Just in case you were wondering whether or not RIM had any patents in the works for their BlackBerry 10 keyboard, that question has been answered by the weekly approval of patents by the USPTO. RIM was issued a rather broad patent for logic-based text prediction or simply put, text entry that will think ahead for you in an attempt to guess what you’re really trying to say. The official verbiage isn’t really all that fun to go through but here is the basic abstract explanation of it all:
A handheld electronic device includes a reduced QWERTY keyboard and is enabled with disambiguation software. The device provides output in the form of a default output and a number of variants. The output is based largely upon the frequency, i.e., the likelihood that a user intended a particular output, but various features of the device provide additional variants that are not based solely on frequency and rather are provided by various logic structures resident on the device.
The device enables editing during text entry and also provides a learning function that allows the disambiguation function to adapt to provide a customized experience for the user. The disambiguation function can be selectively disabled and an alternate keystroke interpretation system provided. Additionally, the device can facilitate the selection of variants by displaying a graphic of a special key of the keypad that enables a user to progressively select variants generally without changing the position of the user’s hands on the device.
That’s a nice patent for RIM to have in their holding although; RIM hasn’t really been one to assert their patents very much over the years. Either way, should they find themselves in a position where they need or want to they’ll be ready to prove it in court.