The Chinese are big fans of SMS. But how do they send them? Certainly a mobile phone doesn’t have enough buttons to allow them to type?
uses the Western characters. As a result, a choice of characters pops up, according to the transcription. The most used characters come first, of course, with the lesser used ones some scrolling away.
Even for a native speaker, I don’t think it will ever be as fast as typing directly, as can be done for European languages. But with exercise, one can come close. It’s easier than writing, since you get to select the character that ‘looks right’, and
I find it a great way to exercise – and occasionaly confuse Singaporean friends. Obviously you will need Chinese input on your phone. It’s standard for most phones sold here in Singapore.