Google as added Morse code support to its Gboard app. Reuters/Benoit Tessier

Google’s I/O 2018 event is still ongoing, and the Mountain View giant just keeps on making announcements about its latest creations and updates. Among the things Google discussed on the first day of the developer conference was the addition of Morse code support to the Gboard virtual keyboard app.

Engadget has learned that Google actually added support for Morse code after drawing inspiration from developer Tania Finlayson who has cerebral palsy. Due to her condition, Finlayson only communicates through head movements that are then translated into Morse code and into speech.

When Google announced the Morse code support of Gboard at its I/O event, it played a video showing Finalyson and her husband, Ken, who communicate using the text transmission system. Highlighted in the clip is how people like Finlayson could benefit from Gboard’s support for Morse code.

“I’m very excited that Gboard now as a Morse keyboard that allows for switch-access, with various settings to accommodate more people’s unique needs,” Finlayson said in a statement. “I’m even more excited about what people will build. From small, fun games and new teaching tools, to fully fledged communication apps based on the ML-driven Wavenet starter code.”

Gboard’s Morse code feature transforms the keyboard into two areas for short and long signals. The implementation also presents word suggestions on top of the keyboard just like in the case of the normal version of the virtual keyboard, as pointed out by TechCrunch.

The new feature also comes with cutomization settings, so users can easily modify the keyboard to meet their needs. What’s more is that the Morse code support can also be used with Switch Access, a feature that enables users to interact with Gboard through external devices. This way users could find the perfect setup that would allow them to use Gboard’s Morse code functionality to their advantage.

The Morse code feature is now available in the Gboard beta. Google has also released a printable poster that teaches people how to communicate with Morse code.