iPhone and iPod Touch Landscape Email App Reviews

There are currently five applications that allow you to write and reply to emails in a landscape orientation, which widens and enlarges the keyboard to increase ease of use for typing.

When filling out forms on the internet through MobileSafari, the landscape keyboard is available if you turn the iPhone horizontally.

The degree of accuracy in, and pleasure for, typing significantly increases for me as I am not so constrained by the limited spacing between the keys and I do not accidentally strike adjacent letters with my big fingers.  Unfortunately, with the iPhone’s native Mail app, landscape orientation with the larger keyboard is not an option.

However, thanks to a handful of third party developers, typing emails in landscape orientation is now possible!

Compose, Lettera, Sideways, TouchType and Wide Email  are all programs designed to allow for writing and responding to emails in a landscape orientation. Lettera and Sideways cost $1.99, while the remaining three sell for just $0.99. I used TouchType personally and have some hands-on comments below.


Compose boasts a smaller font size to accommodate maximum characters in the text area. It received 4 stars and 14 reviews in the iTunes App Store. Here are a few notable extras that may be included in an expected update:

  • posts with photo attachments can be sent directly to Twitter
  • cross-posting as a Status message to Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Yahoo and AIM (so you can quickly post “Out to lunch!” to all accounts or only the ones you activate)
  • posting to Friendfeed! as a link, picture or note


Lettera delivers a typing experience on a replica of an Italian modern design classic typewriter. The widescreen keyboard app can deliver “elegant notes with a touch of personality.”

It received 2.5 stars and 2 reviews in the iTunes App Store, these reviews stated that the App would crash and / or freeze often. Some features to be aware of:

  • typewriter sound effects
  • use of the built-in accelerometer to start a new line of typing
  • share notes as elegantly formatted PDF files
  • choose different paper colors and textures
  • choose between US and Latin Keyboards


Sideways received 4 stars and 16 reviews in the iTunes App Store. Highlights include:

  • exporting the text to Mail or Twitterific
  • text is saved between launches
  • more vertical space is preserved than competing applications
  • user-selectable text magnification
  • when sending to email, you can opt to have the first line of text as the subject
  • handles foreign and special characters


TouchType received 4 stars and 108 reviews in the iTunes App Store. Its features include:

  • spell check, with support for 86 languages
  • saves texts for reuse or drafts for later completion
  • users can create multiple signatures for email messages
  • auto-saves every 30 seconds or when application closes
  • full support for international languages and special characters
  • support for Twitter is planned for the next update
  • saved drafts cycle through when selecting the “Load” key

Wide Email

Wide Email also uses the wider, landscape mode keyboard to write emails. Wide Email received 4 stars and 44 reviews in the iTunes App Store. Its features include:

  • can work with accented characters and non-Latin characters such as Japanese, Chinese, Russian and Korean
  • interface rotates to whatever orientation you wish to keep it in, even upside down
  • saves drafts for completion later
  • automatically saves copies of sent emails
  • automatically saves drafts if program is interrupted
  • saved drafts appear labeled in their own folders and sent mail in their own subfolders to delineate messages at a glance (this is a great feature if you constantly keep many drafts on hand as it will allow you to efficiently locate the appropriate emails that need to be completed)

I purchased and have used TouchType for the last two weeks. The keyboard is wide enough to allow two-thumb typing comfortably, although there is still a learning curve because there is still no tactile feedback from the screen.

Sending and replying to emails works flawlessly. I have not had any difficulty using special characters, i.e. “&, %,” etc. The application loads and transfers text to mail quickly. One funny quirk is that when you orient the iPhone to the upside down position in portrait mode, the screen disappears and only reappears when you change the position of the phone to any other orientation.

All in all, it is a worthy application to have because it definitely increases productivity and decreases frustration. SMS and Notes versions are not allowed by the current iPhone SDK (Software development Kit) and may be released at a later date when Apple decides to lift certain restriction.

I would love to hear from anyone who has used the other applications mentioned here – or any similar applications that are not listed above – including thoughts, likes and dislikes regarding them.

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