We may have soon gotten used to typing on smartphone keyboards after moving away from the physical touchpads of old, but things aren't perfect yet. Smartphone keyboards are never fast enough, never autocorrect correctly and often lead to frustration. Do you relate to these problems? Then check out our list of the best Android keyboard apps for Android.
The Minuum keyboard isn’t your typical QWERTY keyboard. Although the positions of the letters are similar, the entire alphabet appears on the same line. This means that Minuum is one of the smallest Android keyboards, but it's also deceptively simple to use. While it may not be the fastest – and it's quite easy to make mistakes – Minuum is a great keyboard for those who want to be able to see more messages from their conversation on the screen while they type a reply.
Fleksy delivers a large keyboard and simple gestures to provide record-breaking typing speeds. With a swipe up or down you can correct words from a list of recommendations, while a back swipe will delete a word, and a swipe forward will add a period.
It's an efficient system, which makes Fleksy our top recommendation for fans of standard typing rather than swiping. There's also a surprisingly capable 'invisible' keyboard plugin, which is cool to show off to friends.
3. SwiftKey – the all-rounder (and best for multiple languages)
Possibly the most well-known keyboard app on the Google Play Store, SwiftKey has one of the finest typing interfaces available on Android. Like Swype, you can type in the traditional manner or use swiping (which SwiftKey calls 'flow'), and both methods function equally well.
There is a variety of size and layout options including an intriguing “thumb” mode which creates a space between the left and right half of the keyboard. In addition, SwiftKey is excellent at managing multiple languages and is one of the only keyboards on which you don't need to swap between them. Just choose the languages you want to use in the settings, and text prediction and special characters will work for all languages automatically. It's very clever.
Google's keyboard has a simple and clean interface that just works. Material design themes, a ton of languages, text-to-speech, gesture typing – it has a lot to offer. You can download this keyboard for free in the Play Store with no in-app purchases. It's compatible with devices running Android 4.4 and up, so there's no good reason not to give Google Keyboard a go.
TouchPal is heavily focused on emojis/emoji art/smileys/pictures, but it also features over 85 languages, swipe/glide functionality, cloud prediction and contextual prediction. Don't let its cutesy Play Store description and branding put you off, there is far more to TouchPal than colors and themes; it's a straight-up keyboard for messaging quickly and comfortably, and should easily make its way onto any best keyboard list.
Swype is a popular keyboard which employs the swipe (or glide) method for character input. Swype learns from your messaging habits, automatically updating its dictionary with new phrases that you type. It creates automatic spaces between words to speed up your workflow and adapts to common mistakes you make.
Though swiping is an acquired taste, if you want the best example of it, you should look no further than Swype.