N8 tips & tricks: Gravity alpha version gets portrait QWERTY keyboard

One of the main complaints about the Symbian^3 OS on the Nokia N8 is lack of any QWERTY keyboard in portrait orientation. Also, while the stock landscape keyboard can be setup to work quite well, it still takes you out of the context where text is being entered so you can lose your way or enter more text than allowed (in the case of Twitter or a text message). The developer of Gravity took things into his own hands and just released an alpha version of the Gravity Twitter/Facebook/Foursquare/Google Reader software that provides its own keyboard. UPDATE: You can download the Alpha version here.

As you can see in the screenshots below, the keyboard keys have decent spacing and I was able to tap out the characters pretty well. There is no auto correction or cool keyboard features like double space for a period or auto-capitalization of the I, but at least having a QWERTY keyboard in portrait is present now. Jan Ole Suhr was also able to keep the keyboard up in a way that we could see the context and track the number of characters entered. You can see the keyboard is there for portrait and landscape orientations. I do not see a way to go back to Swype or another keyboard after loading up this version of Gravity, but that is fine for me and I prefer the keyboard he created.

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24 Comments to N8 tips & tricks: Gravity alpha version gets portrait QWERTY keyboard

dans
November 1, 2010

Sometimes you just have to shake your head at Nokia’s motives.

Arif
November 2, 2010

wondering how to get this on my phone.

El Marko
November 2, 2010

Wow. Another Nokia software shaming. The folks at mobilways.de are forced to create a portrait QWERTY keyboard, for their own app.

I imagine the world in Nokia’s future, when app developers for Symbian must supply basic system features – such as a keyboard – in order for their apps to function reasonably well, on Nokia’s phones.

Imagine if Nokia’s hardware was as bad: App developers might have to ship an extra button and some double-sided sticky tape, so it could be stuck to the outside of the phone. . .

Honestly, when will Nokia just admit it needs to outsource all its software development, both on the phone and on the PC/Mac?

Nokia: Your.Software.Bites.

Alex
November 2, 2010

New gravity works for nokia5530?

APS
November 2, 2010

I’ve seen quite a lot of talk on Nokia fan sites saying that an official QWERTY portrait keyboard is on its way.

When I owned my Samsung i8910 I always preferred the T9 keyboard since I could enter text faster with one hand than most can with two because just having the 9 big keys made it much easier to hit the target and means your fingers need to move less. If I owned a N8 I’d probably still want to use the T9 but i can see why for things like entering a URL in a browser it would be better to have a qwerty keyboard.

Shaun
November 2, 2010

@alex – it’s Symbian^3 only so far.

Good on Jan Ole. The OS keyboard is awful in either orientation. I just can’t believe anyone at Nokia thinks that taking over the entire screen so you can’t see what you’re typing into is a good idea.

Dan
November 2, 2010

Universally, Symbian’s implementation of its keyboards disappoints. No one want’s his view covered. On the plus side, however, It does give you an unrestricted space to type on when filling forms or data blanks, which is okay until your text entry exceeds the allocated space and you have no way of panning through the text entry. The best implementation was iOS’ and I think there is nothing wrong if nokia takes inspiration from this.

Also the QWERTY keyboard’s aesthetics needs to be updated bigtime. I don’t get the straightly filed buttons which compresses most of the letters on the left side.

Parampreet
November 3, 2010

I downloaded and installed the demo version from the website, but can’t find the option to activate the keyboard anywhere. What am I missing here? I’m running an Nokia N8…

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Briepe
December 6, 2010

Просматриваю сообщения у вас на сайте уже какоето время! И могу сказать сразу что буду продолжать это делать :)

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