HTC Sense keyboard for the Nexus One, G1, Magic and others
If you have ever seen the HTC Sense keyboard such as is seen on the Hero and Desire you may have looked on enviously. Compared to the bog standard Android keyboard the Sense is a breath of fresh air.
The standard Android keyboard as supplied on the Nexus One looks like this:- keyboard1.jpg
The keys, for me, are too close and with the Nexus One's slight misalignment of the sensors for these it is all too easy to mistype. I find myself forever correcting as the centre point of each key is in the upper third. So you have to consciously misplace your finger ever so slightly to avoid mistyping. Google/HTC are reported fixing this in the next update - we'll have to wait and see about that. There is no third party calibration tool that I know of.
The HTC_IME (Sense) keyboard, on the other hand, is a much more effective affair, looking like this:- htcime.jpg
It is an altogether much more controllable device, various customisations may be had. The shifted characters are accessed merely by pressing and holding the relevant key for a moment whereupon a selection of alternative characters are available.
In use the HTC_IME keyboard takes not very much getting used to. It is entirely intuitive and logical in use. It has haptic feedback, this can be turned off, that is very useful and a reasonable typing speed can be got up to easily.
I find the HTC_IME a much more practical keyboard to use than the standard Android. However, it is added as a complementary one to the standard unit. If you do not like it, or wish to switch back to the stock unit, it is a simple job to do so.
If you've never done this before it can be a bit confusing. Basically all you have to do is to bring up any text entry box, then press and hold in the typing space until the Edit text dialog pops up. Press Input method and (if you've installed the HTC_IME.apk correctly) there will be an optional choice between Android keyboard and HTC_IME mod. Click on whichever you want and the new keyboard will load up.