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Breaking News : Microsoft unveils Hub Keyboard app for Android that makes easy to multitask on mobile
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Microsoft has come up with a solution to get rid of all the switching between apps, especially when you’re trying to share information with someone via mail of text message. The new Android app released through the Microsoft Garage, Hub Keyboard keeps you in your conversation, bringing in relevant information to help complete common tasks.
“Personally I don’t like switching between apps to do different things on my smartphone,” says Steve Won, a senior designer on the Office team who came up with the idea for Hub Keyboard about a year ago. “But all these different apps on a smartphone, they have to conform to rules of a keyboard and that got me thinking about the project as an interesting idea I wanted to explore more. We’re giving users a wider gamut of tools.”
With Hub Keyboard, you can copy and paste recent items, easily search and share documents, share contact information, and instantly translate parts of messages.
All of these tasks are integrated into the keyboard, and you can choose which ones you want to use in any app that requires a keyboard.
“I may be in a text message conversation, then have to jump to contacts for a phone number,” Won says. “Rather than forcing users to switch between apps, we bring those apps to them.”
The project started out as personal project for Won in March 2015.
“I was thinking about how we can help users be more productive in the mobile space,” Won says. “After a couple of months hacking at it, there was an internal science fair, a showcase of independent projects, and that’s where I was able to receive a lot more feedback and attention. Things started picking up.”
After the internal science fair, he entered the project into Microsoft’s internal //oneweek Hackathon in 2015. Eventually, a team of seven emerged to work on the app that would become Hub Keyboard.
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