Voice technology is going to replace typing, and it’s going to happen soon. There is nothing we can do about it, but that’s a good thing.
Wait, what’s going on?
Physical keyboards (and that includes touchscreens) are about to suffer a mass extinction event by way of voice technology. It might not seem obvious, because most of the world lives in the eye of the storm. But if you look at the big picture, you start to notice the pattern.
- Your grandma uses voice input, and so do all of her friends. She can’t type, but that doesn’t make her any less efficient. She mastered it seemingly overnight.
- Your kids use voice input. They goad Alexa into helping them with home assignments. They make their favourite characters tell them stories, and employ black magic trickery to change how their voice sounds online.
- More and more apps get voice-adjacent features, especially speech-to-text.
- Said speech-to-text is nearing 100% accuracy. (We’d know, we have developed a device relying on that exact fact.)
- Voice tech revenues.
What about those cases when using a keyboard is the only option, you ask. Like when you text your friend on the bus, quietly. Or type a report in your cubicle surrounded by identical cubicles where other reports are being typed out. What about users with a speech impairment? Strong accent? Sore throat?
The world secretly hates their keyboards.
Voice is going to replace typing. Brain chips are going to replace typing. The process has begun. Typing is going to be replaced for the very same reason why you no longer use candles for illumination. Several inventions combine, creating the suitable zeitgeist. Faster information processing is calling for faster input.
Typing was always a temporary crutch.
Entering commands letter by letter seems barbaric when you know just how fast your laptop really is.
It seems even more barbaric when you eventually develop carpal tunnel syndrome and scoliosis from communicating with the machine in slow-mo.
Now that we have better ways to talk to computers, typing is going to fade into obscurity. I like to think the invention of the computer mouse landed the first blow and broke the keyboard-centric paradigm.
Even writing by hand is better than typing.
I mean, it’s objectively faster and you can write on anything. Writing is closer to voice input than typing is. Think about that.
The keyboard is going to be on its last legs by the 2030s. Most people are going to be using the combination of voice technology and predictive typing (bastardised, simplified keyboard layout). When the brain-computer interface devices become affordable and mainstream, the keyboard will disappear.
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