We use software keyboards on our smartphones all the time without giving it much thought, but they don’t always work well on larger devices. Google may soon be adding a split keyboard to Gboard, though, in an attempt to better optimize it for tablets and foldables.
While Gboard works just fine on devices with bigger screens, it could be much better. What users currently see when using Gboard on a tablet is a stretched keyboard layout that makes it difficult to reach every key. Instead of being able to type with two thumbs comfortably, users are most likely just tapping each key with their index finger, which is slower and less convenient.
Above, you can see screenshots of this new split keyboard feature, as shared by Twitter user RKBDI. The new layout option that Gboard is testing will split the keyboard into two, pushing each half towards its respective edge on your device. It’ll be easier and more comfortable to use, and help you type your search inquiries or text messages faster whenever you use larger displays.
Gboard won’t be the first software keyboard to have this feature. There are plenty of other apps out there you can use to switch up the way your keyboard displays, whether it’s to split it, move it to one side, or make it smaller. However, it’s nice to see Gboard focus on and prioritize this feature, as apps don’t always get properly optimized for tablets and such.
The split-keyboard feature was first spotted back in March, but we don’t know when the feature will roll out, as Google has yet to officially release any details on it. However, once it does, you should be able to enable it from Gboard’s three-dot menu on any device you want to use it.
via XDA Developers