Big Buttons Keyboard Standard 1.8.1 Review

This free Android app kicks other virtual keyboards' buttons.

You've got plenty of options when it comes to virtual keyboard apps for your Android device, including some far-out concepts, but we always come back to those layouts with the most familiar look and feel. Big Buttons Keyboard Standard is a free Android app by Chicago Logics based on their Delta II mobile keyboard technology. With a modified QWERTY layout (and other choices) as well as options like click sound, vibrate on tap, and a resizable keypad, it kicks other keyboards' buttons. We tried it on a Samsung Galaxy S3 running Android 4.4.1.

When you install and set up Big Buttons Keyboard Standard, you may receive a warning message that more or less calls the app out as a keylogger, but the developer insists it's not and says to ignore the warning. Big Buttons' icon opens its setup page, which includes the aforementioned options to click or vibrate on key press as well as a Two Spaces option that inserts a period and activates the Shift key; the ability to choose between Android and iPhone-style button legends; and our choice of QWERTY, QWERTZ, and AZERTY layouts. We set Big Buttons as our default keyboard, closed all the settings, opened a new message, and tapped the address field to open the virtual keyboard. Big Buttons' keyboard took up about half of our phone's screen. Its buttons are not only indeed bigger than the typical virtual keyboards' buttons but also better rendered. The modified QWERTY layout groups one line of keys from a full-size keyboard into two compact rows and includes much-needed extras such as @ and .com keys. We really like how the Delete key's "Del" label made it difficult to miss.

Chicago Logic claims its keyboard designs can increase your data entry speed significantly, and our experience suggests that's no idle boast. The buttons are large and clear, and the vibrating key option provides welcome tactile feedback in less-than-ideal conditions (got mittens?). We keyed faster and with fewer mistakes using Big Buttons than with our phone's usual keyboard. The clincher? We briefly restored the default keyboard but went right back to Big Buttons.

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