Science and Tech
By Liyo Kikon
When you think about cool gadgets, it’s usually the most unexpected ones which catch our eyes and TAP strap has got to be one of the most unusual gadgets out there. TAP will replace your keyboard in the weirdest way imaginable and when you’re using it, everyone will be wondering what in the world you’re doing! But it sure as hell looks cool. TAP Strap is just a simple strap made of comfortable fabric which you wear like a glove and once it’s on, you can type on any surface thanks to its sensors which calculates the movement of your fingers to determine what you intend to type. Over the years, we’ve seen a ton of keyboard gadgets all the way from weirdly shaped ergonomic keyboards to laser projected keyboards, but none of them actually work well enough for anyone to be able to call it an innovation, but TAP Strap is really different from the crowd mainly because of the fact that it actually works and once you get the hang of it, your typing experience will be fast and accurate. There’s a bit of a learning curve when first using the TAP, but thankfully there’s a simple word game called TapGenius which you can download and you simply need to spend around an hour playing this game and before you know it, you will be typing like a pro on any surface.
To get started, you simply need to turn the TAP on by tapping your thumb on a flat surface three times and pair it to your phone, tablet or computer and open any application where you want to type and simply start typing. When it comes to typing, you will need a flat surface and different finger positions will represent different letters of the alphabet say if you want to type the letter “Y”, you simply have to TAP your thumb and little finger on the surface and to type the letter “W”, just tap your thumb, middle finger and little finger and as for the vowels “aeiou”, tapping the thumb alone will type “A”, the forefinger will type “E”, the middle finger “I”, the ring finger “O” and the pinkie “U”. Like I mentioned before, typing on this will require a bit of a learning curve but once you get the hang of it, you can type fast as seen on some demo videos and since it uses muscle memory rather than a standard keyboard on a touchscreen, you can type without even looking at it which will be great when you are in a meeting or secretly sending messages in a classroom *wink*. Looking at this gadget on a productivity viewpoint, it will definitely be very helpful since you just need one hand to have access to the entire keyboard and even for daily usage, once it is paired to your phone, you can send messages or type an entire email without even looking at your phone. As for other functions, the team at TAP says that this gadget will work great even while gaming on your device, say you want to move the character forward, you simply tap a specific finger and the character will move forward and the same thing goes for turning around or firing guns and any other actions which you want the character to do, it can all be achieved simply by tapping your fingers.
The device can be charged via a standard micro USB cable and you can type continuously for up to four hours and the device can be on standby mode for up to 72 hours with one charge. Charging the device from empty to full will only take 3 hours which is quite impressive since it can last a long time on a single charge. And turning the device on and off is very easy, you simply have to tap your fingers on a flat surface twice to turn it on and tap your ring finger three times to turn it off, it will also automatically turn off if not used for a long time. TAP comes in three different sizes – Large, medium and small, and depending on the size of your hand, you can get it to fit your hand perfectly and since the entire device is flexible enough to be comfortable, you can use it for long periods of time. TAP also works with both your left or your right hand which is great news for left-handed people since it is particularly difficult to get keyboards specifically tailored for left handed users. And if you have two TAP straps, you can use them on both hands and with it, you’ll get extra features along with the ability to type even faster.
The TAP Strap will be available early next year, but you can join the wait list on their official website www.tapwithus.com and be one of the first people to own one. The final product is expected to cost around $110 (approx Rs. 7,000) and they provide worldwide shipping. So, if you want to be one of the first people to have a cool keyboard which does not even look like a keyboard, then TAP strap is for you.