How to Change the Keyboard on Your Android Device for a Better Typing Experience

Are you frustrated with the default keyboard on your Android device? You‘re not alone. Many users ditch the pre-installed option for a better typing experience. Customizing your keyboard can optimize everything from typing accuracy to emoji access.

In this expert guide, you‘ll learn how to change your Android keyboard in just 7 quick steps. We‘ll also explore popular keyboard alternatives, the benefit of switching between various keyboards, and expert management tips. Let‘s dive in!

Why Bother Switching Your Keyboard?

Over 30% of Android users install a third-party keyboard app according to recent surveys. And for good reason! The right keyboard makes typing on mobile devices easier, faster and more personalized.

Most people switch because the default keyboard:

  • Fails to provide accurate autocorrect, predictions and corrections
  • Lacks efficiency features like customizable shortcuts, swipe input and macro support
  • Doesn‘t offer enough customizations to the layout, size, sounds or color schemes
  • Falls short in the emoji department

Luckily, Android offers thousands of excellent keyboard apps to fix these common frustrations.

Step 1: Choosing Your New Keyboard App

With endless keyboard options on the Play Store, deciding where to start can be tricky. Let‘s compare the top contenders so you can pick the best one for YOUR needs:

Keyboard OptionKey FeaturesStrengthsConsiderations
GboardVoice dictation, GIF search, glide typingGoogle technology provides great predictionsCan seem cluttered
SwiftKeyTop accuracy, multiple language support, themesExcellent for multilingual typistsInitially uses lot of device resources
GrammarlyChecks grammar, tone improvements for writingFantastic for composing professional emailsNot as useful for casual texts
TouchPal100+ themes, emoji bar, cursor controlHighly customizable appearanceContains more ads than rivals
FleksyGestures, extensions, privacy focusLightning fast once learnedTricky gesture system has a learning curve

As you can see, certain keyboards excel in different areas. Fleksy may be the fastest option once you master their unique gestures, while SwiftKey offers superior accuracy.

Think about your primary keyboard activities. Do you mostly type casual texts to friends or write longer work emails? How many languages do you regularly utilize? What about one-handed typing needs? Consider factors like these when deciding on the best match.

Downloading and installing any keyboard app functions just like getting a regular app. Simply tap Install > Open once it finishes.

Step 2: Enabling Your Chosen Keyboard

After opening your new keyboard for the first time, Android will prompt you to grant various permissions. This allows full functionality for features that rely on viewing what you type.

As Google Support explains, broad permissions access "helps features like next-word suggestions, automatic punctuation, and spelling check work smoothly".

Without permission to track your typed data and writing patterns, your keyboard would lack the context to make smart suggestions tailored to you.

Rest assured that reputable keyboard companies never sell or share your private typing activity. They utilize permissions purely to improve the keyboard itself via features like ever-improving personalized predictions.

Once you accept permissions, your new keyboard will operate as expected for an optimal experience.

Step 3: Making Your New Keyboard the Default

Now for the best part: making your keyboard the default for all text interactions across your device.

Navigate to Settings > System > Languages & Input > Virtual Keyboard (steps may vary slightly by Android version). Next:

  1. Tap Manage Keyboards
  2. Locate your newly installed keyboard app
  3. Toggle to enable
  4. Finally, choose it as your Default Keyboard

Exit settings and open any app with text entry to begin using your replacement keyboard.

Expect an initial learning curve as you adjust to a new layout and features. Don‘t get discouraged if your typing slows down at first – with regular use, your words per minute will quickly rebound and likely exceed your previous speed.

Step 4: Switching Between Multiple Keyboards

One major advantage of Android over Apple? You can install unlimited keyboard apps and seamlessly switch as needed.

Per Android Authority, over 40% of Android users have multiple keyboard apps installed. Why switch instead of sticking to just one?

Certain keyboards excel for specific use cases. For work, a sophisticated grammar checker like Grammably boosts professionalism. For social media fun, a meme-friendly keyboard makes adding stickers and GIFs effortless. Other situations may benefit from an accessibility-focused voice typing keyboard.

Switching on the fly is easy:

  1. Within any keyboard, tap the minimize icon
  2. Select your next preferred keyboard
  3. The new option instantly appears across your device

Give it a shot now by downloading two completely different keyboards. Switch between them in different messaging apps to experience the advantages first-hand.

Expert Tips for Managing Your Keyboards

Hopefully you now feel empowered to customize your Android typing experience via new keyboard apps. Here are a few expert pointers as you venture down the keyboard customization road:

  • Don‘t hesitate to ditch keyboards that remain inefficient after a few days of use – a frustrating keyboard will only hamper your experience
  • Backup essential data before testing new keyboards in case of conflicts
  • Use Google Play Reviews and keyboard trial periods to rigorously compare options
  • Manage permissions closely – while highly reputable keyboards don‘t misuse data, always verify what access each has
  • Switch between specialized keyboards rather than overloading a single app with too many customizations

The right keyboard strikes the ideal balance of speed, accuracy, customization and user experience for YOUR needs. With the power to install unlimited options, find your perfect match then tweak to perfection.

Ready to transform how you type on Android? Grab your new keyboard and master mobile messaging! Just follow the simple steps in this guide first for smooth sailing. Here‘s to mobile typing bliss!

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