I’m totally used to the iPad’s soft keyboard, but when I go back to my iPod touch it drives me crazy. I miss the letters, I hit enter when I mean to hit shift, and I generally get angry. I would not, however, buy a phone with a keyboard ever again.
But I might consider the Spike, or more likely, the Spike 2. Both are iPhone cases with flip-open keyboards, but the Spike 2 improves on the formula by getting out of the way when you don’t need it.
The Spikes use something the designer calls “TypeSmart,” which uses neither plugs nor Bluetooth to connect. It’s not mentioned on the Kickstarter page, but this must mean that they are just pressing the on-screen keys below. Whatever gets the job done.
This simple approach keeps the prices down. The Spike 1 will go for around $30-$35, and the Spike 2 for $55, similar to the prices for non-keyboard cases.
The Spike 2’s QWERTY is the handiest looking. It swings in from a hinge on the right size and clips over the bottom half of the screen, so you can pretend you are using a BlackBerry. When you’re not typing, you just flip it around the back where it clips in and stays out of the way. As the keyboard is just 4mm thick, you don’t end up with anything too clunky.
I guess there are still some people around who need hard keys, and this solution looks as well as any I have seen. The Kickstarter project starts today.