10 Alternative iOS Keyboard Apps for Your iPhone
10 Alternative iOS Keyboard Apps for Your iPhone
Microsoft's Word Flow is just one of a number of appealing keyboard apps for iOS. We look at 10 that are worth a look for iPhone users.
Microsoft Makes a Move With Word Flow
Microsoft's Word Flow is the latest entrant into the third-party iOS keyboard market. The free app, which launched on April 25, has a one-handed mode that displays a QWERTY keyboard in an arc on the bottom-right side of the screen. In addition, users can customize backgrounds and allow access to their contacts, so Word Flow can accurately predict a person's name to reduce typing time. For those who don't want Arc mode turned on, users can use the keyboard in standard landscape mode.
SwiftKey Impressed Even Microsoft
SwiftKey has long been a favorite of third-party iOS keyboard users, which probably was a major factor in Microsoft's decision to acquire the company earlier this year. Since then, SwiftKey has lived on as an alternative keyboard. The app has a smart feature that predicts what the user is about to type. In also has an auto-correct feature that Microsoft says is "smarter" than the one offered in iOS. Plus, users will find full emoji support and the ability to switch from one language to another while typing. It's a free app.
No Tapping With Swype
Swype is one of the few paid apps in this roundup, costing 99 cents. For that price, however, users will get a different kind of typing experience. In fact, users won't type at all; they'll swipe. With Swype, users slide their fingers around the keyboard to different keys. Once complete, the app intelligently determines which words users are trying to send and inputs them into the text field. Swype argues its technology is superior to traditional typing, but users seem split: It has a cumulative rating of three stars out of a possible five in the App Store.
Fleksy Lets Users Roll Their Own Keyboards
Fleksy is designed solely with customization in mind. The app allows users to create their own keyboards and even includes a GIF mode that replaces traditional keys with GIFs a user has found on the Internet. In addition, users can change keys to different colors, determine how auto-corrected words should be displayed and much more. Fleksy is available as a free download.
RainbowKey Makes Text Look Cool
RainbowKey is another keyboard that's all about customization. In fact, users can change the color of keys and the keyboard background, as well as the kinds of emojis they use. Better yet, the free app offers a wide range of "stylish fonts," so if users don't want the same old text, it'll deliver something a little different.
Relive the Old Days With Hanx Writer
Hanx Writer is a neat, free app that goes back to the old days of typewriters. The app displays a keyboard that looks like a traditional typewriter. The text-input field, meanwhile, looks like a piece of paper that a user is typing on. The app is more about design than extra functionality, but it's interesting and was backed by famed actor Tom Hanks.
A Different Way to Communicate With Adaptxt
Adaptxt is one of the more capable free keyboards in this roundup, offering users a selection of more than 800 emojis. In addition, users can simply swipe on the bottom of the keyboard to communicate in more than 100 languages. Adaptxt also includes location suggestions and support for gestures. With gestures, users can, say, swipe diagonally from left to right, and the app, knowing it's a gesture, will deliver all of the text assigned to it. Think of the gesture support as a quick way to get a lot of text into an input field by simply swiping in one direction or another.
Minuum Goes Minimalist
Minuum is designed to be short and slim, so users can easily type out messages with one hand. In addition, users can choose different color schemes, and the app supports gestures and a dictionary function. Plus, it is capable of learning as the person types, so its auto-correct feature gets better over time. Unlike most of the apps in this roundup, however, Minuum is a bit expensive: It costs $3.99.
Custom Keyboard Gives Users Lots of Options
The free Custom Keyboard is all about a user's personal preference. The app allows users to choose from a wide range of fonts and colors, so the keyboard looks nothing like the standard iOS version. Users can even choose key styles, so they can decide whether keys should be oval, square, rectangular or another shape. Perhaps most interestingly, the app supports several different sound effects and will play a sound when different keys are selected.
It's All About Fun With TouchPal Keyboard
TouchPal Keyboard is focused solely on fun. The app comes with several themes that range from holiday-related styles to even some that look like early "Super Mario" games. The free app also boasts sound effects, the ability to create artistic arrays of emojis and swipe support. It's one of the more popular keyboards in this roundup, earning a four-star rating from nearly 3,400 App Store reviewers.