Franklin Tessler, M.D., C.M:

Currently, the main unique problem with touchscreen keyboards is their lack of tactile feedback. Unlike mechanical keys, which move and offer resistance, virtual keys don’t react when they’re pressed. As a work-around, manufacturers typically let you turn on audible key clicks, but that’s not always effective, particularly in noisy surroundings. As a result, says Hedge, users strike virtual keys with as much as eight times the force as they tap real ones — and all that force puts strain on your fingers, wrist, and forearm.

I’ve seen this many times. Personally I don’t think I strike touchscreen keys very hard at all, but I doubt I am the majority case. I will say that the most evident cases of “over pressing” is among the older users — as far as I have seen.

Because of that, I am not sure that this is a problem in dire need of solving. As touch screens become more prevalent we become more accustomed to them — and thus will ease off on the pressure we apply to software keys.

At least I would think…

[via David Zax]