OCT 02, 2019 8:14 AM PDT

Mobile Typing and Text Input Speed

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

A recent experiment sheds new light mobile typing and text input speed. Findings suggested that the typing speed on smartphones is catching up with the speed of physical keyboards with fastest speed recorded includes 85 words/minute. However, on average study participants noted they spend 6 hours a day on their phones.

"We were amazed to see that users typing with two thumbs achieved 38 words per minute on average, which is only about 25% slower than the typing speeds we observed in a similar large-scale study of physical keyboards,” says Anna Feit, a researcher at ETH Zürich, and one of the co-authors, "While one can type much faster on a physical keyboard, up to 100 wpm, the proportion of people who actually reach that is decreasing.”

Researchers have coined the term “the typing gap” in reference to the differences that exists between typing on a keyboard and a smartphone. The gap is believed to be closed soon as the increased use of smartphone typing overrides the speed of keyboard typing.

Anna Feit explains: "Such large amount of experience transfers to the development of typing skill and explains why young people, who spend more time with social media, communicating with each other, are picking up higher speeds."

Credit: www.aalto.fi

The study noted that young users will often type much faster than older participants. Antti Oulasvirta, professor at Aalto University notes that, "We are seeing a young generation that has always used touchscreen devices, and the difference to older generations that may have used devices longer, but different types, is staggering.”

"The given understanding is that techniques like word completion help people, but what we found out is that the time spent thinking about the word suggestions often outweighs the time it would take you to type the letters, making you slower overall,” says Sunjun Kim, a researcher at Aalto University.

Source: Science Daily

About the Author
  • Nouran is a scientist, educator, and life-long learner with a passion for making science more communicable. When not busy in the lab isolating blood macrophages, she enjoys writing on various STEM topics.
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