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Google’s Virtual Keyboard Now In Search Bar
Google is deploying their virtual keyboards on the search results pages for their non-English based search portals. For example, you can see them live at Google Poland and Google Israel and Google Russia, amongst others.
Here is a screen capture:
As you can see, the keyboard icon is next to the search box. When you click on the icon, a keyboard opens up and lets you type on this virtual keyboard. Google said in their help document:
Our virtual keyboard allows you to enter the precise search terms you want, regardless of the language keys on your physical keyboard. It can be helpful for people who use one of the many non-Latin script-based languages that require special characters such as Arabic, Greek, and Thai.
I believe Google launched virtual keyboards in June 2009 for use on third-party web sites. Now they are using them on Google search results.
Postscript: Nine days after we wrote about this, the Google blog announced it. The languages that this has been integrated with include Albanian, Arabic, Armenian, Basque, Belarusian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Finnish, Galician, Georgian, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Kazakh, Kirghiz, Macedonian, Malayalam, Mongolian, Persian, Polish, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Swedish, Tatar, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, and Uzbek. Missing your favorite language? Vote to add yours over here.