Jump to 3:40 to skip the installation instructions
Yesterday, Google officially took the wraps off their latest firmware upgrade: Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. While the name hasn’t changed, there are a couple of noteworthy additions making their way into the software, one of which was a new virtual keyboard Google is calling Gesture Type. Similar to Swype (and soon, SwiftKey), Google’s new keyboard gives users the option of making swiping gestures when inputting words instead of the traditional tap-to-type method. Definitely not for everyone, a key benefit to swiping is easier single-handed use, which, if you’re anything like me, your other hand always seems to find itself preoccupied with other things.
We were able to get our hands on an early build of the app before the link was abruptly taken down from Android Police (Google doesn’t play around when it comes to their leaked apps). While we won’t be able to supply direct links to download in this post, we do have a quick hands-on video with the Gesture Type keyboard complete with “Skype-like” font suggestions. Don’t worry, guys — that font has been done away with in later builds.
I was able to install the keyboard without a hitch on my Galaxy S3 and it’s working great. I did have trouble getting the suggestions to popup when going back and editing my messages, but I’m sure it’ll work fine in later builds (or on the Nexus 4). For now, check out our hands-on with the Android 4.2 Gesture Type keyboard (jump to 3:40 to skip the installation tutorial).