Nokia’s Virtual Keyboard Is Not a Touchscreen

Nokia’s Virtual Keyboard Is Not a Touchscreen


With so many touchscreen-enabled mobile phones on the market today, there is no shortage of virtual keyboards that get us to tap on those displays. From the HTC Touch to the Apple iPhone, people are tapping on screens across the country. Unfortunately, these thumb-based inputs just aren’t as good as typing on a good-sized QWERTY keyboard.

Nokia is looking to overcome this conundrum with their unique “mobile device with virtual keyboard” patent application. Their keyboard makes use of the phone’s integrated camera, getting you to “type” on your desk or table, replicating the view of the keyboard on the screen. It’s quite the strange application, but it makes use of the same philosophy as those “projector” keyboards.

Interestingly, the phone can use the mic to recognize when you tap the table, translating the sound of a tap into a virtual key press. There may also be some sort of cradle to hold the handset steady while you’re composing that email. The patent application can be viewed here (warning: PDF link).

On a side note, am I the only one who sees a problem with seeing half a keyboard at a time?