So, I was hoping that with the release of iOS 5 that support for a software Dvorak keyboard would finally happen. It didn’t. And I was momentarily swayed away from getting an iPad because, as a Dvorak typist, I would prefer not to switch to typing QWERTY just to use the coveted device.
And here I am, typing on an iPad, using the software QWERTY keyboard.
While I cannot type very well on a typical keyboard with QWERTY, using the software keyboard on the iPad is surprising acceptable. It took me a good while to fully transition from QWERTY to Dvorak, but thumb-typing on the iPhone never changed. The small keyboard size on the iPhone and the single-digit touch typing method on the device has never been a problem for me, and I suspect that the experience of typing on the iPad, while closer to normal typing, still isn’t all that different from thumb-typing on the iPhone. With no keys to press, the sensation is basically the same, even though I’ve gone from two digits to ten. The size of the on-screen keyboard is smaller than the split, ergonomic keyboards I use at home and work, and that appears to make a difference.
That said, I did purchase a Bluetooth keyboard for Dvorak typing, and i have used it. That will always be my preference for typing, as long as Apple continues to deny Dvorak typists like myself the option of an on-screen keyboard in our layout of choice. But typing QWERTY on the iPad is a sacrifice I am willing to make, and have managed to conquer without much struggle.