Keyboard typing speed debunk – all you need to know

Whenever you read about typing speed you come across a few things that might be hard to understand.

You can see that somebody is typing with a certain WPM speed or CPM speed. Even if you know what that means it can be hard to picture the speed.

That’s why I wrote this article for you. This is all you need to know about speed in fast typing and typing in general.

What is a typing speed?

What does it mean that someone is typing at 40 WPM? How to read that number and what does it represent?

First let’s say what typing speed in general means, although it’s pretty intuitive.

Typing speed is the number of keys and words you can press every minute. Most of the time it is measured in WPM. It is a simpler way to measure your typing speed. There is also the more accurate way which is represented by the CPM metric.

When we talk about typing speed there are two metrics we are using. The first one is WPM and the second one is CPM.

Most of the time we see the WPM metric. But what does it mean exactly?

What does WPM mean?

The first of the metrics to measure your typing speed is WPM. It is the most common one because of its simplicity.

The metric WPM means Words Per Minute. It represents the speed at which you can type. This metric says how many words you can type every minute. It is the most common metric to measure typing speed although there is a more accurate one.

For example, 40 WPM means that you can type 40 words every one minute, 200 words every 5 minutes, 400 words every ten minutes, etc.

You can pretty well tell how long typing a certain text will take you when you know your typing speed. All you need to know is the length of the text you want to type.

The WPM metric is a common and simple way to tell your typing speed. Although it’s not the most accurate one there is.

WPM measures your typing speed in words. But there is one issue. Different words have different lengths.

Because of that WPM is not very accurate. For your personal use, it will be just enough. To get an idea of how fast can you type.

But if you want to measure your typing speed in a more precise way, the next metric will be better for you.

What does CPM mean?

CPM is another metric to measure your typing speed. It is much less common than the WPM metric and at the same time, it’s much more accurate.

This is what the CPM metric is:

The CPM means Characters Per Minute. It represents the number of characters you can type every minute. It is a very accurate metric and gives you an exact result. CPM determines exactly how many keys you are hitting every minute.

Most of the time the speed is at least 200 characters per minute (it means at least 40 WPM). This makes a lot more room for accuracy in the metric and less error in measurements.

How to test your typing speed?

The most popular answer would be to go to 10fastfingers. It is a good website and you can for sure check your typing speed there.

But there is one issue with this program – it only tests your speed with the most popular words. There is no punctuation there.

That means that the test on 10fastfingers is not very realistic compared to regular typing. Although it might be just what you are looking for. There is much more to taking a good typing test.

That’s why I created a whole article dedicated to taking a good typing test. I think it will be really helpful for you. You can read it here – ARTICLE HOW TO TAKE A TYPING TEST

What is a good typing speed?

When we get into the typing speed we should say what speed is considered fast. 

Now you know what WPM and CPM mean. However, it doesn’t help you picture the speed of typing or the exact number.

Now I will tell you what is considered fast and good typing speed.

The average typing speed is around 40 WPM. The good typing speed starts from 50 WPM and goes higher. If you type at that speed you’re already faster than most of the people on the planet. The speed of 50 WPM and more is what you can already be happy with. A speed that’s higher than 80 WPM is a very good speed.

This is the general view of the typing speed. It is only for you to have an idea. The “good” typing speed is rather a personal thing.

Good typing speed is the one that serves you well. This is the speed at that you can type in comfortably and do this in an effective way.

A lot of people would say that the “good” speed for them is something different. It is for you to have a rough idea of the speed and how fast it is.

What is the average typing speed?

What is the speed that most people type in? This speed is not the speed with the touch typing technique.

This is the speed that most people have when typing on the keyboard. Most of the time to type with this speed people look at the keyboard.

But it isn’t the only way of typing. You can actually learn to type without even looking at the keyboard. I made a whole article on that. You can check it out here – ARTICLE TYPE WITHOUT LOOKING AT THE KEYBOARD

Now back to the question – what is the exact average typing speed on a keyboard?

The average typing speed varies from 37 to 42 WPM (Words Per Minute) across most age groups. That’s why we say that the average typing speed is around 40 WPM. It means that for every minute the person types 40 words.

With the average speed, you can write 500 words in around 15 minutes. If you would do the math yourself it’s not the 15 minutes that you would get.

It takes a little longer than the calculation. It takes 12,5 minutes of rough speed. But keep in mind that you’ll mostly spend a little longer.

That is why you should add 2 or 3 minutes to the time that you expect to spend.

What is the average handwriting speed?

I’ve already said about the average keyboard typing speed. But how does it compare to handwriting speed? Which one of them is faster?

You might expect the keyboard typing to be faster. I did at first. But it’s not that much faster.

The average handwriting speed is around 35 WPM. It varies from 170 letters/minute (approximately 34 WPM) up to 200 letters/minute (approximately 40 WPM) across most adults. For 1st-grade kids, the average handwriting speed is around 5 WPM. For 6th grade around 12 WPM and for the end of middle school 17 WPM.

The average handwriting speed of an adult is around the same as the average keyboard typing speed for an adult.

Image by Nicole from Pixabay

The biggest difference is that with the same amount of practice, you can improve your keyboard typing speed much more than your handwriting speed.

That’s why it is faster to type on your keyboard than to hand-copy. With a proper technique, you can improve your keyboard typing speed in a few weeks of practice.

What is the average speaking speed?

You can wonder at what speed we normally speak. And how does it compare to the average typing speed?

At least I did wonder that when I started.

As you know we can speak pretty fast. There’s no way that the typing speed is as fast as the speaking speed. That’s what we already know.

But what exactly is that speaking speed and how fast it is compared to the typing and writing speed?

The average speaking speed is around 100 WPM. That is because on average people speak at the rate of five syllables each second. Most of the words have 3 syllables which with a rate of 5 syllables per second gives a speed of 100 WPM on average.

I guess another question is can you possibly type as fast as you speak? And the answer is – yes, you can!

Image by Florian Pircher from Pixabay

I will of course take a lot of practice. It will take months until you get to that speed. But when you finally get there it will be pretty satisfying, that’s for sure.

You could also learn to type at the speed of professional sports commentators. This is the speed of stunning 200 WPM and more.

Do you really need that speed? Probably not. 250 WPM+ is very hard to maintain. But it is definitely amazingly fast.

Is typing 30 WPM good?

A lot of people are wondering if their speed is a good speed for typing. One of the lowest speeds is 30 WPM.

This is the answer to the question is 30 WPM fast for typing:

Typing at the speed of 30 WPM is below average typing speed. When you type at the speed of 30 WPM there’s still quite some place for improvement. The most effective practice at that stage is learning the touch typing technique. I made a whole article about this for you to improve.

The article is very good for people just starting out. You need to know the basics to get to a higher speed. You can read the article here – BASICS OF TOUCH TYPING ARTICLE

Is typing 40 WPM good?

This is the next step on the speed scale. The speed that’s faster than 30 WPM. This is pretty much the average for typing speed.

Is it good though? It’s hard to say in one word.

What I mean is this is the speed that lets you use the keyboard at a relatively alright pace. It’s not fast, it’s just enough to type.

Typing at the speed of 40 WPM is the general average for keyboard typing. This is the speed that most people have when they type. It is an alright speed for you to use your keyboard. Although it is not a fast speed to type in. There is room for improvement and going back to the basics.

That’s why I put the handle on my article. I made a whole article where I talk about the basics of touch typing. I think it will be very beneficial for you when your speed is at the 40 WPM point. Here is the link to the article – ARTICLE BASICS OF TOUCH TYPING

Is typing 50 WPM good?

We are slowly getting out of the low-speed values. Not we get into the 50 WPM region.

Is it a good region? Can you be happy with the results of your practice when you hit those speeds? Is 50 WPM even good?

Typing at the speed of 50 WPM is definitely a speed that’s better than average (40 WPM). You already type faster than most of the people on the planet. That is something you can be happy with. It is a good typing speed. Still, you need to know – there is a lot of room for further improvement.

Typing at 50 WPM is the speed that you can be happy with. Especially if you type at this speed with the right technique and without looking at your keyboard.

But if you need help with not looking at your keyboard I recommend you my other article. I talk in it about blind typing. It is about typing without looking at your keyboard.

There are some very good and practical tips that I give you there to type without looking. You can read it here – ARTICLE TYPING WITHOUT LOOKING AT YOUR KEYBOARD

Is typing 60 WPM good?

Now we are getting too good speeds. The speed that’s 60 WPM and higher is something that’s fast.

Although it is definitely not the limit of the speed, it is a fast way to type and the effective way.

Typing at the speed of 60 WPM is definitely a really good typing speed. This is a speed that’s 1.5 times faster than the average speed of typing. This speed lets you type 1800 words every half of an hour. It is an accomplishment you can very well be proud of.

It is a really solid speed that lets you type at a very good rate. Especially if this is your average typing speed.

If it is so, you type in a speed that is fast and consistent.

Is typing 70 WPM good?

We are slowly getting to impressive speeds. The start to this region is a 70 WPM mark.

Is it a good typing speed? You can already tell that this is fast speed. Especially if you ever tried taking a test to see your typing speed. If not, I tell you that 70 WPM is fast.

Typing at the speed of 70 WPM is a good typing speed. It is fast to type at 70 WPM. It means that you can type 2100 words every half of an hour. When you type at 70 WPM on average you should be happy about your typing skill. Although there is still a place for improvement.

Typing at 70 WPM is great. But that’s for sure not the limit. You can improve your typing speed and you can get even faster.

Is typing at 80 WPM good?

Once you hit 80 WPM you should feel good about your skill level. It’s harder than it seems to get through this speed mark. Many people get stuck in the 60s and 70s. If you get through them you’re already on the path to faster speeds.

Typing at the speed of 80 WPM is both impressive and effective. With such speed, you can get type way more in the same amount of time. Of course, this is only viable for people whose jobs require typing, for example, software engineers or book writers.

Is typing at 90 WPM good?

Hitting 90 WPM is an accomplishment often overlooked. You’re so close to the 100 WPM that you don’t even care about the 90 WPM you’ve just hit.

Just take a moment to appreciate it. 90 WPM is a great speed that is hard to achieve.

Typing at the speed of 90 WPM is a great step. Most people don’t take the time to appreciate this achievement. Don’t rush into getting this 100 WPM so much and be happy with your current skill level. There aren’t many people who can type at 90 WPM.

Is typing at 100 WPM and above good?

If you finally achieve this 100+ WPM speed you’ve dreamed of you’ll know how it feels. This is an amazing accomplishment. From now on you don’t really care about how fast you’re typing. You’ve hit the 100 WPM mark!

Reaching a typing speed of 100 WPM is a great achievement. This is the most important barrier to break for most people. But don’t get discouraged from improving further. You can still type faster and have fun learning to do so.

Remember to have fun, whether you’ve hit 100 WPM already or not. Learning touch typing shouldn’t be a horrible chore just to get this magical number. If it takes you a bit longer, so be it.

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