How to set up SwiftKey on Android

We all know that typing can be frustrating at times - dealing with typos, long words, and the inevitable autocorrect fails. We’ve put together these handy guides to help you get SwiftKey set up and working seamlessly, so your keyboard is one less troublesome thing in your life. Whether you are brand new or have been using SwiftKey for years, we think you'll find something new here to enhance your time with us.

If you are looking for support, or to help, this may not be the best place. So check out the rest of our Android Help Center or write into one of our amazing community managers.

 

This first guide to ‘Setting Up SwiftKey’ will take you through the following:

  1. Customizing SwiftKey
  2. Languages
  3. Personalizing and backing up your words
  4. Customizing your keyboard

1 - Customizing SwiftKey

One of our top tips to get SwiftKey working for you is to really get to know your way around the SwiftKey Hub and Settings - i.e. the command centres.

SwiftKey Hub

The SwiftKey Hub is designed to be the home for all of the content and features you use most often. You can tap or slide on the ‘hamburger’ menu on the top left of the keyboard for quick access to Personalize, the SwiftKey Store, and other Settings.

For more detailed information on the Hub, including a video, please see this article.

SwiftKey Settings

You might like to think of the SwiftKey Settings as an extension of the SwiftKey Hub. Although most settings that you’ll need on a day-to-day basis can be easily accessed via the SwiftKey Hub, we do have more for all you curious cats!

You can either get to these through the SwiftKey Hub by tapping ‘More’ from the settings pane, or by opening the SwiftKey app directly from your device.

Within these settings, you’ll be able to really fine tune SwiftKey and also set up things such as your language packs/layouts, your sound/vibration options, and your text correction preferences.

OK - now that you know where to find everything, let’s move on to setting up your languages!

2 - Languages

SwiftKey supports over 100 languages, so, even if you speak more than one, there’s a good chance we support yours! Also, you can type in up to five languages at once, so for all you clever multilinguals (or aspiring ones) this means less frustrations switching and more time spent typing to the ones you love.

Downloading/Enabling languages

First things first, where to download and enable your languages?

This can be done from the ‘Languages’ section in SwiftKey Settings (either accessed from the SwiftKey Hub > More, or from opening the app from your device):

  • You’ll see a long list of available languages and simply need to tap one to download.
  • Downloaded languages will be automatically enabled, and you can enable up to three languages at once.

Video captions are available here

Check out this article for a more detailed explanation, complete with pretty pictures.

Setting Language Layout

It may be that you wish to type in German, but with a QWERTY keyboard layout, or in English with a QWERTZ layout. So, how to change your language layout?

This can also be done from the ‘Languages’ section in SwiftKey Settings. Once you have downloaded a language pack, simply tap the box underneath to see a list of available layouts and choose the one you want.

Video captions are available here

Check out this article for a more detailed explanation, complete with pretty pictures.

If you’d like to learn more about using SwiftKey with more than one language, please see this explanation with video.

So, now you're all set with your languages, we can move on to the exciting world of your SwiftKey Account! 

3 - Personalizing and backing up your words

Turbo charge your SwiftKey experience right from the beginning with a SwiftKey Account.

SwiftKey Account

Your SwiftKey Account is a free opt-in service that enhances SwiftKey Keyboard by leveraging the power of the cloud. As part of this, you can:

  • Instantly tailor your predictions to you, by letting SwiftKey learn from the way you type on a range of social networks (including Facebook and Twitter).
  • Safely store your most used words and sync them across all your devices (never lose your learned words again!).

All you need to perform this magic is to:

  • Create a SwiftKey Account (either accessed from the SwiftKey Hub > Account, or from opening the app from your device).
  • Tap ‘Personalization’ and choose which locations you’d like SwiftKey to learn from (you can come back at any time and do this again).
  • Ensure ‘Backup & Sync’ is enabled.

Video captions are available here

Privacy and Data Security

It’s important for you to know that we take privacy and data security extremely seriously. The SwiftKey Account is an opt-in, secure, encrypted service and gives you full control over your data. Our robust Privacy Policy explains and protects your rights and privacy.

You can also read more about our approach to data security in our Data Security Statement.  

For further general reading about the SwiftKey Account, Personalization and Backup & Sync, please continue here.

OK - keep going, you’re almost there! 

4 - Customizing your keyboard

SwiftKey offers many options when it comes to customizing your typing experience.

Text Correction

One of the coolest things about SwiftKey is that it not only corrects your typos (and therefore saves you from multiple embarrassments), but it also predicts your *next* word (i.e. reads your mind!).

Now, you may be someone who loves mashing your fingers on the keyboard and having it be translated into intelligible words. Or you may instead be a very careful typist who wants full control. Do not fear - SwiftKey allows you to choose the behavior of your spacebar so that it does one of the following:

  • Always inserts the middle prediction
  • Always completes the current word you’re typing
  • Always inserts a space (uncheck 'Autocorrect')

Tip: in each case, you’ll still always be able to enter predictions directly from the prediction bar.

These settings can be found in the ‘Typing’ settings page (either accessed from the SwiftKey Hub > Typing, or from opening the app from your device).

   

Input Methods

If you would like to type by seamlessly gliding your finger across the keyboard, then SwiftKey Flow is something you’ll want to check out! You can learn more about Flow later on in the guide (or check out this article if you just can’t wait 🕙) but for now, if you want to give it a spin, you can do so from the Typing > Gesture input setting page (accessed by opening the app from your device).

 

From the Typing > Voice & Other Input settings you can also choose whether or not you’d like to enable the voice input key to make voice dictation possible.

Keyboard Features

You'll also want to check out the ‘Keys’ settings page - it's accessible either from the SwiftKey Hub > Keys, or from opening the app from your device and tapping Typing > Keys). From here you can choose to add options to your keyboard such as:

  • Arrow keys
  • Number row
  • Emoji prediction
  • Additional accented characters

In addition you can choose the position of your number pad (left or right), and select whether you would like easier access to the enter key or the emoji panel.

For all of you who have a love for precision, you’ll be pleased to know that we also provide you with the option to select your long-keypress duration (i.e. the amount of time you need to press a key to access the secondary key options) - get this, down to the millisecond.

Sound and Vibration

Whether you love or hate the idea of hearing a sound every time you tap a key, you can adjust your keypress sound and vibration settings under ‘Sound & Vibration’ in the SwiftKey Settings (accessed by opening the app from your device and navigating to Typing > Sound & Vibration). This includes choosing the volume and duration of the sound/vibration, as well as disabling or enabling.

Want to learn more? Head to our ‘Using the Keyboard’ tutorial and redeem an exclusive keyboard theme while you're at it!

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