one-handed keyboard for Windows 10 on phablets

Although Microsoft rattled off numerous new apps found in Windows 10 Technical Preview for Phone build 10051, one feature we previously did not know about slipped by us: one-handed thumb keyboard for large screen phones.

Evidently, Microsoft is giving users an option to have the full-sized keyboard, or a smaller 'squished' one that justifies left or right, depending on your preferred hand usage.

The feature is only found in large screen phones, which for so far is the 6-inch Lumia 1520 (we have not tested this on other devices). For instance, our Lumia 635 does not have this option, which presumably makes sense since that phone has a smaller 4.5-inch display.

To access the option, just do this:

One-handed Keyboard in Windows 10 for Phone

  • Open the keyboard in any app
  • Press and hold the '&123' key on the left side
  • Choose the keyboard icon
  • Select which option you want: full, left, or right

Alternate Method (easier, quicker)

  • Swipe left or right on the space bar key

When justified right, the keyboard can be used one-handed in your right handed, and vice versa for left justified. It is a neat little change.

Interestingly, even the full keyboard is indented from the sides on the Lumia 1520. This change improves our typing as it naturally fits our grip on the phone better than the current one in Windows Phone 8.1.

Considering the controversy over hamburger menus, which seemingly veers from one-handed usage, it is interesting to see Microsoft give one-handed typists a nod with this new feature. Evidently focusing on one-handed use is not dead at Microsoft. Now we are curious to see what else they can do.

Watch the video above to see it all in action! Jump into our Windows 10 for phone forums to discuss any issues, problems, or tricks with the new OS.

Missed our video tour of the new build? Just hit this link to get all the details.