By Stephen Schenck | August 13, 2012 5:29 PM
Every time we hear about a new phone with a hardware QWERTY keyboard, we get a little excited. That’s not because we’re necessarily fans of any one input method over another, but considering how few models have keyboards nowadays, and how even fewer of them are really top-tier devices, it’s always nice to get some more options. Nokia was curious exactly what users looked for in their phones, so it recently ran a survey to get an idea of just where these preferences lie.
The results are interesting, showing a much larger share of users that prefer QWERTY keyboards than we might have expected, given the lackluster attention many manufacturers give to such models. Worldwide, nearly half of all respondents voiced support for QWERTY. Pure-touchscreen devices only captured about 35% of of the vote, with the remainder split between voice commands and numerical keyboards; Nokia still makes plenty of phones with touchscreens as well as number pads, so it wanted to get data on those, too.
It turns out that this data also reveals some trends of differences between certain nations. In the US, for instance, QWERTY support take a dive, and it moves down to 33% while touchscreens take the lead at 47%. There’s also much more interest in voice commands; we can’t help but think that all these changes might be a consequence of iPhone popularity.
What camp do you fall into? Are keyboards a thing of the past, or would you rather that your next phone feature a hardware keyboard?