Typing is probably in the top two things you do the most on your phone (the other being reading). With our lives being surrounded by chat apps like WhatsApp, Messenger, Slack and the always present email, we end up typing a lot. But we don’t really think about it (just like we don’t think about the mattress we sleep on or the chair we work on, even though it’s a significant part of our life).
But you should start caring about the keyboard. Because switching to a keyboard that’s more customised to your needs can lead to immense gains in time saved and productivity increase.
We’ve listed the top 5 Android keyboard apps here. You’ll probably find your next favorite keyboard app here.
Let’s start with the obvious. The best keyboard app on Android, by far, is the one that Google makes. It is stable, fast and has a really intuitive gesture typing and auto-correct system.
All of that was great in itself. Then Google went ahead and brought all awesome features from the Gboard iOS app to Android. You now have access to Google search, GIF search and emoji suggestions right in the keyboard. This is so helpful.
The default alternative to the default keyboard is Swifkey, always has been. And if you use something like the OnePlus 3, you’ll know that it’s the default keyboard app. And for good reason. Swiftkey is just really good.
When it comes to things like auto-complete, multiple languages, gesture typing, Swiftkey just does it well.
Plus, if you like customizing, you’ll really like Swiftly. Not only can you switch between themes, but you can customize a lot of elements of the keyboard – reducing the key sizes and their look. You can add a separate number row on the top, or integrate it right in the first row of the keyboard.
The app comes with a selection of free themes but the fun begins in the app’s Theme store where you can buy some really cool themes. Once you’re signed in the app, you’ll be able to carry your personal auto correct settings between devices.
Fleksy is the keyboard that’s a bit out there. It’s innovative in ways that most mainstream keyboard apps just aren’t. If you want to be fast on your Android phone, and if you’re at a place where you can basically type without looking, give Fleksy a try.
It’s a gesture-based keyboard that’s designed to level up your typing performance.
Flesky was also the first mainstream keyboard to embrace plugins and extension. There’s GIF search integrated already but you can use extensions to customize the top row, add shortcuts and more.
Swype is the king of gesture typing. It’s a solid keyboard in itself but when it comes to swiping on the keyboard, it’s got Swiftkey and Gboard beat. It after all, is the app that introduced to the concept.
Swype is the app that lets you do basically everything using Swype. And does it so well. The predictions are on point and the app app even lets you do things like copying and pasting using gestures. The app has a free trial and the full app is only $0.99. The app also has a great theme library.
Download: Swype ($0.99)
Slash is the keyboard for the productivity obsessed. As a keyboard it’s adequate. But when you tap that slash button, everything essentially changes.
Slash’s pitch is similar to that of Gboard. Only thing is that pressing the G button would just give you a Google search bar. The Slash button gives you access to dozens of services, apps and actions, all without ever leaving your keyboard.
So you can do the obvious things like search for a GIF using the Slash keyboard. Or you can go all productivity ninja and search for Dropbox files, copy the link, and add tasks to Todoist, all from the keyboard.
If you’re someone who uses your Android phone to do work – if it’s just communication or management, Slash will end up saving you a lot of time.
Download: Slash Keyboard
All The Great Keyboards
Clearly, the Play Store has a lot more than 5 awesome keyboard apps. But this list is about the absolute top, mainstream apps.
What’s your favorite Android app that we didn’t talk about? Share with us in the comments below.