Keyboards on the screen of your computer are only really helpful when you have no physical keyboard in front of you. Instead of hunting and pecking on a display, it’s (almost) always faster to type on a physical keyboard – and it wouldn’t make sense to type on a screen when your keyboard is closer. So why has Google added an onscreen keyboard for Chrome OS?
In the latest Stable Channel Update for Chrome OS, Google has made note of an onscreen keyboard. This onscreen keyboard is able to be used to type as well as use “device features (top row)” with a pointing device. It could be that we’re headed for a new category of Chrome OS devices.
Supposing we do see a “Chrometab” device – a tablet, that is – will this device be all that different from the Chromebook machines we’re working with today? Not especially. When you’re just browsing the web or checking out Chrome apps, the big difference is in clicking or tapping.
Touchscreen interaction has been turned on for a while in Chrome OS – think of the Chromebook Pixel. If Google is thinking of releasing Chrometab devices in the future, it’ll be at least several months off. They don’t just go release a keyboard function then immediately base a whole device category after it.