SwiftKey


'SwiftKey' Articles

SwiftKey Updates iOS App With New 'Toolbar' for Quicker Access to GIFs and More

iOS and Android keyboard app SwiftKey today announced its "biggest update" since the company was acquired by Microsoft in April of 2016. SwiftKey 7.0 includes a "Toolbar" designed to give users fast access to features that are both old and new. Found under a new "+" sign to the left of the prediction bar, Toolbar will give iOS users the ability to quickly add emoji, GIFs, and items copied from the Clipboard into their messages, as well as customize the keyboard's theme. For Android users, Toolbar will house a few additional features like stickers, collections, calendar, and quick settings. SwiftKey 7.0 also adds in eight new 'Lish' hybrid languages, in this case letting people shift between English and Indic languages. SwiftKey said that down the line it will launch location sharing for U.S. and India-based users, as well as Calendar sharing, so that you can insert addresses and appointments into messages. Third-party keyboards grew in popularity following the launch of iOS 8 in 2014, which introduced the ability for iPhones and iPads to support such keyboards on a systemwide basis. Companies like Fleksy have faced major changes in the ensuing years, and others -- like Swype -- have shut down completely. Along with SwiftKey, Google's Gboard is one of the other major third-party keyboards for iPhone. SwiftKey is available to download for free from the iOS App Store [Direct Link], and users should begin seeing the version 7.0 update rolling out

SwiftKey Update Brings Emoji Prediction, 'Oxygen' Themes, and More Languages

Microsoft today released an update for SwiftKey that includes a handful of new features including emoji prediction and enhancements to 3D Touch gestures. Users who tap on the emoji key will now see a new prediction panel that automatically suggests up to 18 relevant emoji depending on what they type, saving them the trouble of searching through the entire list. The update also includes eight new "Oxygen" themes adding up to a spectrum of vibrant colors for SwiftKey keyboards. The new hues can be found in the Design section of the app and include Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Light Blue, Blue, Purple, and Pink. In addition, Microsoft said it had made substantial improvements to the responsiveness of 3D Touch gestures in SwiftKey on supporting iPhones, including those that trigger cursor control and cursor movement. Haptic feedback has also been implemented for some keyboard actions, such as opening the emoji panel. Lastly, SwiftKey added support for 15 new languages including Egyptian Arabic, Tanglish, Bambara, Wolof, Mossi, Greenlandic, and Northern Sami. See here for the full list. SwiftKey is a free download for iPhone and iPad on the App Store. [Direct Link]

Small Number of SwiftKey Users Discover App Leaked Private Data to Strangers

A week after launching a new emoji-predicting keyboard, SwiftKey is now facing some pushback after a few users noticed that the main SwiftKey app was propagating suggestions related to the email accounts, phone numbers, and names of complete strangers (via The Telegraph). The Microsoft-owned app, available on iOS and Android, is widely known for its artificial intelligence and machine learning tools, which create custom word predictions based on what each user has previously typed. In order to fully take advantage of these features, SwiftKey accesses various personal bits of information -- previous texts, emails, and regularly used names and phrases -- to bolster its database, with a synchronization feature that keeps all of a user's data updated across various devices. Now, one SwiftKey user has discovered that someone unknown to them was given access to this data thanks to the app's predictive features. Thankfully, the stranger was helpful in informing the compromised user about their privacy slip. "A few days ago, I received an email from a complete stranger asking if I had recently purchased and returned a particular model of mobile phone, adding that not one but two of my email addresses (one personal and one work address) were saved on the phone she had just bought as brand-new," said the user. "It also suggested, when she typed a zero, the telephone number for someone I had phoned recently." According to the anonymous source, the stranger went through every letter in the alphabet and got predictive suggestions of the affected user's contact list and even the

SwiftKey Launches New Emoji-Predicting Keyboard App 'Swiftmoji'

Microsoft-owned keyboard app maker SwiftKey today launched a brand-new iOS app, this time focused on predictive emoji suggestions. Called Swiftmoji, the app runs a crowdsourced usage data algorithm to begin suggesting its users specific emoji characters when they send text messages, with the app set to eventually learn each user's preferences and recommend frequently-used emoji above those hardly ever sent in a message. Image via TechCrunch The app works by piggybacking on the written text created in Apple's -- or any other third-party's -- keyboard, showcasing a wall of emojis meant to be related to the message waiting to be sent. All users need to do is type something, tap the globe icon to switch over to Swiftmoji, and pick from the app's proposed emoji characters. SwiftKey hopes this method is a bit more streamlined in comparison to the emoji hunt that happens in Apple's first-party keyboard but, as TechCrunch noted, its predictive capabilities have room for improvement. Testing the app out ahead of launch, the predictions seemed a tad tenuous and/or hit and miss at times. For example, typing ‘viva la France’ did indeed yield the French flag emoji as the first prediction. However the second prediction was the Italian flag. Which it’s hard to imagine being useful. The app also lets users send an "emoji storm," which shoots out emojis from its suggestion box in a random order at the tail-end of a message, if users think sending just one or two characters isn't enough. In addition, there's a tab for frequently used emoji, and a basic, scrollable section akin to what