According to a number of reports, the iPhone (three iPhone stories in one day you say?) could soon get handwriting recognition. That’s based on the interpretation of a recent job advertisement which calls for a full-time “Handwriting Recognition Engineer” to work at Apple HQ in Cupertino.
The successful candidate will be responsible for “advancing Apple’s handwriting technology for Mac OS X” — which shouldn’t be difficult given that the current attempt (Inkwell) is pretty shabby. However, it appears that “the recognition technology… may extend beyond Mac OS X to other applications and the iPhone”.
Perhaps Apple is putting this in as a teaser, knowing full well that trying to write anything meaningful using your fingers on a relatively small touchscreen is just asking for trouble.
After all, if businesspeople’s fingers are too fat to type on the iPhone how are they going to scribble down memos?
Don’t get me started on Palm’s weird system for inputting text, one character at a time. Handwriting was meant for pen on paper, and that’s how it should stay.
Still, Apple seem to disagree. Maybe we’ll see larger touchscreen tablets from Apple, or some special thin pointing device. That’ll be a stylus then.