Tablets have such large screens that sometimes using the onscreen keyboard can be rather cumbersome. To address that issue, a report dating back to March earlier this year suggested that Google could be looking to update its Gboard and introduce a split layout to make it easier for users to type.
Now thanks to several screenshots shared on Twitter by Mishaal Rahman, we have an idea of what it could look like. Basically, it splits the keyboard into two, allowing users to use their thumbs on either side of the screen to type instead of having to reach for the middle of the display for certain characters.
Here are screenshots of Gboard's upcoming "Split Keyboard" interface for tablets/foldables. Credits to @RKBDI for posting the screenshots and sharing the flags to enable the feature over on Telegram: https://t.co/F8RGS8bQIO pic.twitter.com/q1vcDQs2r1
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) May 25, 2022
As XDA Developers points out, Gboard isn’t the first keyboard app to adopt a split design. Other keyboards like the Samsung Keyboard and SwiftKey have long supported a split design, but Google’s design is slightly different. In Gboard’s case (and assuming the screenshots are the final design), Google will keep the spacebar in the middle stretching across the app.
This is versus the Samsung Keyboard where each side of the keyboard has its own spacebar. Ultimately it achieves the same thing, but in Gboard’s case, having the spacebar across the entire app does help a bit with versatility, especially if you’re the type of person who tends to hit the middle of the spacebar when they type.
It is unclear when this update is expected to roll out, but with Google rumored to be planning their own foldable smartphone, we can’t say we’re surprised that they are working on updating some of its apps to make it more foldable-friendly.
Source: XDA Developers