2013.03 Tip: Type2Phone

During this month's presentation on the iPad user interface ("I Am Not a Mac"), I mentioned how much I detested the iPad's virtual keyboard, and one of the other members, fonder of the iPad than I am, pointed out quite correctly that I could get an actual physical keyboard that could wirelessly talk to the iPad using a Bluetooth connection.

All well and good, I remarked, but this runs afoul of 2 things:
(1) A major benefit of the iPad is portability due to compactness, and if I need a separate keyboard just to use it properly, that benefit gets shot in the head.
(2) Extra hardware costs money.

But something has recently come to my attention that resolves the 2nd issue and kind of addresses the 1st. It's Type2Phone, a $5 iPad app that lets you use your existing Mac keyboard (which you've presumably already paid for) to type directly to the iPad. That beats the pants off of shelling out $70 to $100 for a wireless keyboard.

How does that affect portability? Well, it doesn't, really, but presumably you'd only be using this app when you're at home, which is where your keyboard has to be in order to keep your Mac company, so you wouldn't have Hardware Item #2 bogging you down when you're out on the town. For that, you'd still be stuck with the icky virtual keyboard.

Or Siri. But carrying on long conversations with Siri isn't possible, and even just trying to do so gets you lots of strange looks. Fewer uneasy glances than 20 years ago, when you'd be mistaken for a CMI street person, but still ...

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