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Apple Opens iOS to Third Party Keyboards… How About BlackBerry 10?

Apple iOS keyboard Swiftkey

One of the things I have been asking BlackBerry product managers to do for years is allow third party developers to create alternative keyboards for full touch BlackBerry devices. BlackBerry is already leaning on SwiftKey’s word prediction technology in the native BlackBerry 10 keyboard but I know quite a few of you are craving gesture typing. Keyboards like Swype and SwiftKey have been making a splash on Android for awhile with their easy gesture keyboards. BlackBerry 10’s keyboard is pretty sweet but I always vote for more options.

Apple made a huge announcement today by opening up iOS 8.0 to third party keyboards like Swype and SwiftKey. With Apple being the ultimate walled garden it is unusual to learn that iOS users will have more options than BlackBerry users for a key feature. For physical keyboard devices this will not make much of a difference but many times I wish I could gesture type on my Z30 without having to flick up words.

What do you think? Will BlackBerry open up the keyboard on BlackBerry 10 to third party options? Or better yet will BlackBerry build in a gesture typing option beyond word flicking? Let us know what you think!

PS: What do you guys think of Apple copying BlackBerry’s “Quick Reply” on iOS 8.0?

4 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. would be a great decision to open up for 3rd party keyboards.

    besides the virtual keyboards BB10 also must open up for physical keyboard layouts. using great Z30 active USB Hub with USB-wireless keyboards doesn’t work international if you cannot type ‘München’ because BB10 recognizes all physical (BT or USB) keyboards as QWERTY only.

  2. yeah, the Quick reply thing they are copying from us.. till Ios8 Blackberry will be way ahead on it own action by introducing new features which Apple will adapt in their IOS10 :P

  3. I really like the word flicking so I don’t have to complete typing words, and it works amazingly well with one thumb!

    I’m not sure if gesture typing like Swype will improve things much, especially on larger screens where your thumb will have to traverse a great deal of real estate without coming off the screen.

    Clearly, I think the future is in voice-to-text, text-to-voice and voice commands – going hands-free is a big deal! This is where BlackBerry and QNX should be investing heavily.

    • Absolutely! The BlackBerry keyboard, unlike the iPhone keyboard works great! I look at these new iPhone keyboard downloads for the as option B & C: if option A doesn’t work, try option B or C.

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