Friday, May 8, 2015

The Best Keyboard for Android Smartphones

Androids, in my opinion, are the best type of smartphones to get into. The devices come in all sizes, designs, and prices. The majority of them come with giant screens for you to browse the internet or Skype with friends or play games if you're bored and want to pretend like you have something to do while the rest of your friends are busy on their phones. Sometimes it may seem like a challenge to type on phones with tiny screens, but for years Androids have let you customize your keyboards. You can get keyboards that let your trace out your words, keyboards with non-standard layouts, you can even shrink your keyboards down to tinier sizes, or make them easier for you to put all those emojis that you go out of control with.

One of the better keyboards for your Android device is the Google Keyboard. It has a smart auto-correct and word prediction, a great tap-typing response, and a tracing feature that allows you to trace out your words for quick texts. In addition to that, it also has a voice dictation that gets smarter with word predictions the more you use it. Having it recognize and know your voice is great for when you don't have a lot of time to type out those long texts, so you can just tell your Android device exactly what you want your text to say and it will type it out for you. You can also customize your settings for sounds, vibrations, ringtones, and how accurate your auto-correct can be. A lot of Android phones already come with the Google Keyboard preinstalled, but if you have a HTC, Samsung, LG, or any smartphone with a custom keyboard, you can get Google's version of a keyboard from the Play Store, for free. And who can turn down something that's free with so many cool features?

A lot of people also go with SwiftKey on Android. It has tracing, auto-correct, and a bunch of different themes to customize the appearance. The word prediction with SwiftKey is better than with the Google Keyboard. It can get into your social media accounts; Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, as well as your texts and contacts list, to learn how you type and can better predict your words before you even type a letter. Just like with the Google Keyboard, the more you use SwiftKey, the smarter it can get. One of SwiftKey's weaker points is tap-typing. It doesn't seem as responsive as Google's version but that shouldn't really effect you if you mainly use tracing or word prediction.

Some of the other types of keyboards you can get are Swype ($0.99), TouchPal (free), Flesky ($1.99), Ai.type ($3.99), or Whirlscape Minuum ($3.20). Swype is the original tracing keyboard and is almost always preinstalled on the majority of your smartphones. Just like Swype, TouchPal, Ai.typ also has tracing, multiple themes and emojis to chose from, and auto-correct. But the downsides of all these is that their word prediction isn't comparably smarter than with SwiftKey and tap-typing isn't nearly as good as with Google Keyboard.  Flesky is said to have the best auto-correct engine, it manages to write perfectly legible sentences without you even looking at your phone. Whirlscape Minuum has got to be one of the lower quality keyboards in my opinion. It has all the letters on your keyboard laid out in a single row and guesses at what letter you are attempting at hitting, based on context.

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All these keyboards have their own style and most of them have the same features. It's on you to decide what you feel most comfortable with when searching the web, texting your friends, playing games, or being addicted to your social media accounts. Not an Android user? Check out our post on The Best Keyboards for Apple Smartphones!

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