Palm Pre gets a virtual keyboard, but not from Palm


When it comes to keyboards, you just can’t make everyone happy. Provide a virtual keyboard, and people complain of inaccuracy and difficult of use. Provide a physical keyboard, and people complain because their dainty hands only have enough strength to slide out the keyboard three times a day. You’ve gotta provide both, or you’ve just given the Internet something to rant about.

Such is the case with the Palm Pre. Almost immediately after launch, the fan forums were filled with flames regarding the handsets lack of an onscreen keyboard.

Well, the Palm Pre does have a virtual keyboard; it’s just limited to a handful of fairly rare characters. The guys over at WebOS Internals have figured out a way to patch into this to add the standard QWERTY keys and make it pop up and stay open at the appropriate times, thus saving dozens of seconds per year that would otherwise be spent sliding the actual keyboard open. The patch is in a shaky state (pre-alpha) as of now, but it mostly works as intended in both portrait and landscape modes.

If you’re up for a bit of hackery for the sake of some onscreen tippity-tappin’, read this and then this for details on how to make it happen.

[Via PreCentral]