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iOS 8 Roundup: The best third-party keyboards to try out right now

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iOS 8 Roundup: The best third-party keyboards to try out right now


In iOS H, Apple is including help for third-get together keyboards. This signifies that iOS customers can lastly substitute the default inventory Apple keyboard with a myriad of decisions already obtainable on the App Store.

Keyboards are tied with an app. There shouldn't be a separate ‘keyboard retailer’. To discover a keyboard, you search within the iOS App Store like another app. Once you will have downloaded an app that incorporates a customized keyboard, it's essential to then allow it in Settings. Go to Settings -> General -> Keyboards -> Add New Keyboard and choose the brand new app. This is sort of annoying, because it forces each app to instruct you easy methods to set up their keyboard in case you're new to the idea.

With that out of the best way, what are the perfect keyboards obtainable for iOS H to obtain in the present day? Read on for 9to5Mac’s complete roundup.

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Swype — $0.99

Swype is the long-lasting customized keyboard. With unimaginable reputation on Android, as nicely being featured on stage at WWDC in June, Swype is trying to replicate its success on iPhone and iPad. In Swype, you drag your telephone between letters of the keyboard to spell phrases after which launch. Swype makes use of refined language fashions to find out what the consumer needed to sort. It additionally inserts an area after each phrase, to dramatically velocity up typing. There’s some intelligent tips too, like punctuation prediction: typing ‘How’s it going’ will recommend ‘?’ within the suggestion bar.

The workforce’s first model for iOS options the core app performance; updates will embrace connectivity options, extra themes and extra languages. I truly discovered Swype notably useful on iPad, when utilizing one-handed in portrait. Swiping is rather more environment friendly than searching-and-pecking on a big touchscreen.

SwiftKey — Free

screen-8 SwiftKey screenshot 1

On Android, SwiftKey and Swype battle for prime spot. I consider the identical battle will occur on iOS. SwiftKey and Swype have some overlap, with SwiftKey providing a ‘Flow’ mode for swipe-based mostly textual content enter which works nicely. SwiftKey give attention to their “extremely correct” subsequent phrase prediction, a greater model of Apple’s QuickType. Unlike Swype, SwiftKey has cloud connectivity to permit the app to supply higher predictions by analyzing info out of your Twitter account, Facebook or Gmail inbox. The community entry additionally permits SwiftKey to sync your personalizations throughout units on each iOS and Android.

The standout function of SwiftKey is that it helps writing in two languages directly. For instance, the prediction engine is sweet sufficient you can setup English and Spanish help concurrently and simply sort usually. The keyboard will recommend phrases for each languages seamlessly.

Minuum — $1.99

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Minuum’s headline function is that it will possibly shrink to a collapsed view, which saves display area by grouping keys into separate buttons. There can also be some swipe gestures to speedup primary operations. You can swipe left to delete phrases or swipe proper to insert an area. Although type of redundant on the massive A.S inch and H.H inch screens of the iPhone S and S Plus, Minuum’s compactness will attraction to iPhone 4S and iPhone H customers. Although it helps iPad, I see no purpose to decide on Minuum over a extra-normal format on such a canvas. Customization choices are restricted proper now, however the firm is teasing extra languages and new themes for future updates.

Fleksy — $0.99


Fleksy has existed on iOS for some time, however thus far it has been the duty of particular person builders so as to add Fleksy as an choice of their apps. With iOS H, Fleksy can grow to be a first-class citizen. Fleksy relaxes the must be correct with button faucets. The software program is designed to account for lots of inaccuracy. This is proven greatest by the very fact Fleksy doesn't draw separators between keys within the interface — they don’t assume they're vital. I discovered the accuracy to be spectacular.

Fleksy integrates emojis instantly, which is an enormous bonus. Like Minuum, it may also be shrunk right down to a smaller measurement. You also can cover the spacebar for a ‘minimal’ look. Swipe gestures allow fast punctuation and phrase deletes. Fleksy helps over forty languages and in addition comes with a choice of free and premium themes for some added aptitude. You also can change between various character layouts like DVORAK and AZERTY in case you are extra accustomed to these orders.

TouchPal — Free

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TouchPal makes use of an aesthetic that intently mirrors the default keyboard. I assume the thought is to supply some further options with out forcing customers to relearn habits they've constructed up with the inventory keyboard. It works to some extent, however breaks down when the extra delicate behaviors usually are not carried out precisely. TouchPal does supply some neat enhancements although, comparable to shortcuts for quantity and punctuation entry, an built-in view for getting into emojis and extra. Superscript inscriptions expose what lengthy-press shortcuts can be found.

KuaiBoard — $1.99

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KuaiBoard is fascinating. It has an enormous choice of preset textual content snippets to shortly insert into your doc. This spans e-mail signatures, canned e mail responses and extra. Another tab crawls your Address Book for contact info to insert, like names, addresses and telephone numbers. You can even shortly connect a Maps hyperlink of your present location, if pals need to know the place you're.

What’s good about KuaiBoard is that isn’t meant to switch your default keyboard. It is supposed for use in conjunction with a traditional QWERTY keyboard. This means its extra of a shortcut display than a full alternative. I prefer it. It means devoted keyboard makers can give attention to making keyboards, and the developer behind KuaiBoard can concentrate on including the supplementary options.

TextExpander — $4.99

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The TextExpander keyboard is exclusive. On the Mac, TextExpander permits customers to sort key phrases and have them mechanically reworked into longer phrases, helpful for when customers have to write down the identical factor many occasions over. On iOS, the sandbox mannequin means TextExpander can’t actually exist. With iOS H, the keyboards system means the TextExpander service might be transient throughout all apps, so long as you're utilizing TextExpander’s keyboard. That’s the tradeoff. If you aren’t already invested within the TextExpander ecosystem on the Mac, there isn't any purpose so that you can need to use this keyboard. However, having a syncing textual content-shortcut system could be very highly effective. Whether that is one thing that's value sacrificing for higher general textual content enter (keyboard improvement is just not Smile Software’s focus) is a troublesome name.


After a number of weeks of in depth testing with these keyboards, I am nonetheless not sure whether or not I will use these personally. The inventory keyboard is excellent (even higher in iOS H) and though swipe typing is beneficial, I’m unsure I’ll ever actually miss it. The lack of inline autocorrect throughout all of those keyboards is an enormous sacrifice.

That being stated, customized keyboards are large enterprise on Android. I’m positive the large gamers can be widespread on the iPhone too, like Swype, Fleksy and SwiftKey, nevertheless it’s simply not for me. A lot of this stems from the very fact I am already ingrained into the conduct of the inventory keyboard. I assume customized keyboards will particularly attraction to these switching from Android, who've already been utilizing these options for some time elsewhere. Let us know your ideas within the feedback!

Filed beneath: AAPL Company, iOS, iOS Devices Tagged: iOS 8, Keyboards, roundup

For extra details about AAPL Company, iOS Devices, and iOS proceed studying at 9to5Mac.

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