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System and Method for Increased Virtual Soft Keyboard Entry Efficiency

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000200873D
Publication Date: 2010-Oct-27
Document File: 3 page(s) / 85K

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The IP.com Prior Art Database


Disclosed is a method to improve user accuracy and efficiency with soft keyboards on mobile devices. The method takes into account the known order of letter frequency. The user has the option to disable uncommon letters.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

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System and Method for Increased Virtual Soft Keyboard Entry Efficiency

A mobile device with limited space on the screen for icons and content is also likely to have a small physical keyboard or an even smaller soft keyboard. The keys are so close together that a user can easily press an unintended key. (Figure 1) This typically results in false input recognition on the behalf of the device.

Figure 1: Keys on a small keyboard

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Some solutions to this problem help reduce the number of errors; however, not all solutions are complete and leave opportunity for further innovation. Current approaches to improving the accuracy and efficiency of typing with keyboards on mobile devices include:
• T9* - Rather than showing an entire keyboard the T9 option allows users to hit the number keys on a phone and predicts words. This can be frustrating with proper names.

• Swype** - Using this option, a user leaves their finger pressed to the screen and drags it between letters, only lifting the finger between words

• Key Magnification - The device offers the ability to make keys appear larger. Enabling for the second implementation

• Auto Correction- Devices suggest words based on common words in a


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dictionary. This requires the user to continue to type in hopes that the dictionary will be smart enough to recognize the intended misspelled word.

Not all letters in the alphabet are treated equally when it comes to their appearance in words. According to Wikipedia, the order of letter frequency in the English language is as follows: e t a o i n s r h l d c u m f p g w y b v k x j q z. [1]

The disclosed solution is a method that takes into account the order of letter frequency. The freedom and flexibility offered by soft keyboards on a mobile device can make it easier for the user to hit the more commonly intended letters. The disclosed invention increases the efficiency of soft keyboard entry. The solution introduces two methods:

1. Method to disable unpopular keys

This method offers the user the option to disable uncommon letters on the keyboard. The user presses a key, menu option, makes a gesture, etc. to activate the disable function. Wh...