Quick-Keys virtual keyboard updated for better performance and customization | webOS Nation

Quick-Keys virtual keyboard updated for better performance and customization

by Derek Kessler Tue, 13 Nov 2012 9:07 pm EST

Quick-Keys virtual keyboard updated for better performance and customization

Several months ago we first touched on the Quick-Keys Keyboard virtual keyboard app for webOS smartphones. The app by D Gardner was more than a little rough by then, but the concept seemed solid: throw in an easy-to-toggle virtual keyboard in the notification area and you won't have to open up the phone to send a quick message or what-have-you. Problem is that it was slow and clunkily-implemented.

Fast forward to the end of the year and Quick-Keys has seen a number of welcome improvements. For one, you can now pick themes for your keyboard, changing the coloration to suit your tastes and/or mood. The keyboard has also gained a staple of the phone-sized keyboard with big floating pop-up letters that appear as you type. There are also more than a hundred new special characters available, some of which while supported by webOS aren't available through more tradition input methods (i.e. the physical keyboard).

There are a few other small improvements and additions (like the ability to type in bubble letters, if that's you're thing), but what's caught our attention is that Quick-Keys has been updated to allow you to type in a more traditional sense. Before Quick-Keys operated on a word-by-word basis - you type a word and it appears in the compose bar above the keyboard but isn't transferred to the app's text field until you hit the space bar or add some punctuation. It's a little frustrating coming from physical and virtual keyboards that put up the letters as you type them.

Quick-Keys has a new option, though it's disabled by default - that allows you to type and have the letters be inserted into the app's text field as you go, just like you would expect. The only problem is that the delete key in Quick-Keys only works in the keyboard composer, not in your app. Given the lack of autocorrect functionality, that can be a little frustrating, but it is what it is, and there's not anything that can be done to get around that.

All told, we're glad to see that Quick-Keys Keyboard has received some much-needed updates. There's functionality that's impeded by the design of webOS, but to have a virtual keyboard on your webOS smartphone, well, you're not going to find many other options than this $1.25 app.