If you like resting a palm on your desk and tapping your fingers when you’re thinking or when you’re bored, then this ‘keyboard’ might be for you.
It’s not a physical keyboard in the sense of the word ‘board’ but it performs that function just like your smartphone’s keyboard does. However, it’s not a screen keyboard either.
It’s called the Tap keyboard: a wireless wearable device which is worn on one hand with loops into which you slot your fingers. After syncing with your smartphone, tablet or computer, letters can then be typed out by tapping your fingers on your desk or whatever surface you’re using them on.
And apart from your desk, it does quite well on some soft surfaces.
Wait. There are 26 letters in the English alphabet. And there’ll surely be other characters to be typed apart from the letters of the alphabet, so how do just five fingers input the wide collection of letters and other characters.
How the Tap keyboard works
According to Tap Systems Inc., the makers of the tap keyboard, it takes about five hours of practice to get comfortable with it, although one hour can make you get the hang of it. That sounds like a lot of time and work, but then it takes just as much time or even more to be familiar and fast with the QWERTY keyboard.
To make things easier on users, the company has designed a few apps for training owners of the keyboard.
When in use, each of the five fingers produces a single vowel. The thumb types the letter A on a single tap while the other fingers type out the remaining English vowels chronologically.
To type out other letters, the Tap keyboard uses simple finger combinations for alphabets that see more frequent use, and slightly more complex ones for those that don’t get used very frequently. For instance it takes a tap of two fingers to type N, T, L and S which are the most commonly used consonants. The thumb and forefinger tapped together on a surface, produce letter N.
So basically, the tap keyboard employs a tap of various combinations of the five fingers. Mathematically, the maximum number of different combinations possible for five fingers, is 120. So 120 characters can be typed out very easily by this method alone. The tap keyboard also employs a few other gestures for typing, which add to its functionality.
Overall, the Tap keyboard is not a bad device. That’s if you do not find it impressive. The accompanying Android and iOS apps for learning how to use the keyboard are quit commendable, as is the device’s left hand functionality.
Tap is going out for a price of $150. And Oh, it’s able to work as a mouse too.