When I first played with PlayBook OS 2.0 with Jeff Gadway I knew the predictive text engine looked familiar. It looks like there may be a reason for that according to an Easter Egg spotted by Kevin @CrackBerry. SwiftKey X is a very popular third party keyboard for Android and the new PlayBook OS 2.0 keyboard has the same predictive wording where it suggests the name of Phil Collins and Ben Medlock (The CTO of SwiftKey).
I looked in the legal notices for PlayBook OS 2.0 and did not notice any licenses for SwiftKey X but that could mean it simply did not need a written license. What is interesting is that SwiftKey X is really just a proof of concept project for their parent company TouchType Ltd and their core technology which is their Fluency prediction engine. It could be RIM only incorporated the Fluency prediction engine and not the full SwiftKey X keyboard.
According to their product page for Fluency here are the features:
- Superior prediction performance – around 84% of words are predicted within two or fewer characters
- Intelligent next word prediction – nearly 1/3 of next words are predicted without any character entry
- Dynamic learning and personalization – predictions rapidly tailored to individual writing style and vocabulary
- Mistyping correction – reduces high input error rates made on small mobile keyboards
- Dual-language predictions – the world’s first keyboard that allows text entry in two languages simultaneously
- Fast-growing language coverage – our technology allows support for new languages to be deployed fast (14 as of Jan ‘11)
It is that last feature that really has me excited. There are quite a few PlayBook owners that are hoping for more language coverage ASAP!