An accessible directions-based text entry method using two-thumb touch typing
Text entry on smartphone is a common activity in people's daily lives, and this activity heavily relies on users’ visual feedback and advanced motor function. Generally, the average touchscreen size of current smartphones is between 5 and 5.6 inches and can be difficult for users who are visually impaired or have reduced motor function to input text. Thus, this study proposed an eyes-free text entry strategy for smartphones based on bimanual gestures and QWERTY layout. The QWERTY keyboard layout was split into two symmetric sections and each part contain to multiple characters. The users entre text by moving their thumbs in the direction of the desired characters. Furthermore, a longitudinal user study with 20 participants was performed to evaluate the proposed text entry method. During the four training sessions, the participants achieved text entry speeds of 11.1 WPM in eyes-free mode and 14.1 WPM in eyes-on mode. The experiment results show that the proposed method holds potential for supporting users with low vision and certain types of reduced motor function for entry text on smartphones.