) and options to set the size, all the the way to different auto-complete options.
The keyboard has a few nice little features, too. For instance, you may save a few text building blocks and insert them later with just one click.
There are also buttons that let you change the layout quickly, insert special email addresses and even some empty keys that may be filled with text, smileys or other functions.
One feature that too few apps provide: a backup/restore function, and I am pleased to say that Thumb Keyboard comes with this integrated feature. This means that you can type easy knowing that there's an option for restoring text.
Thumb Keyboard (Phone/Tablet) is a very well made app that provides lots of settings options, be it design, functionality or configuration related.
What really sets it apart from other apps – e.g. SwiftKey – are the many layouts which you can pick and choose from. Split screen keyboard for your phone? No problem. A more classic layout for your tablet? Easy. There's a one-hand keyboard that's displayed on one side only available for larger smartphones.
More great features: text auto-complete and the backup function.
There are very few drawbacks: auto correct is not quite as good as the SwiftKey one. But aside from this the app has virtually no weak points.
In the end, it’s going to take you a while to figure out if it’s worth replacing your regular keyboard with this new one. That’s why it makes sense to buy Thumb Keyboard on the AndroidPIT App Center with its 24-hour return policy.
Screen & Controls
There's not much to say about Thumb Keyboard (Phone/Tablet) in this regard. There are a lot of layouts, themes and other design options available, meaning you may adjust the app to your liking.
The drawback here is that there are lots of options but they are poorly structured, making this part of the app feel somewhat messy. The developers could make a few improvements here by setting up categories without too much outlay.
Speed & Stability
Thumb Keyboard (Phone/Tablet) performed well on the Nexus we used for testing, as well as on the Iconia Tablet.
The application did not crash and the speed was good.
Thumb Keyboard (Phone/Tablet) usually costs EUR. 1.92 but it's our app of the week this week (10/01/12 – 10/07/12) and can be dowbloaded from the App Center for only EUR 0.99.
Keep in mind that our App Center has a 24-hour return policy, which should give you plenty of time to try out the keyboard and see if it's a good fit. If it isn't, just return it .
A 7 day trial version is also available.