HERO Keyboard v2.0

The world’s most efficient keyboard.

HERO Keyboard is a non-QWERTY key layout optimized to reduce finger travel while mobile typing.

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Hello Product Hunters! I’m honored to be hunted by @mijustin, who continually inspires me! I’m a full-time UX designer with 4 kids, so I’ve done my share of one-handed baby-holding typing. There must be a better way, I thought (to type, not parent). So I designed HERO, which reduces finger travel by 35% (or “3 feet per Tweet”), and only takes a few days to get used to. You may remember v1.0 of HERO. People were intrigued by the design, but it wasn’t implemented well enough. Version 2.0 took me way too long, but it’s completely recoded for better typing action, plus: - The “Bolt” button, which you tap for SPACE, or Hold/3D-touch for numbers, cursor control, and your recent emojis and symbols. - Tilting the phone moves the keyboard to the left or right for easier 1-thumb typing. - An auto-suggest bar with 5 (not 3) suggested words. - Smarter emoji categories based on actual emoji usage stats. - A Product Hunt theme, and new subscriber themes every month. I want to add swipe, Android, other languages, GIPHY, text snippets, and more, but I’m self-funded and I use contract developers, so my funds slow my progress. HERO’s letter and Bolt views are free, and a $0.99/month subscription enables the full emoji, dialpad, and symbol views, plus new subscriber themes every month. (And it supports future development!) I also invite HERO users to our Facebook Group to give feedback and direction. Thanks for reading, and please let me know what questions or suggestions you have. You can also write me me at corey@herokeyboard.com or @herokeyboards on Twitter. Thanks!
@coreywstone @mijustin @herokeyboard @herokeyboards " I’m self-funded and I use contract developers, so my funds slow my progress" Why not go open source?
@petrev01 @johnson3650 @mijustin I've considered partnering with a developer, though few have keyboard experience, I've found. So let me make sure I understand you correctly: if I open source it, there's basically no way I could make revenue on it, correct?
@coreywstone @johnson3650 @mijustin You can make certain pieces of the software/code open-source, but wouldn't have to go open-source with 100% of everything. Here's some links! https://techcrunch.com/2016/02/0... http://www.thewindowsclub.com/op... [that second one looks a little bit outdated, but still has some good stuff] The Mozilla Foundation is a great example here of a very large foundation (revenue-wise, ~300 million in 2014) that also puts out open-source and free software. Red Hat is another one. [https://investors.redhat.com/fin...]
@petrev01 @coreywstone @mijustin This^ Open sourcing is not a sure fire thing that you're going to have developers offering to help, but if people enjoy the project they'll certainly try. You'll be able to moderate what changes go in and out and github has its own issue tracker so that will be convenient as well.
I really like HERO - it is very efficient and intuitive. I downloaded it a few days ago and am still getting used to it, however, I am looking forward to using it more than my regular iOS Keyboard. Brilliant product and design @coreywstone! I can't wait to see what comes next!
@3raxton Thanks Braxton!
I never really understood why people bothered with this weird looking keyboards, just to shave a fraction of a second off their typing time. But since I've had an iPhone 7plus and tried typing one handed, I totally get it... The tilt to move the keyboard feature is genius! I think this is the first keyboard I've seen with a monthly subscription fee. Will be interesting to see how they works compared to a one off charge Good work!
@marsh931 Thanks Alex. Yes, frankly I'm not sure the subscription will work either. My version 1.0 was a one-time fee, and the downside of that was that a) people could not try it free, and b) when you consider customer acquisition costs and basically free lifetime updates, it's hard for an indie designer (who pays for contract dev work) to do that for a buck or two unless you get a bunch of users. I'm hoping I can get a dedicated user base (who I'll actively seek input from on the HERO Facebook User Group) which can fund future development.
@coreywstone @marsh931 Have you looked at a premium one-time fee? I;m trying this out, and I like it, I wouldn't be opposed for paying $9.99 for it as opposed to the typical $2.99 I do for paid apps.
@arasheedphoto @marsh931 Hi Adam. That's not a bad idea, and I had someone else suggest that as well. I'll keep it in mind - thanks!
@coreywstone @marsh931 I have installed thousands of apps and paid for quite a number of them. If even a portion of these developers move to a subscription model, I would be unable to pay my monthly bills.
@jasonology @marsh931 I hear you, though many indie app developers can't pay their monthly bills. :) I'll definitely consider switching the pricing model since several people have thought the same thing. Now I just wish I hasn't spent so long getting the subscription to work! LOL. Thanks
How about the auto correction and word suggestion features? Will you support swipe type
@shellehs Hi Alamo. v2 has pretty good word suggestion, and it shows 5 suggestions (rather than the normal 3), which seems to help. Right now there's only auto-correct for contractions (eg, it will change "dont" into "don't". I definitely want to add swipe as soon as possible - I just couldn't afford the cost to get it developed yet. :/
I have yet to test out HERO. As previously suggested, I would prefer to pay a higher price rather than a monthly subscription even for adding emojis, etc.