Project image
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$1,792
pledged of $10,000pledged of $10,000 goal
25
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Wed, April 22 2015 6:49 PM UTC +00:00
$1,792
pledged of $10,000pledged of $10,000 goal
25
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Wed, April 22 2015 6:49 PM UTC +00:00

About

There are a lot of new iPhone keyboards with nice features, but they all share one problem: they use the inefficient QWERTY key layout designed for a typewriter...in 1873! 

That seemed crazy to me, so I designed the patent-pending HERO Keyboard which enlarges and centers the most-used keys, and puts the common letter combos next to each other. 

The result? When typing, finger travel is reduced by about 35% (or "3 feet per tweet," as my marketing goes). Keyboard features and gimmicks can be easily copied, but the patent-pending HERO layout is a fundamental change that could make mobile typing faster and easier for everyone. 

Why I need funding

You may have noticed in the video that HERO is already for sale (herokeyboard.com), so why do I need funding for version 2.0? Let me explain...

Unlike many of the new iPhone keyboard apps, HERO isn't coming from an existing company or venture capital. It's just me -- a UX designer working full-time with a wife and four kids living in a van down by the river! Okay the van part isn't true, but the rest is. Although I have a fairly wide range of design skills, I can't program an app (especially not one as tricky as a keyboard), so I pay contract developers to do the coding. 

I was hoping HERO's current bare-bones version would sell enough to fund the much-needed enhancements to make it a truly viable keyboard, but it hasn't -- I'm currently about $1.5k in the hole on the project. I admit I considered throwing in the towel and calling it a failure, but it's hard to say if the lack of sales is due to: a) my app marketing noob-ness, b) the lack of good auto-correct and auto-completion, and/or c) it's just too different or not a good idea. 

But I can't ignore that the idea makes sense -- 3 feet per tweet, after all -- and it could really improve the mobile typing experience for us all. Since I can't afford the next development work myself, I leave the Go / No-Go decision in your capable hands! If you think we can do better than QWERTY, please donate what you can and help spread the word about herokeyboard.com and this campaign.

What the funds will cover

Based on a rough estimate from a development firm, the $10k goal should be enough to implement this core functionality:

  • Key-touch feedback
  • Good auto-correct
  • An auto-completion bar
  • HERO Slide, aka full drag / swipe letter entry, which should make it really fly!
  • Additional long-press popups and other minor updates

If funds exceed the goal, some or all of the other features on the roadmap will be implemented, such as:

  • Emoji integration
  • Text snippets and shortcuts
  • Cursor control
  • Word prediction
  • HERO "Bolt" functionality, which will really kick ass but I don't want to make the details public yet (MUHAHAHAHA! :)
  • One-handed mode for iPhone 6 PLUS and possibly iPad
  • Additional languages
  • Additional themes
  • Android support

And the t-shirts!

Backers in the T-shirt reward range will get to choose their color and size.
Backers in the T-shirt reward range will get to choose their color and size.

--

Video song credits: Songs "Fiddles McGinty" and "Life of Riley" by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com). Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Risks and challenges

The biggest risk is if development takes longer (thus costs more) than estimated, and running out of money before the core functionality is finished. To minimize that risk, I'll need to communicate often with the developer to make adjustments as early as possible so that a viable product can still be released.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    You'll be added to our HERO Backer email list to get private progress updates, and you'll be added to the Backer list on our web site.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    You'll get a very cool HERO Keyboard t-shirt, be added to our HERO Backer email list to get private progress updates, and you'll be added to the Backer list on our web site.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    You'll get the HERO Keyboard t-shirt with free US shipping and discounted International shipping, be added to our HERO Backer email list to get private progress updates, be added to the Backer list on our web site and mobile app, and participate in Beta tests (if you want :).

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    You'll get the HERO Keyboard t-shirt with free shipping, be added to our HERO Backer email list to get private progress updates, you'll be added to the VIP Backer list on our web site and mobile app, and you can participate in and provide feedback and suggestions in Beta tests (if you want :).

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Everything listed in the $100+ reward, plus your own custom keyboard theme (which would be available to everyone, but I'd create it based on what you want).

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Everything listed in the $500+ reward, plus...jeez I don't even know -- make me an offer. :-) I could give you a personal tour of historic Lawrence, Kansas, haha, with lunch on me of course.

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Funding period

- (30 days)