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JonBOY26

My 'Swiftkey on iOS' experience so far

Question

I've used Swiftkey on Android from almost two years and still love it. I recently jumped from Android to an iPhone 6, and unfortunately Swiftkey on iOS is not the excellent experience that it is on Android, yet.  

 
To improve Swiftly on iOS I'd like to see the below issues addressed, if possible:
 
(i) press and hold for alternative keys, such as numbers and symbols. Not being able to press and hold to rapidly insert numbers and symbols is extremely annoying! This feature is actually possible in iOS as Swype keyboard has it, so it baffles me as to why this functionality is integral to Swiftkey on Android but has been committed from Swiftkey for iOS. It's part of what makes Swiftkey on Android great, so it should definitely be included for iOS. 
 
(ii) the absence of a comma key is killing me! On Android the comma key is conveniently located to the left of the space bar, but much to my dismay on iOS it is a secondary key that requires a long press, despite being a frequently used punctuation character. Please return the comma to the left of the space bar! Or if there's not enough room to return it to the left of the space bar, instead of having a full stop (period) being the default key with comma reached by pressing and holding, please switch these around so that comma is the default function. A full stop can easily be inserted at any point with a simple double space, so it doesn't make sense to have the comma hidden as a secondary function (behind a full stop) given that the full stop can be easily inserted with a double space anyway. 
 
(iii) when I do insert a comma (by inconveniently pressing and holding the full stop key), Swiftkey doesn't automatically insert a space after the comma. Why is this? There are no instances in the English language where a comma isn't followed by a space. As such inserting a comma should automatically insert the comma and a space, ready to begin the next word, as per the way comma insertion works on Swiftkey for Android. 
 
(iv) the size of the keys is too small! I realise the size of keyboard is dictated by the size of devices screen, but on Android the keyboard is designed such that the individual keys are a large as possible with only minimal space between keys. On iOS however the keys are needlessly small with wasted space separating the keys. Please make the individual keys bigger to utilise this wasted space. Upon making the keys bigger it will then also be possible to have alternative symbols displayed on each key to be accessed by press and hold, as per Swiftkey on Android. 
 
(v) combine the '123' key and the globe key. If numbers and symbols were able to be accessed as secondary functions, as per Android, people would rarely need to press the '123' key. Therefore, the globe key could be moved to the bottom left corner, and the secondary function (press + hold) on this key could access '123'. This would allow the comma key to be returned to the left of the space bar (currently occupied by the globe key), where it is sorely missed. 
 
Basically Swiftkey on Android is close to perfect, yet for some reason Swiftkey on iOS has deviated from this excellent design. As somebody that has used Swiftkey on both operating systems I can tell you that the changes introduced to Swiftkey for iOS are definitely NOT good. To improve Swiftkey for iOS every effort should be made to exactly replicate Swiftkey as it is on Android. I realise that some of the changes may have been introduced to comply with Apple's rules for developing apps for iOS, however wherever possible please stick to the design and functionality that has already proven itself on Android. 
 
Please keep developing Swiftkey for iOS, because whilst it is indeed preferential to the stock Apple keyboard, it is still a long way from being the excellent Swiftkey keyboard that it has the potential to be. The fact that I knew I could now get Swiftkey on iOS played a huge role in my decision to return to an iPhone, so to find that Swiftkey on iOS isn't as great as it could be is very disappointing.    
 
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34 answers to this question

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Not a separate app though. More of a premium features pay to unlock. Kinda like 1Password does. Fully functional for free but an in app purchase to unlock even more if those extra features are important to you.

**edit**

I've just discovered Fleksy keyboard has a theme that's light/dark adaptable. Much like the stock keyboard. This shows it is definitely possible. God, i hope SwiftKey eventually creates a theme like this. It will be perfect then. SwiftKey is better than Fleksy in almost every other way. Much easier to type on. But Fleksy managed to nail this one which is what I was originally looking for with SwiftKey.

Don't worry, I shan't be jumping ship. Fleksy is way too awkward and clunky for me.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I agree for (iii), space after punctuation are welcome.

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@Prad,

 

I've seen several posts regarding this long-press issue for numbers. In 2014 the rationale for its absence was how new custom keyboards were to iOS. I've recently moved from Android back to iOS, and I'm so bummed at the lack of Swiftkey functionality. I found touchpal, and while it has some of the features I miss from Android Swiftkey, it doesn't really compare. The text prediction sucks. The undoing autocorrect sucks.

I long for my old Swiftkey. When (if ever), will we get long-press for numbers and special characters (the capability is obviously there given the functionality for foreign character vowels).

 

Thanks,
Chris

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On 11/1/2016 at 3:02 PM, eAlchemist said:

@Prad,

 

I've seen several posts regarding this long-press issue for numbers. In 2014 the rationale for its absence was how new custom keyboards were to iOS. I've recently moved from Android back to iOS, and I'm so bummed at the lack of Swiftkey functionality. I found touchpal, and while it has some of the features I miss from Android Swiftkey, it doesn't really compare. The text prediction sucks. The undoing autocorrect sucks.

I long for my old Swiftkey. When (if ever), will we get long-press for numbers and special characters (the capability is obviously there given the functionality for foreign character vowels).

 

Thanks,
Chris

 

I understand your frustration with lack of features. We are still committed to working on our iOS app. I sadly cannot mention anything on the road map, but we have been keeping track of things people are asking for. 

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I found this to be equally, if not more so, frustrating. I'm a 1st time iPhone user. I'd often razzed iPhone users in the past for not using SwiftKey. The long press numbers and accents were right there, as well as directional keys. 

 

Now I know why, and I'm forced to keep searching crappy alternatives. 

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On 11/7/2016 at 11:40 PM, Prad said:

 

I understand your frustration with lack of features. We are still committed to working on our iOS app. I sadly cannot mention anything on the road map, but we have been keeping track of things people are asking for. 

 

I think one of the things that is frustrating people is the time it seems to be taking to move forward.

From what I've seen and experienced, there seems to be little difference in the App from what was available two years ago?

 

Having been a long time Android user, I discovered  "Swype" a few years ago and thought it was the best thing since sliced bread, texting wise and then Swiftkey came along and blew the whole game apart for me and I went mad recommending it to others (and still do) and it was always one of the first things that I downloaded when changing phones..

Being a one finger texting person, like many of my generation, Swiftkey's ability to predict and remember and learn words and speed up the overall texting experience massively, was a Godsend.

 

Several of my friends with iPhones would tease me and ask why I didn't switch to iOS and I always gave Swiftkey as the primary reason, even though I knew that I'd be better off in so many ways, such as syncing with iTunes, playing the phone directly through the Car Stereo etc. etc. but I couldn't be doing with the clunky, stock iOS Keyboard and all those Upper Case letters, which didn't turn into lower case after the beginning of a sentence! :D

 

However, when I learned that Apple had finally relented and "allowed" 3rd Party Keyboards (about bleeding time!) I took the plunge and bought an iPhone 6 and yes, Swiftkey, once installed was, and is still, IMO, miles ahead of the stock texting keyboard..

 

Nevertheless, I gave up on the iPhone for a number of reasons and went back to Android and the Swiftkey experience was like saying hello to a long lost and much loved friend..particularly on the bigger screen of a 5.5" phone, where not only did I have the wonderful and, more importantly, time saving long press options, but I could adjust the keyboard size and all of these things, once more, made texting a pleasurable experience.

 

However, due to all sorts of compatibility reasons, I've chosen to come back to iOS and, of course, I'm using Swiftkey, but on the smaller screen of the iPhone 6s it's not nearly as pleasant as on Android.

 

For me, the obvious things that need sorting are:

1. The number row.

2. Long press alternative key options.

3. Being able to resize the keyboard.

 

I'm not sure I buy the reasons/excuses why this has not come about.

I'm struggling to believe that it's really that difficult! :D

It's been 2 years +?

Other (lesser) keyboard Apps such as Swype Touchpal and even Blink have come close to sorting, some, if not all of the above, although they all have their obvious flaws.

 

Yet, Swiftkey remains, IMO, the best of a pretty average bunch, all of which are, again, IMO, way better than the iOS keyboard..

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On 11/7/2016 at 11:40 PM, Prad said:  

I understand your frustration with lack of features. We are still committed to working on our iOS app. I sadly cannot mention anything on the road map, but we have been keeping track of things people are asking for. 

 

I think one of the things that is frustrating people is the time it seems to be taking to move forward.

From what I've seen and experienced, there seems to be little difference in the App from what was available two years ago?

 

Having been a long time Android user, I discovered  "Swype" a few years ago and thought it was the best thing since sliced bread, texting wise and then Swiftkey came along and blew the whole game apart for me and I went mad recommending it to others (and still do) and it was always one of the first things that I downloaded when changing phones..

Being a one finger texting person, like many of my generation, Swiftkey's ability to predict and remember and learn words and speed up the overall texting experience massively, was a Godsend.

 

Several of my friends with iPhones would tease me and ask why I didn't switch to iOS and I always gave Swiftkey as the primary reason, even though I knew that I'd be better off in so many ways, such as syncing with iTunes, playing the phone directly through the Car Stereo etc. etc. but I couldn't be doing with the clunky, stock iOS Keyboard and all those Upper Case letters, which didn't turn into lower case after the beginning of a sentence! 

 

However, when I learned that Apple had finally relented and "allowed" 3rd Party Keyboards (about bleeding time!) I took the plunge and bought an iPhone 6 and yes, Swiftkey, once installed was, and is still, IMO, miles ahead of the stock texting keyboard..

 

Nevertheless, I gave up on the iPhone for a number of reasons and went back to Android and the Swiftkey experience was like saying hello to a long lost and much loved friend..particularly on the bigger screen of a 5.5" phone, where not only did I have the wonderful and, more importantly, time saving long press options, but I could adjust the keyboard size and all of these things, once more, made texting a pleasurable experience.

 

However, due to all sorts of compatibility reasons, I've chosen to come back to iOS and, of course, I'm using Swiftkey, but on the smaller screen of the iPhone 6s it's not nearly as pleasant as on Android.

 

For me, the obvious things that need sorting are:

1. The number row.

2. Long press alternative key options.

3. Being able to resize the keyboard.

 

I'm not sure I buy the reasons/excuses why this has not come about.

I'm struggling to believe that it's really that difficult! 

It's been 2 years +?

Other (lesser) keyboard Apps such as Swype Touchpal and even Blink have come close to sorting, some, if not all of the above, although they all have their obvious flaws.

 

Yet, Swiftkey remains, IMO, the best of a pretty average bunch, all of which are, again, IMO, way better than the iOS keyboard..

SwiftKey on iOS has come a long way since iOS 8. I've been using since it was first offered in the App Store. Some of the features it lacks are limitations by Apple. But overall, it's gotten much better.

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Those are all 100% valid reasons. It's not about things being difficult. I can't really say anything that is going to make anyone happy. But we do have some plans in place though. 

 

In the meantime we can only hope that Apple also improved on their *still* very poor keyboard integration. By saying that, I'm not putting blame on Apple, but the way that keyboards can work in Android is leaps and bounds ahead of iOS. 

 

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Those are all 100% valid reasons. It's not about things being difficult. I can't really say anything that is going to make anyone happy. But we do have some plans in place though. 

 

In the meantime we can only hope that Apple also improved on their *still* very poor keyboard integration. By saying that, I'm not putting blame on Apple, but the way that keyboards can work in Android is leaps and bounds ahead of iOS. 

 

And I can't help but wonder why that is? Security issues maybe? They're big on security. It's not like they don't have the money to do it.

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