The Wall St. Journal today covers two different physical keyboard attachments for iPhone, the $100 (aptly-named?) ‘Typo’ and the Solomatrix Spike. The TL;DR is that both of these keyboards are OK (Joanna Stern seems to prefer the Typo) but have fatal flaws that push them towards edge cases – people who’ve recently just shifted away from a Blackberry, have sausage fingers, or suffer from some other problem with getting data into their phone via a screen.
Their real problem is that iOS on the iPhone isn’t designed for a physical keyboard. It is designed to flip back and forth, from landscape to portrait depending on the use and the app. It was designed from the very beginning to be agile and portable and with that portability, the ultimate sacrifice was made to the smartphone physical keyboard.
To this day, I don’t think I am faster at typing and multitasking on an iPhone as I was on the physical keyboard of the 2007 Danger Sidekick that it replaced. But the wealth of other keyboard options and the ability to be both portrait and landscape more than make up for the speed.