One of the things that stood out immediately at yesterday’s WWDC keynote presentation, as a feature with big appeal for iPad users, was the ability to split the iPad keyboard in iOS 5.
I’ve been trying this out, along with a number of other new features, on a V1 iPad running the first iOS 5 beta. It’s a pretty slick feature. You can just pull the keyboard apart with a natural and easy movement anyplace where the virtual keyboard is available – and it splits into two sections as shown above – with 17 keys on the left side and 20 keys on the right.
You can split the keyboard in portrait or landscape mode; for me it feels far more comfortable and effective to use in portrait mode. It is definitely taking some getting used to in terms of remembering which keys are on which side, but it feels as if with some time it will be more effective for me than the normal keyboard when in portrait mode.
It works in every 3rd party app I’ve tried so far as well.