We talked about the Arabic keyboard in the iPad with iOS 4.2 beta 1 and how it was extremely strange, the letters were in weird positions compared to regular Arabic keyboards and the diacritics button is too large and is taking the space used by the space button.
Let’s compare the different Arabic keyboards available in Apple products:
iPad Arabic Keyboard with iOS 4.2
This is the Arabic (Software) keyboard that has been added to the iPad in iOS 4.2.
iPhone/iPod touch Arabic Keyboard with iOS 3 and later
The first Arabic Keyboard on an iOS device but the iPad keyboard doesn’t even match it.
Mac OS X default Arabic keyboard
This is the default Arabic keyboard layout found in most Macs sold in the Middle East. This is Apple’s Arabic keyboard layout.
Mac OS X “PC” Arabic keyboard
The keyboard I am used to. The layout matches to the Arabic keyboard layout used in Microsoft Windows. It’s not bad for switchers.
Mac OS X Arabic “QWERTY”?
I am not even sure why we have a QWERTY Arabic keyboard. QWERTY is an English keyboard so it makes no sense. But this is the third Arabic keyboard layout pre-installed in Mac OS X.
Compare these keyboards and you will notice that there is no standard Arabic key layout. So customers switching from a Mac to an iPad or iPhone will have a difficult time getting used to the different layouts.
This is a serious flaw and Apple needs to fix it as soon as possible. They should offer multiple Arabic keyboard layouts and have a unified Arabic input layout.
Remember to visit We Want Apple Saudi Arabia petition and spread the word.