Tom Hanks brings a retro touch to iPad typing with Hanx Writer

Tom Hanks brings a retro touch to iPad typing with Hanx Writer

Tom Hanks, actor and noted typewriter enthusiast, has released Hanx Writer, a typewriter app for the iPad, onto the App Store. Hanx Writer attempts to replicate the experience of writing on an old typewriter, but with the modern convenience afforded by the iPad.

The keys on Hanx Writer's keyboard are shaped like typewriter keys. The typing view presents the keyboard, the document, and all of the expected parts you would see on a typewriter. The app is free to download, and you'll get one typewriter look, the Hanx Prime Select.

Two more are available for purchase, the Hanx 707 and Hanx Golden Touch. Each of these are available for $2.99, and include the ability to create multiple documents, choose ribbon colors, as well as app background colors. You could also pay $4.99 for the Writer's Block Bundle, which includes the 707 and Golden Touch, along with the other features.

Anyone looking to replicate the typewriter experience on their iPad can give Hanx Writer a shot right now. It's available for free from the App Store.

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Joseph Keller

News Writer for Mobile Nations. Fascinated by the ways that technology connects us.

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Reader comments

Tom Hanks brings a retro touch to iPad typing with Hanx Writer


Downloaded and upgraded. Very cool. Is it at all possible to add accents (ç, à, á, â, ã) used in Portuguese, Spanish and French?

No and sort of yes. If you type the accent, be it acute (áéíóú) or grave (àèìòù), then the app either freezes or crashes, strangely. The Spanish "ñ" poses no problem. If however your virtual keyboard is set to the language of your text, just type without accents and rely on auto-correct.

Of course, these scenarios are both bugs which I have both tweeted and emailed to HitCents, the real app developer. Hanks just brought the idea, put his name on it and gets the money. Just wait for an updated.

The critical idea behind Hanx Writer is — you must remember — to write, write, write, write without opening the doors to any sort of self-induced resistance: typos, bad grammar, perfectionism, etc. That is why Hanx Writer is a VIRTUAL typewriter, not any sort of text editor or word processor.

When you write ideas, first research, then outline, then write like an animal. The last thing to worry about is editing, proof reading and peer pressure.

Of course, on a real typewriter accents are possible. There is no excuse for Hanks and HitCents to allow writers to edit at least that aspect on an on-the-go basis.

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Maybe in iOS 8 you will get the option to do so. As far as I understand third party keyboards will have this kind of access. Correct me if I'm wrong.

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