Review of Hanx Writer

Reproducing an experience of writing with a typewriter has been attempted in the past in several software on a different OS. Writemonkey, one of the best text editors on Windows, can produce a typewriter sound. Ommwriter, a distraction-free writer for iPad and Mac also can generate a typewriter sound.

What sets Hanx Writer apart from the above-mentioned software is that the app tries to create the most realistic experience of using a real typewriter on the iPad. The sound and the movement of typewriter parts like type hammer, carriage, and carriage return lever are reproduced in the app as realistically as possible. I found myself getting more focused on writing a long text without interruption when I used the app. If you have a writer’s block, Hanx Writer can be an interesting solution.

Other than the successful reproduction of typewriting experience, the app has several problems that make it less sufficient as a full-fledged writing software.

First, the only format for export is a pdf file. You simply cannot export your writing as more convenient and universal txt file.

Second, if you type more than a page, the app shows an erratic behavior such as creating a blank page between the words in first and second page.

Third, creating a new document requires tapping several menus, which is rather cumbersome compared to more intuitive method like placing a document list on the left-pane and an editing area in the right pane as in Simplenote and other standard text editors for iPad.

Hanx Writer is an interesting approach that actually helps you to immerse yourself in writing but leaves much to be desired in terms of usability as a main tool for writing on the iPad. Hanx Writer is free but if you want to make multiple documents or use different keyboards, you should buy add-ons. 

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