Poll: What kind of keyboard do you need on a mobile device?
I'm back home in Hawaii after spending a week in California for my part in the MIDMoves project that has only just begun for some of the team. Along with my personal Willcom D4, a BenQ S6 MID and OQO Model 2+ on loan from Intel accompanied me on my tour of several theme parks and other locations, where the devices were used, shared, and promoted.
The Atom-based gadgets have more differences than similarities, so there wasn't any significant overlap in terms of usage. When, where, and how I used each MID/UMPC depended on the situation, which in many ways was dictated by the device's form factor and data entry options. For example, I was more likely to use the BenQ's on-screen keyboard to update my Twitter status than to type a full post while standing in line. Since I can also tweet just fine on my more portable iPhone 3G or Xperia X1 and my primary work involves a lot of typing, the BenQ S6 isn't something I would consider for anything but very casual use and maybe media consumption.
For my mobile needs/wants, then, a hardware keyboard is an absolute must. Your mobile device keyboard preferences, on the other hand, are the subject of the poll you'll find below.
I cast my vote for the first option, "hardware for thumb typing." Being able to touch type on a mobile device is a nice bonus, but it doesn't make or break a purchasing decision for me.