By Andrew Liszewski
Touchscreen displays not only make portable devices like smartphones and MIDs easier to interact with, but they also remove the need for a dedicated keyboard, which can take up a lot of space. However, if you still prefer the tactile feel of a hardware keyboard, the compact smallQWERTY keypad from Mobience could be a reasonable compromise.
Even though its name includes the term ‘QWERTY’ the keypad doesn’t have 26 alphanumeric keys, instead it includes a 12 button numeric keypad like on a traditional phone, with 8 additional function buttons. Typing out words either requires you to hit certain buttons multiple times to get the letter you need, or hopefully it uses a software trick like T9 to predict the word with minimal presses. Unfortunately there’s no information on when this device might be available, and the fact that the Mobience website is currently just a GoDaddy pageholder doesn’t bode well for anyone wanting to get their hands on one.