Most smartphones and tablets on the market these days have on-screen keyboards instead of physical keyboards. But when you pull up a keyboard on a touchscreen display it can cover half the screen, making it difficult to actually see what you’re doing.
Fujitsu’s working on a solution that lets you type without even touching the screen. Just prop up the tablet and the camera will watch you tap your fingers against a desk or table and convert your movements into text.
The idea isn’t entirely new — it’s a bit like the projection keyboards that have been around for years, shining a red or green keyboard on a flat surface and letting you type by tapping fake keys.
What’s different is that Fujitsu’s system can be built right into a phone or tablet using nothing more than a camera. That means you don’t need to carry an extra gadget with you, and it shouldn’t be particularly expensive to implement this sort of technology.
TechCrunch reports that the Fujitsu technology can determine the size and movements of your hands and position the virtual keyboard appropriately.
Right now the camera keyboard is only a prototype, but Fujitsu could include something similar in the company’s upcoming phones and tablets.