50° Good Morning
50° Good Morning

Tom Hanks' Hanxwriter typewriter app tops App Store charts

Actor Tom Hanks participates in a Twitter chat

Actor Tom Hanks participates in a Twitter chat about his new typewriter app, Hanxwriter, with Apple's @AppStore. Credit: Twitter / @tomhanks

Remember the good old days of clacking away on a typewriter? Tom Hanks does.

With a new app that mimics the look, feel and sound of a typewriter, he’s bringing that experience to the iPad generation — and they’re eating it up.

The iPad app, called Hanxwriter, has claimed the No. 1 spot in the App Store in less than a week since its launch.

With sound effects like clunking keys and dings when hitting return, Hanxwriter gives users a dose of nostalgia for a time when typing was a more deliberate pursuit. There’s even a setting to switch off deleting, so that typos leave behind a permanent mark.

“I wanted to have the sensation of an old manual typewriter — I wanted the sound of typing if nothing else . . . cause I find it's like music that spurs along the creative urge. Bang bang clack-clack-clack puckapuckapuckapucka ...” Hanks tweeted the day the app launched in a live Twitter chat.

As for how Hanks envisions people will use his app, he tweeted that he doesn’t expect term papers or legal briefs to be written via Hanxwriter. But it’s ideal for “the notes and passages and journal entries that you want to have stick around for a bit…,” he added, waxing poetic. “For the love letter that has to look, you know, special. For the nine paragraphs that leap out of your mind ... so strongly that you need to see them ASAP  — and print them out immediately ... and pin to your bulletin board or refrigerator door so your household can behold your genius.”

So what does one do with their Hanxwriter masterpieces when they’re done? Turns out you can print, email or share the vintage-looking documents when they’re complete.

The app, which Hanks developed with the firm Hitcents, is a hit so far, with more than 1,600 reviews averaging out to a 4.5-star rating on the App Store.

See Hanks' Twitter chat with the @AppStore below. Mobile users can see the chat at the link above.

More news