HTC Bids Farewell to Physical QWERTY Keyboards on Smartphones

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News Posted: Sat, Apr 21 2012 9:26 AM
For those of you who collect outdated electronics and currently own an HTC brand smartphone with a physical QWERTY keyboard, hold onto the thing, it could very well be the last of its kind. At a press event in Seattle recently, HTC's Creative Director, Claude Zellweger, reportedly told attendees that his company is finished building smartphones with physical keyboards, or they're at least nearing the finish line.

"As a company, the QWERTY keyboard we're moving away from in general," Zellweger said, according to MobileBurn. "We feel that putting too much effort into that would take away from our devices."

Rather than focus on continuing to implement physical keyboards on certain models, HTC believes advances in haptic feedback technologies that works in conjunction with virtual planks offer more promising solutions. Equally important in HTC's decision to abandon physical keyboards is the belief that it would hamstring the company in terms of upcoming designs, especially as devices are become thinner.

Do you agree with HTC's decision or are you a staunch QWERTY advocate in the smartphone space?
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imAcpufan replied on Sat, Apr 21 2012 11:48 AM

I think having the option of a physical keypad was a nice feature. I've been using my HTC Desire for a few years, so I've gotten used to having only a virtual one. However, there are times where I could definitely use a physical keyboard, mainly for playing games.

Or maybe I'd just go with a bluetooth gamepad add-on that attaches to the phone, for times when you really need physical buttons...or dual analog thumbsticks. I'm waiting for something like the gametel pad or icontrolpad.

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AKwyn replied on Sat, Apr 21 2012 1:43 PM

No matter how hard they try, touchscreen keyboards will never replace physical keyboards; but I guess we reached a point in time where we got use to the touchscreen keyboards to render the physical keyboards obsolete.



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LBowen replied on Sat, Apr 21 2012 6:18 PM

I guess if I want the option of a physical qwerty, I will have to throw my money elsewhere. Hopefully Samsung doesn't follow this idea because I really enjoyed my last Samsung phone.

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Touchscreen keyboards pale in comparison to the feel and usability of a physical keyboards. In all honesty I think this is a bad move on HTC's part because Samsung will continue to provide a device with the option. No one is saying that they need to produce all their devices with QWERTY keyboards but they should provide the option for some people. My wife is going to hate this, she is a texting person and hates the touchscreens.

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CDeeter replied on Sun, Apr 22 2012 10:30 AM

Another point in favor of physical keyboards is that they don't eat up screen real estate.

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ZTimpson replied on Thu, Apr 26 2012 10:24 PM

the full QWERTY keyboards, are the only way to go for alot of texting people!

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