people text on phone as fast as they can type on physical keyboard, study finds

People Text On Phone as Fast as They Can Type on Physical Keyboard, Study Finds


Have you ever noticed the speed of typing while you text someone? I think, no because no one is free to notice these tiny things. But a new study has noticed this ordinary and common habit of texting. The research claims people can type as fast as typists while texting. A team of researchers from the University of Cambridge, Aalto University, and ETH Zürich has carried out a study focusing on mobile typing speeds. The large-scale trial included more than 37,000 participants from 160 countries. The team had asked volunteers to participate in an online typing test to analyze factors like speed, errors including other aspects of typing.

They have found that people can type with an average speed of 38 words-per-minute (wpm) with two thumbs. In other words, people type 70% fast on their smartphones as they type on a physical keyboard. It also means that the speed is just around 25% less than that of traditional keyboard typing. Meanwhile one of the candidates has managed to achieve the rate of 85 wpm. Researchers involved in the study say, people are opting smartphones and using keyboards less. They anticipate the speed may bridge the gap between typing speed on a phone and keyboard. So in the future, people may gain expertise at typing via smartphones and become unskilled at using a physical keyboard.

On the one hand, increased use of mobile phones is liable for the increased typing rate. Whereas, smart features like auto-correct contribute to typing more words in a minute. Anna Feit, a scientist at ETH Zürich and study’s co-author, said the findings had amazed them. As per Anna, the speed is around 25% slower than the typing speeds they have noticed in an identical trial of a traditional keyboard. Apart from this, researchers have found a powerful impact of generation on typing. Teenagers had a higher typing speed on mobile as that of candidates above 40s. The team has presented its findings in Taipei, at the 21st Global Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services (MobileHCI).