The iPhone’s touchscreen keyboard has been contentious since the phone’s announcement a year and a half ago. While many have adjusted to the lack of physical keys, one demographic is still taking issue with the touch-sensitive input method: those with long fingernails.
We’re not just talking Freddy Krueger or Sabretooth here, either. Some women with longer fingernails are accusing Apple of misogyny because the input method does not work well for them. A post at the LA TImes’s Technology blog cites the example of a 39 year old consultant and lecturer who has fingernails between a quarter and an eighth of an inch long and says that she has difficulty typing on her iPhone.
I have a number of female friends with iPhones or iPod touches, none of whom have ever made mention of specific typing problems that they have, but perhaps their nails aren’t long enough to interfere. For my own part, my nails tend to be embarrassingly short, so I have more trouble with things that require fingernails.
That said, I think calling this misogyny on the part of Apple’s designers is overstating the matter. Nor do I think that including a stylus, as one woman suggests, is the answer—that’s just not how the phone is designed to be used. There after after-market styli available, though it remains to be seen just how well they actually work.
Let’s open this up to our long-fingernailed readers of both genders: how do you handle typing on the iPhone? Does it give you problems, or have you found a way around it?