SwiftKey is not only one of the best Android text input methods out there, it’s one of the best text input methods, full stop.
SwiftKey, if you haven’t heard, takes predictive text to the next level, offering next-word predictions that are more often than not bang on the money. What’s even more amazing is that SwiftKey adapts to and learns your lingo as you use it, so that its predictions become more and more accurate over time.
We’ve been in love with the accurate predictive text system ever since we first heard of it, which oddly enough, was a year ago today.
It’s somewhat fitting then that today marks the launch of SwiftKey X for Android phones and SwiftKey X for tablets. SwiftKey X is the next generation of SwiftKey that offers the same great text predictions but takes everything to the next level. Here’s how.
Fluency 2.0 – keystroke logging, multi-lingual support
SwiftKey X’s text prediction works thanks to Fluency 2.0, a revamped version of the original Fluency AI that powered the first SwiftKey.
As well as learning how you construct sentences as you go, SwiftKey X now also logs each individual keypress, analysing how you type as well as what you type. SwiftKey X maps touch-sensitive areas for each key on the virtual Qwerty pad, allowing for incredibly accurate corrections and suggestions.
When setting up SwiftKey X, you’ll also be given the option of choosing from a Precise or Rapid typing style, depending on your preferences.
On top of this, SwiftKey X recognises multiple simultaneous language support. Up to three languages can be supported simultaneously, so you can text people in English, French and Spanish all from the same app without having to dive in and out of settings.
This makes it ideal for people who can speak in more than one language and for those who are learning. Our resident polyglot Mat Smith, who is currently learning German, was said to be uber den Mond mit SwiftKey X’s multiple language support.
SwiftKey X can also comb your Facebook and Twitter profiles as well as your Gmail and text history in order to better understand how you type.
This is a feature that we saw in the SwiftKey X and we loved it back then; the only real difference between this and the beta version is that you now also have the option to post SwiftKey X to your Facebook wall, spreading the word to the fellow Android faithful among your friends.
Your own personal slang and verbiage will also be added to SwiftKey’s memory as you type as well, so if you don’t want it trawling your potentially personal social network babble then it won’t unless you say so.
Colour skins and themes
With SwiftKey X you get the two light and dark colour themes that we saw (again) in the beta, along with a cool new one.
The Dark theme is a Gingerbready green and black scheme that looks more at home on phones like the Samsung Galaxy S2. The default white and grey scheme seems to fit a little better on HTC phones like the Sensation in our opinion. There’s also a Tron-style electric neon blue theme which just looks amazing on any phone.
SwiftKey Tablet X
Along with the SwiftKey X for phones, today sees the release of SwiftKey Tablet X into the Android Market as well. This gives you all of the same amazing prediction and language support as described above, but comes in a format that’s been specifically optimised for Android tablets.
In addition to the standard full Qwerty layout, SwiftKey Tablet X breaks the keys apart into three distinct groups, making it easier to hold and type on tablets in landscape orientation. Numbers and symbols can be accessed by long presses on letter keys, or by tapping the keys in the central area.
This is particularly handy for big tablets like the Xoom, which has a wide 16:9 aspect display, making it sometimes tricky to type on, especially if you have smaller hands.
SwiftKey X and SwiftKey Tablet X are available to download from the Android Market now for £1.49, but previous users of SwiftKey for Android should receive SwiftKey X as a free update on their phones.
We understand that after a 2-day promotional period, these prices will jump to $3.99 (currently £2.47 in UK money) for SwiftKey X and $4.99 (currently £3.09) for SwiftKey Tablet X.
SwiftKey currently supports 22 languages: Bahasa Indonesian, Catalan, Czech, Danish, English (UK and US), Spanish (Spain and US), French (France and Canada), Italian, Hungarian, Dutch, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese (Portugal and Brazil), Romanian, Slovakian, Swedish and Russian.