Typing on Smartphones is Faster Than Ever

When the concept of a touch screen keyboard was first introduced, a lot of people thought that it would be a failed experiment. The reason that they thought this was because of the fact that having a physical mechanism through which you could type things out was considered to be a lot more intuitive and would therefore facilitate faster typing all in all.

As you probably know quite well, touch screen keyboards became the norm in spite of all of the naysayers, although it is fair to say that typing on these touch screens was not quite as fast as what could be achieved by using a physical keyboard. This meant that while people were using touch screen keyboards for things like texting and social media, if they needed to actually type something out quickly like an article or an essay they would probably end up doing so using a physical keyboard of some sort since typing speeds on actual keyboards did exceed what you could achieve through touch based keyboards.

However, things are changing quite rapidly, and after a few advances have been made in the field of touch screen keyboards typing has slowly started to become almost as fast as it would be on a physical keyboard. The advancements that have been made have made up for the imprecise nature of touch screens, making it so that the typos that inevitably end up occurring are fixed through autocorrect. People are also becoming more used to using these types of keyboards which makes them more adept at speedily typing away.

According to a research conducted in Europe, the average typing speed on a keyboard is about 50 words per minute (WPM), and with a touch screen keyboard this number is about 38 words per minute. While there is still quite a bit of difference left to cover, this does show that the typing speeds that are possible with each type of keyboard are really not all that different to one another.


Overview of WPM for different demographic factors overall and for the U.S. subsample. Significance is indicated for differences within a demographic factor. For factors with more than two groups, detailed statistics of pairwise comparisons are given in the supplementary material.

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