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Want to speed up your typing on your smartphone? Here's how

We use it all the time, but there are ways of speeding up the process.

WE DO SO much of our communication through our smartphones, the keyboard hasn’t changed all that much.

While we’ve become better at typing out on smaller screens, there are ways to help speed things up a little. Some you may already know, some you might not have taken advantage of yet, but here are a few ways to make typing a little easier.

Bring up additional characters 

An easy one to remember, instead of changing keyboard layout, holding down on a specific key will bring up additional characters for you to use. Depending on the type of keyboard you’re using, this will either bring up different characters of the same letter or punctuation.

Screenshot_2015-03-28-10-53-05 Swiftkey Swiftkey

Create text shortcuts 

Another thing that is often ignored, you can create shortcuts based on words you type. If you want, you can create an acronym allowing you to write words faster. How useful this is will depend on how often you write said phrases but you can find it in settings.

Screenshot_2015-03-28-10-49-24 Android Android

Take advantage of third-party keyboards 

If you’re relying solely on traditional keyboards, then you’re missing out on Not only do they bring features like swipe-to-type (allowing you to draw a line as a way of spelling words) combined with autocorrect, but there are specialised keyboards which teach you words, and there’s one that only speaks in quick acronyms.

Screenshot_2015-03-28-10-48-37 Almost all keyboards now include swipe-to-type now. Android Android

Two of the best third-party keyboards out there are Swype and Swiftkey. Which one you go for is a matter of preference (Swype is more accurate with swipe gestures while Swiftkey is more versatile), but which one you go for is up to you.

Don’t just type in portrait mode 

The majority of apps allow you to bring the keyboard into landscape mode. This is useful as it means you can use both your thumbs to type instead of pecking the keyboard.

The factors to take into consideration would be screen size (if it’s too big for you to cover the keyboard adequately, then it might not be worth it) and whether you’re using another method like swipe typing, which is easier in portrait mode.

Take advantage of voice-to-text

It’s cheating a little, but voice recognition has improved significantly in recent times. If you’re in a relatively quiet area, just fire it up and say your message. This is more useful if you’re sending a longer message.

The only caveat is you have to speak slowly and clearly to ensure it picks up what you’re saying, but you will need to check it just to make sure you don’t send anything odd. It’s good, but it’s not perfect.

Screenshot_2015-03-28-10-53-18 Android Android

Read: Autoplay video on YouTube bothering you? You can disable it >

Read: Don’t want sites tracking your activity? Here’s how you can ask them to stop >

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