Apple Patent Shows Multi-Touch Gestures For Keyboard
The U.S. Patent Office has released another patent application from Apple, Inc. Titled “Swipte Gestures for Touch Screen Keyboards”, the appliation outlines several practical suggestions for the use of several swipe gestures in combination with the onscreen keyboard provide quick access to frequently used key functions.
For example, erasing and basic punctuation insertion, directional swipes (also referred to herein as “swipe gestures”) over the alphabetic keys can be used as an alternative to striking certain keys. Because the Space and Backspace keys are quite frequently used, they are logical candidates for the rightward and leftward swipes, respectively. Leftward and rightward swipes intuitively match the cursor travel caused by these symbols. Following this cursor movement analogy, the Enter/Return may be invoked by a downward swipe, and a Shift/Caps may be invoked by an upward swipe. Alternatively, as the Enter and Shift functions may be less frequently invoked, these may be substituted for other functions as well. One alternative mapping for the upward swipe, for example, could be to activate an alternative numeric and punctuation keypad or a particular punctuation symbol like an apostrophe or period.
They show a few suggestions for sample gestures in the document, including ones for the return key and delete key:
These are just single-finger gestures. As with the Mac, more fingers could modify the gesture. While a single-fingered swipe to the left might mean delete a letter, using two fingers could mean delete the word, or three fingers for deleting the line of text.