I’m bilingual, there I said it. I know another language other than English. That language happens to be Spanish. For all my friends on the main land NO I’m not Mexican and NO I’m not illegal, for the record I consider myself a “Puerto Rican” born in Brooklyn, NY. I’m a US citizen that speaks two languages! This post is NOT about that, my status, or if I need or have a green card! This is about technology.
It amazes me the amount of power that my phone has, if you consider for a moment that the Apollo 11 mission was carried out using a computer called “AGC” (Apollo Guidance Computer) it had 2k of memory and 32K of storage, and they were able to send someone to the moon and back on 2K of RAM!
Today my phone is an iPhone 4s with 32GB of storage 512MB of RAM and a Dual Core 1 GHz – A9 CPU. For the most part I love my phone. I carry a vast amount of my music collection, documents, emails, etc. Even the list of contacts I carry is amazing. I looked the other day and I could not believe that I had 900+ contacts… 900!
That means that at some point I thought that keeping these persons’ information in my phone was important! And I did it more than 900 times! That brings me to the point of this blog post, I interact with people that speak Spanish like my mom and dad, a hybrid like my wife, brother and cousins, and English with mostly the main landers.
The iPhone 4s has this cool feature that allows you to set the current keyboard language; this is helpful for letters/symbols that are mostly used in Spanish, the dictionary and even Siri. For the most part all three work as advertised and to tell you the truth, I think Siri works better in Spanish than English.
Here is where I think that there is room for improvement; If I talk to let’s say “Bob” mostly in English and send him txt in English as well and “Carlos” mostly in Spanish, I think that when you set up your contact one of the questions/fields should be Keyboard preference and your options should be keyboards you have currently configured in your phone. That way when you start a txt session with a contact, your phone automatically selects the keyboard language and dictionary for the correct language. It has happened to me many times that I type a full paragraph and when I look at it in the little window the auto-correct has completely changed the message because my language was set to the incorrect one.
My point is that… Smartphones with 1000 times more computing power than the computer that sent 3 astronauts to the moon and back should be “smarter “Phones. Are we settling for what a few innovators think we want? Maybe we are not demanding features that we REALLY want or need.