A Chinese third-party developer claims that Apple has bought his software for recognizing handwritten input on the iPhone. Screenshots of an iPhone OS 2.0 build incorporating handwriting technolgy as a method for entering Chinese characters surfaced a few weeks ago, but it now appears that Apple may have acquired this function rather than developed it in-house.
The developer is currently unwilling to discuss his work, citing a non-disclosure agreement with Apple, and has sent requests for removal to forums publishing screenshots of his previously freely available third-party application.
Dubbed "HWPen," the third-party handwriting recognition application was developed by Hanwang.com.cn to allow Chinese character input on the iPhone, but the program works equally well with English input. Apple has reportedly stripped English character input from the tool, sieving for only Chinese character recognition for iPhone OS 2.0.
Oddly, HWPen is still available as a third-party application for jailbroken iPhones. In order to install the software, follow our guide for enabling third-party apps on the iPhone, then use Installer.app to add the source: iphonecake.com/src/all
To add a source (as also described in our guide), tap "Sources," button, then tap "Edit" in the upper-right corner, and finally "Add" in the upper-left corner. Enter the URL of the source you would like to add and press "OK." Installer.app will add the source, and you will be able to find the new application(s) in the normal "Install" menu.