With Google’s own default keyboard offering a swipe-typing option, you might think that SwiftKey would be redundant. You’d be wrong. For starters, its Flow swipe-typing system is a cut above, even enabling you to input multi-world phrases without lifting your finger, so long as you slide down to the space bar between words. SwiftKey is particularly good at predicting what you’re trying to type – and auto-correcting mistakes – since it learns from your previous input, including within text messages, so it improves over time. If you use the SwiftKey Cloud option to link it to your Google and social accounts, such as Facebook and Twitter, it learns even faster. Your personalised predictions are also backed up to the cloud.
Another major plus point is the phenomenal language support, offering next-word prediction in over 60 tongues. Unlike most multilingual keyboards, you don’t even need to switch manually between them: simply type away and it works out which of the (up to three) enabled languages you want. We found this particularly handy when using the language-learning app Duolingo.
As well as choosing from a number of free, colourful keyboard themes, with extra ones available via the in-app store, there’s great scope for customising the keyboard layout, size and positioning (you can undock and split it). An extended layout squeezes in cursor keys, which we found very useful for editing text. For those who need to enter a lot of numbers, a numeric row can be added to the top, while a number pad is available in the symbols view and can also be placed in the middle of the landscape thumb layout.
So everyone should be able to find a layout to suit. There’s also a voice input key (using Google Voice) and a selection of over 800 emoji – it even offers emoji prediction!