A screenshot for an unannounced SwiftKey product suggests this once Android-only keyboard will be making its way to iOS.
In the Android world, SwiftKey has built a reputation by serving up one of the best alternative keyboards around. It started with great word prediction, and then phrase prediction, auto-correction, sentence prediction, themes, context-aware prediction, Flow, and most recently cloud syncing. It offers a rich typing experience beyond nearly any other keyboard on the Google Play store, but despite its huge following and global user base, there’s still one market it’s been unable to crack: iOS.
The open nature of Android welcomes developers who want to tweak, change or modify the stock experience and indeed every smartphone outside of Google’s own Nexus family boasts some form of diversion from vanilla Android. Meanwhile the world of iOS is under a far firmer grip.
Apple’s control of, not only its App Store, but also the access developers are granted to features and functions of the underlying operating system differs dramatically to Google’s take on things. Alternative keyboards are all but non-existent in the world of iOS, save for a handful of app, but despite this, it looks as though SwiftKey may be trying to find some small way in through a new app called SwiftKey Note.
GSM Arena spotted a tweet from the ever-present source of leaked mobile content that is the @evleaks Twitter feed, which posted what appears to be a promotional image showcasing and app claiming to be SwiftKey Note.
Whilst the UI of the app is sparse, save for a keyboard in the style of iOS 7, albeit with thicker font, an area for text entry, predicted words and additional buttons for sharing tagging, there isn’t much available to test the theory that SwiftKey actually intends to bring the app to market.
The SwiftKey experience on iOS would have to differ dramatically from its Android-based counterpart in that users would only be able to enjoy the predictive prowess of the SwiftKey engine while using the SwiftKey Note app. Presumably, should you wish to use the app, you’d have to write your text and then copy or share it out to the application of your choosing. Far from ideal and a sticking point that will no doubt prevent users from adopting the app in a full time capacity.
With Mobile World Congress looming, this mysterious app may service as a solid product, but its success will take time to measure.
Update 25/1/14: @evleaks is at it again and has tweeted yet another official looking image (see above) of the SwiftKey Note app, this time running on both an iPhone 5S and an iPad Air. Seeing the app on a larger display clears up any ambiguity surrounding the iconography we previously saw. It would appear that SwiftKey Note will let users store multiple ‘Notebooks’ within the app not dissimilar to Evernote.
More images also may suggest arrival to market sooner rather than later. Keep your eyes on the App Store, just in case.