The University of Technology Sydney (UTS) has developed an on-screen keyboard for tablet devices, with the launch set to be extended to the iPad.
LiquidKeyboard, developed by UTS computer systems researcher, Christian Sax, enables users to use touchscreen devices with both hands, which eliminates the need for users to purchase additional hardware and preventing hand fatigue.
"Touch-typing is almost impossible for users on popular touchscreen devices," Sax said. "People cannot feel the keys and need visual clues and specialised predictive text to type successfully.
"This can be very tedious and cause terrible hand fatigue."
With the on-screen QWERTY keyboard, Sax said he hopes touch-typing will become less of an issue for users thanks to the device.
"With the new LiquidKeyboard, we have developed a virtual keyboard that adapts automatically to a user's hand physiology, such as hand size and finger position," he said.
"As soon as your first four fingers touch the surface, in one fluid motion, an entire keyboard is constructed. The system senses the pressure and position of a user's fingers on the touch screen."
Sax has been given the go-ahead to develop an iPad version of the technology, with UniQuest's manager of innovation and commercial development, Leigh Angus, saying that this will allow UTS to further improve the LiquidKeyboard.
"Providing the technology via a popular touchscreen platform will enable us to see how users respond and will help us refine the product for market," Angus said.
"The system empowers users to use all ten fingers on touch screens and will potentially attract new users who previously felt excluded."
The keyboard development comes as CIOs this week revealed their approach on iPad use in the enterprise.