Siine lands £550,000, aims to change the way we type on touch-screen keyboards

Siine, a Spain/UK-based developer of software that aims to change the way we communicate using touch-screen phones and tablets, has raised £550,000 (roughly $880,000) in seed funding from Atomico Ventures, the investment vehicle established by Skype founders Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis.

The company says it has created unique systems that make it easier for people to type and transfer text via touch-screen devices, reducing the number of keystrokes required to use virtual, on-screen keyboards. That pitch, of course, sounds eerily similar to Swype‘s.

The company’s taking a different route, though, building on research in linguistics and communications to create a graphical UI where users tap on suggested symbols to convey their meaning instead of having to type individual letters.

I’ve briefly seen the software, which is currently in alpha testing stage, in action at the Le Web conference last December, and have to admit I was very intrigued. I’m due to learn more about Siine at next week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

From what I can gather, Siine will launch its software for the Android platform first, this quarter, and is already working with users of the Galaxy Tab, Galaxy S and HTC Desire.

The startup, based in Barcelona and London, was founded in 2007 by Ed Maklouf, who studied Group Communications at Stanford University and went on to develop games, music, and voting technologies.

Local angel investors, including former FC Barcelona VP Marc Ingla, had earlier pumped an undisclosed amount of capital into Siine (pronounced ‘sign’).