Recently, Google produces a new software keyboard for iPhone and offers three powerful features that you don’t get with Apple’s built-in keyboard.
The big feature of Google Keyboard for iPhone is a Google logo right next to the auto-complete suggestions. Tap it to open a Google search box, right there on your screen.
On the screen, you can perform Google searches—for restaurants, addresses, articles, definitions, flight information…anything. That comes in handy really often. With each search, you save yourself some flipping around into your browser or another app to find the information you need.
The Google company says emphatically that your search terms are the only bits of data that get sent to Google; the keyboard doesn’t send or collect any other information.
Whatever you believe or not, there are two huge disappointments to this feature on Google Keyboard.Disappointment NO.1
: When you conduct a search of the Web, the results appear as scrolling, attractive tiles at the bottom of the screen. So how do you insert one of these results into whatever you’re typing?
If you tap it, you insert only a link to a Google search for that information—not the information itself:
You’re forcing your recipients to open their browsers and, of course, do a Google search, rather than just showing the information you’re seeing in the results.
Tapping a results tile also produces a message that you’ve copied that link. Alternatively, then, you can tap a second time (in your text, to produce iOS’s command bar), and a third time, on the Paste button, to paste in the entire tile.
In other words, one tap doesn’t insert the search result, and three taps is too many.Second Feature is Searchable emoji
Typing and emoji aren’t the only tools in the young person’s expression toolkit these days. There are also reaction GIFs—very short, funny, soundless video loops (often from a movie or TV show) that perfectly expresses your feeling.
The Google keyboard makes it super easy to find those, and somewhat easy to insert them into your typing. (Once again, it takes three taps.)The Third feature is Swiping typing
The Google keyboard also lets you swipe to type. That method of entering text, offered by Swype, SwiftKey, and many other alternative keyboards, involves sliding your finger from letter to letter. Somehow, the keyboard’s built-in intelligence figures out which word you must have meant. Because your letter aim can be super sloppy, and even your spelling can be a little iffy, swipe-typing fans swear that this technique is faster and more accurate than tap-typing.
On the Google keyboard, swipe-typing works fantastically. You just have to learn to trust it, plowing along blindly without stopping to check every word. (For a doubled letter, you can simply omit the second occurrence. Drag across Z, O, M to get the word “zoom,” for example.)In conclusion
You really wish that your search results were easier to slap into your typing. You ache to have a dictation button. You mutter every time you manually remove the space before an apostrophe-s. Google keyboard can offer all you need.