If you don’t like the stock Android keyboard you download one to replace it. Easy. But which one? Not so easy! Whilst there are dozens to choose from, the two leaders by a long way are SwiftKey and Swype. Both offering different methods of fast input – until now. SwiftKey is introducing the new Flow option, combining the two, and it’s coming to a beta tester near you.
An email has been sent to people who registered to be ‘Flow VIP Beta’ tester, it reads:
Thank you for registering your interest in SwiftKey Flow. We’re very pleased that so many of you are eager to help us test it out.
SwiftKey Flow is very nearly ready for beta testing. When it is, you’ll receive an email with instructions on how to download it and how to leave us feedback. Your comments are very important to us – you’ll be a vital part of making sure that the public release of SwiftKey with SwiftKey Flow is our best keyboard yet.
To make sure that you receive the SwiftKey Flow testing email and it doesn’t end up in your spam folder, please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your list of contacts.
In the meantime, why not nominate SwiftKey in the TechCrunch 2012 Crunchies? We’d love it if you could nominate us here http://bit.ly/skcrunchie and let your friends know.
All the best,
SwiftKey Community Manager
For those unfamiliar with the two apps, Swype lets you run your finger across the keyboard from one letter to another without taking it off until you’ve completed the word; drawing it out, if you like. Whereas SwiftKey uses the traditional way of typing, but learns your style and predicts the next word in the sentence. This video shows how SwiftKey has integrated them both in Flow:
Those of you who are lucky enough to be running Android Jelly Bean 4.2 will be familiar with this combined layout, as the latest Android stock keyboard does something similar, but I’ve found that it’s not as good as either of the third party replacements.
SwiftKey won’t be aiming at the Nexus early adopters with this though, they know the market is in providing good quality third party customisations to people on older or skinned versions of Android (of which there are millions).
It will be interesting to see how well SwiftKey has implemented the Swype (errrr… I mean Flow) functionality, and whether they’ve infringed on any patents!
Are you a SwiftKey Flow VIP beta tester? Let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.