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This New Keyboard Will Change Your iPhone Experience Forever!

This New Keyboard Will Change Your iPhone Experience Forever!

While iPhone users tend to have an “Android stigma”, one thing is certain, pretty much everyone uses Google’s apps in some way or another. As an iPhone user, I actually prefer Google’s browser, Chrome, to Apple’s Safari. And let’s not forget to popularity of Gmail, Google Maps, and YouTube.

Recently Google continued to narrow the smartphone divide between Android and iOS users by releasing an incredibly user-friendly, iOS-only keyboard: Gboard.

So, What is Gboard Exactly?

The stock iOS keyboard is admired by most iPhone and iPad users. They are proud of the basic yet functional nature of the keyboard; the touch sensitivity is spot-on and glitches are few and far between. But as more third party keyboard apps such as Swype have become increasingly popular, iPhone users are starting to open up to the idea of a new smartphone keyboard.

Google’s Gboard is an iOS-only keyboard that includes some extremely useful features modeled after the conveniences of already existing third-party keyboards. It allows users to easily find GIFs for text message reactions and seamlessly search through the sea of emojis that exist. Most importantly, Gboard integrates a Google search bar directly into the keyboard.

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gboard

    Emoji search, integrated Google search bar, and GIF search

    Google Search Integrated Right Into Your Texting Keyboard

    After using Gboard for a couple of weeks, I’m convinced that many of these features are crucial time savers. It’s like I never knew I needed these but I’m already realizing how much time I had been wasting. I was constantly switching between my iPhone’s Internet browser and text messages as a means of relaying information to someone via text.

    Fortunately, there’s an integrated Google search bar within Gboard. This means that it’s no longer necessary for iPhone users to navigate away from the text message screen to look something up on Google. The ‘G’ icon is smack dab in the center of everything, which makes the process of googling a fact or getting Google Maps directions a smooth one.

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    It’s also possible to copy/paste information from those search results directly into texts. It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking for a photo, meme, or GIF or whether you’re texting, emailing, or tweeting. Gboard is all inclusive in these regards! I really recognized its full potential when I set Gboard to default on my phone.

    Searching Through Emojis and Reacting with GIFs

    This is a basic feature but in my opinion it’s actually quite groundbreaking. Tech culture is engulfed by simplicities like emojis, and with every iOS update there seems to be new additions to the massive list of colorful and diverse emoticons.

    As the list continues to grow, it can actually be a daunting task just simply trying to find the right emoji. But alas, the frustrations have melted away. Now you only have to spend a second in the search bar, instead of wasting time scrolling and manually searching through everything ‘long-hand.’

    GIFs can also be pasted right into text messages. I love to use these as humorous reactions to things my friends and family say. I was previously searching for these through my phone’s browser, which was also overly time consuming. Thankfully this wasted time has subsided.

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    How to Get Gboard

    Good news! Gboard is a free app, and the installation process is the same as any other third party keyboard. Simply follow these steps, and you’ll be saving lots of time with Gboard:

    • Download Gboard from the iOS App Store
    • Within the app, select “Get Started”
    • Select “Add New Keyboard”
    • Enable Gboard by tapping the app icon and turning it on

    It’s literally that simple. In a matter of seconds you can play around with this new keyboard!

    The settings in Gboard allow you to switch many options off and on. Glide (SWYPE) texting, emoji suggestions, auto-correction/prediction, and swear word censoring are all selectable and customizable.

    Android users need not fret, because there are rumors that Google is looking to add Gboard functionality to Google’s Android keyboard soon.

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    Many people agree that common issues with iPhones are less frequent than Android phones. However a common counterargument is that the iPhone refuses to ‘play nice’ with other non-iOS devices. This is a large reason why the collaboration of Gboard can be viewed as a progressive step forward–one day the smartphone divide may dwindle away.

    Preferences aside, this much is certain: when Apple’s leadership and practicality meet Google’s ingenuity and attention to detail, the byproduct is something beautiful. This is certainly the case with Gboard. Even if you’re a die hard Apple fan, spice up your tech life and give Gboard a shot! You won’t regret it!

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    Robert Parmer

    Freelance Writer

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    Last Updated on September 11, 2019

    8 Most Effective Games and Apps to Learn to Type Fast

    8 Most Effective Games and Apps to Learn to Type Fast

    Computers and cell phones have become an integrated tool in our professional and personal lives that the original methods of using pen and paper may not be so common anymore.

    Although our old-school methods of note taking may not have entirely left us, technology is advancing with no intention of slowing down; iPads are moving into service industries, video calls are taking the place of in-person interviews, and store receipts are making its way into our email inbox – all of which requires the skill of typing.

    Learning a new skill doesn’t have to be boring and never had to be. Thankfully, there are effective games and apps that can help you learn to type fast with swift precision and accuracy.

    Why Typing Fast Matters?

    Learning how to type fast is a game changer. In fact, you can save 21 days per year by typing fast!

    Although shaving several minutes from curating a long email or texting paragraphs in a text message may not seem to be of great significance, the minutes soon do eventually add up and the long list of tasks then evolve into frustration. By the end of the day, time is being wasted, and the work pile is stacked high over your head.

    Why not alleviate some of those frustrations through practice and dedicating your spare time to build muscle memory?

    Learning a simple skillset like speed typing can drastically improve other essential areas in life including time-management and prioritization. Not only does it help you efficiently complete tasks at work and in your personal life, but it also boosts your productivity.

    8 Most Effective Typing Games and Apps

    Everyone learns at different speeds and uses various methods. While some work better under pressure and tight deadlines, others thrive when given ample amounts of time to learn and soak in the knowledge that is being provided. Despite the number of resources that are available in the hollow corners of the internet, it’s all about finding one source that helps you learn at your fullest potential.

    Whether you’re a keyboard ninja or not, here are some effective typing games and apps that allow you to test your speed, accuracy, and maybe shoot some spaceships along the way.

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    For Beginners

    1. Speed Typing Online

      What’s more fun than to type to the story of Alice in Wonderland or the lyrics to “Hey Jude”? Speed Typing Online is an online typing game that allows you to dive into the creative and familiar world of famous books, fables, songs, and even hone your skills in data entry.

      The bright blue frame holds the text, which then turns green after punching in the accurate keystrokes. After the end of the personal timer, a statistics page appears to show you your typed words per minute, accuracy, correct and incorrect entries, and error rate.

      2. Typing Trainer

        Typing Trainer

        is another online platform suited for beginner typists looking for step-by-step lessons. Learning the keys on a keyboard can confusing especially for those who aren’t as familiar or getting adjusted to typing on a computer keyboard.

        Typing Trainer has a collection of step-by-step tutorials that covers everything from sentence drills, introduction to new keys as the lessons progress, and skills test. The Typing Trainer specifically highlights unique features in each lesson including a warm-up section where the user begin to build muscle memory and learn to type without looking at the keyboard.

        The website is also programed to identify difficulties the user is facing when typing specific words or sentences.

        3. TapTyping – Typing Trainer

          There is the feeling of physically typing on a keyboard and then there’s the feeling of typing on a touch screen mobile device.

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          Since the use of cell phones has become closely integrated into our everyday lives, learning to type on a mobile is much of a skillset as it is to type on a computer. The mobile typing app, TapTyping – Typing Trainer, allows users to practice while on-the-go making it perfect for commuters who want to practice typing during their down time.

          The app allows you to challenge other typists around the world with TapTyping’s global leaderboard and test your skills by taking advanced lessons. There’s always room for improvement and with the app, you’ll be able to find your mistakes by watching a heat map of your finger strokes.

          For professional writers and programmers

          4. The Most Dangerous Writing App

            Suitable for writers facing a creative block or on a tight-deadline, the Most Dangerous Writing App is a website that forces your fingers to type as quickly as your ideas.

            If you stop longer than 5 seconds, everything you had written will slowly disappear from the screen.

            Sessions are timed from 3 minutes to 20 minutes, or can go from 75 to 1667 words. This online app is perfect to brain dump ideas, write a chapter of a manuscript you’ve been stuck on, or help with procrastination.

            If you’re up to the challenge, try the hardcore mode – an alternative option where a single letter appears on the screen at a time. This level prevents you from seeing the entire word, sentences, or even correct any spelling or grammatical mistakes until the timer is complete.

            If you’re wondering, copying and pasting is not an option until each the end of each session.

            5. The Typing Cat

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              Looking to upgrade your typing skills? Also working as a personal tutor, the Typing Cat has a list of regular typing courses with the option to try other lessons with more complexity such as HTML. Learning to type code is a another valulable skillset worth adding.

              Even with disregarded interest in the coding world, using the code course enhances your typing skills and allows your fingers to familiarize itself with uncommon word combinations and placement of punctuations on a keyboard.

              The coding course can be difficult even for typing whizzes, but it’s all a part of muscle memory. According Psychology Today,[1] only a handful of people actually learn how to type by looking at an actual keyboard, while a majority of the population locate specific keys intuitively through muscle memory.

              Available courses include EcmaScript 6, HTML 5, and CSS 3.

              Fun typing games

              6. ZType — Space Invaders Meet Webster

                Remember playing the iconic 70’s game that allowed you to shoot tiny purple and green aliens from one end of the screen to the other with a two-bullet laser? It’s hard to believe that Space Invaders just turned 40 , but you can still get the same adrenaline rush with ZType, a typing game with the same shooting concept.

                Ztype works in waves – stages that must be cleared but instead of aliens, you must type out the words before the missiles destroy your ship at the bottom of the screen. Every so often, longer and mor complex words would appear and if the words are not typed in the allotted time, a series of letters will disperse like missles.

                The game is quick on the fingers and will still have your heart pumping until the very end.

                7. Epistory – Typing Chronicles

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                  Although this game does cost money to purchase, it is worth the investment if you’re looking for a refreshing and alternative mode to learning how to type fast.

                  Epistory – Typing Chronicles is a role-playing action and adventure game of a young girl riding a fox in a magical and fictional realm; together they combat enemies in the shapes and forms of words.

                  Once you’re starterted, you almost forget you’re playing a typing game. The paper craft art aesthetics of the game has you captivated by the vibrant colors and character’s storyline, while having you build your typing skills.

                  8. Daily Quote Typing

                    Need some inspiration? Say no more.

                    Daily Quote Typing is one of many gammes available on Wordgames.com – a website that offers a variety of typing games ranging from different levels based on your experience.

                    With Daily Quote Typing, users are able to type out inspirational quotes by famous leaders, inventors, and innovators such as Mark Twain and Albert Einstein.

                    Bottom Line

                    At the end of the day, discipline and patience is what teaches to type faster. It comes down to making that commitment to improving not only your typing abilities, but in a lifelong skill that benefits other areas in life.

                    By practicing daily and using effective games and apps, it’s only a matter of time before keystrokes will become second nature and your brain will adapt to learning other skills faster.

                    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                    Reference

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