Emoji, Puppets, GIFs & Stickers
    How to use Puppets with Microsoft SwiftKey Beta for Android
    1. Introducing Puppets
    2. How to create your Puppet
    3. Tips for using Puppets
    4. How does it work?
    5. Data and Privacy
    6. Help us to improve Puppets


    1 - Introducing Puppets

    We love dreaming-up fun and innovative ways for you to express yourself through your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard.

    Today we invite you to try out Puppets – an interactive and experimental feature that will allow you to control your own virtual character. There’s a choice between five different animated characters: Dinosaur, Panda, Cat, Owl or Dog – and each Puppet will mimic your facial expressions and head movements.

    You can also record short videos of your Puppet in action, and then share recordings to your friends and family.


    2 - How to create your Puppet

    Puppets lives in your Toolbar. But you'll only see the icon if your phone satisfies the minimum system requirements:

    • Your phone is running Android 9.0 (Pie)
    • Your phone is equipped with a minimum of 8GB RAM. Examples include: Samsung Galaxy S10, Google Pixel 4 XL, Huawei P30 Pro, and OnePlus 7 Pro.

    To open Puppets:

    1. Open your Microsoft SwiftKey Beta Toolbar
    2. Tap on the ‘Panda’ icon to launch Puppets.

    On first run the Panda will be picked as default – let the camera find your face


    To pick another character

    1. Tap on the Dinosaur, Cat, Dog or Owl icon.
    2. You'll be prompted to sign into your Microsoft SwiftKey Account (if you're not signed-in already).
    3. Press the ‘Download’ button. If you don’t want to use your data allowance, then make sure you connect to a Wi-Fi network first.

    Once you've downloaded a character - just tap on its icon to switch. There's no need to repeat the other steps unless you sign out of your Microsoft SwiftKey Account, reinstall your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard, or use Puppets on an entirely new device.


    To share your Puppet

    Pressing the red ‘Record’ icon will let you record short video (and audio) snippets. Each clip is limited to 30 seconds in length.

    You can then share these video and audio recordings directly to your friends and family through most Android messaging and social apps. 

    record-puppet.jpg Screenshot_20190703_163739.jpg

    If you'd like to share your Puppet with audio just tap the 'speaker' icon to toggle this on/off.


    When you're done tinkering, tap 'Send' to share your character.

    3 - Tips for an enjoyable Puppets experience

    Before you use the feature for the first time, you’ll see an animated graphic that shows you the best angle to hold your phone. 


    To ensure best performance of your virtual puppet we recommend using the feature in a brightly lit environment, and your phone’s camera should have an unobstructed view of your face. 

    And while your Puppet should work when wearing glasses, you’ll probably have less luck if used with pets!

    When recording video your audio will be picked up too, so why not make your Puppet talk?

    4 - How does it work?

    Puppets uses AI which has been trained using thousands of images and videos of people making different expressions to track and record facial movements.  The feature understands everyone’s unique face shape by using facial anchors such as the corner of the eyes. Puppet animation is then achieved by transferring those tracked human facial expressions and head motions to the Puppet in real-time.

    5 - Data and Privacy

    Images collected by the camera are not stored and not transmitted. They are in device memory for a few milliseconds to recognize the expression locally on device and are then discarded.

    6 - Help us to improve Puppets

    Puppets is very much a Beta feature and a work in progress. 

    If you find your Puppet crashes or struggles to mimic specific expressions, we’d be grateful if you could share this feedback with us.

    Please submit a support ticket by clicking here. When asked 'What's your question about?' choose the 'Emoji, Puppets, GIFs & Stickers' category and kindly provide us with as much information as possible. 

    Your feedback will help us improve the feature and shape the future of Puppets.

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    How to use Stickers with your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard
    1. How to access Microsoft SwiftKey Stickers
    2. Adding a Sticker to your conversation
    3. Edit and add text to your Sticker
    4. Pin Stickers to your Collection
    5. Stickers FAQ

    For those times when text just isn't enough, stickers are just one of the ways, your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard allows you to express yourself in more than just words. 

    1 - How to access Microsoft SwiftKey Stickers

    It's easy to get at all the cool stickers your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard offers:

    From the Toolbar

    Toolbar can be opened by tapping theIcon to expand Toolbar icon to the left of the prediction bar. 

    Select the 'Stickers' icon.

    From the dedicated emoji key

    The dedicated emoji key is located on your keyboard, tap it and choose the 'Stickers' icon.

    2 - Adding a Sticker to your conversation

    Before you begin to delight your friends with stickers you'll first need to download some sticker packs or design one yourself.

    At the time of writing we offer an assortment of different sticker packs. Plus there's the option to use your own image to create something unique, so you'll be discovering new favorites all the time!

    Downloading a Sticker Pack

    Scroll left and right to view the sticker packs available.

    Press the 'Download pack' prompt (you'll only have to do this once for each pack).

    Tap on a sticker to select it from the pack.

    Creating your own Sticker

    1. Tap the 'Pin' icon to open your Collection.
    2. Press the 'Create sticker' button.
    3. Select an image from your device.

    You can also add text or pin your sticker to your Collection for later use. Press the blue 'Send' icon when you're done.

    Because stickers are built into your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard, you can use them in practically any app you like. 

    3 - Edit and add text to your Sticker

    Tap the 'T+' icon to add text to your sticker.

    Tap into the text box that appears.

    Type your caption. Press 'Done' when you're finished.

    Drag the boundary box to reposition your text on your Sticker. You can resize the text by long-pressing the small blue square.

    Tap the 'X' to close the Sticker preview. 

    4 - Pin Stickers to your Collection

    Your Collection is a place where all of the Stickers you've saved and created live.

    Any Stickers you've created using your own images will be saved to your Collection by default.

    If you've added text to a sticker from a pack (and wish to save it for later use), tap the 'Pin' icon to save to your Collection. 

    If you no longer wish to display the Sticker in your Collection, longpress on it and choose 'Delete' when prompted.


    5 - Frequently Asked Questions

    • It's not possible to add text to animated stickers.
    • Text colour and font style can't be customised at this time.
    • Sticker Packs have been designed to be downloaded quickly. However, we will remind you to connect to WiFi to avoid using your data. If a download fails we'll prompt you to try again. 
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    How to add and search for GIFs in Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard
    1. How to access GIFs using Microsoft SwiftKey
    2. Adding a GIF to your conversation
    3. Searching for GIFs
    4. Common GIF issues

    If you love GIFs as much as we do, you'll be pleased to learn we've made it possible to search, discover and share your favorite GIFs directly from your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard.

    1 - How to access GIFs

    GIFS can be found by opening your Emoji panel.

    To do this, either:

    • Open the Toolbar by tapping theIcon to expand Toolbar icon, then press the 'GIF' icon.


    2 - How to add GIFs to your conversation

    Adding and selecting a GIF works in exactly the same way as Emoji.

    GIFs are housed in a number of different categories - these can be scrolled left and right.

    Just tap on your GIF of choice to insert it into your message.

    If you're struggling to find that perfect GIF, you might want to take advantage of the search tool.

    1. Tap the magnifying glass icon.
    2. Type into the search bar.
    3. Microsoft SwiftKey will return your GIF search results.

    We are aware of the following limitations when adding GIFs (please note these are not reportable bugs):

    GIFs are replaced by URLs

    On some devices you'll find that it's not possible to attach them to a text message (resulting in your GIF being replaced with a URL).

    This can happen for two reasons: because they exceed the maximum allowable file size, or certain networks impose limits which we can’t control. In the first instance we encourage users to download and use an alternative to their stock messaging app. A popular recommendation is Google's Android Messages app.

    Unable to reply with a GIF

    Sometimes you'll find that sending a GIF creates a brand new conversation or message.

    Data usage

    As with any rich media, if you're concerned about the effect GIFs might have on your data allowance we'd recommend switching to WiFi while browsing and sending GIFs.

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    How do I change the style of emoji in my Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard?

    It's not currently possible to change the emoji style within Microsoft SwiftKey itself. Your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard uses the standard Android/iOS emoji font, which means that the emoji style you see within Microsoft SwiftKey (emoji panel/emoji predictions) is dependent on your OS or the app you are using.

    However, in most messaging apps you can choose which emoji style you see once you have input an emoji or sent/received a message. 

    For more information on why emoji look different within different apps, please see this article

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    Why can't I see the latest emoji on my Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard?
    Microsoft SwiftKey relies on the Android system font. This means it only ever renders what's available on the system to ensure a consistent experience across devices.
    Why can I see the latest emoji in messaging apps like WhatsApp?
    The reason you can see the latest emoji when using WhatsApp is because it uses its own font. 


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    How to use Emoji with your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard

    Everybody loves emoji, and in this guide we'll talk you through the emoji panel and emoji prediction.

    1. Emoji panel
    2. Emoji prediction

    1 - Emoji panel

    How to access the emoji panel

    We offer you two different ways of accessing the emoji panel:

    1. By long pressing the ‘enter’ (return) key found in the bottom right hand corner of the keyboard. 
    2. With the dedicated emoji key in the bottom left.

    enter-emoji-key.jpg emoji-key.jpg

    Change your emoji preferences by following the below steps:

    1. Open the Microsoft SwiftKey app
    2. Tap 'Emoji'
    3. Toggle the 'Dedicated emoji key' setting to the on position

    main-emoji-highlighted.jpg emoji-menu.jpg

    How to use the emoji panel

    The emoji panel enables you to easily find and insert emoji into messages. The full-width panel allows you to see a large selection of emoji at a time.


    Once you’ve found the emoji you’re after, simply tap to insert into your text field - as many times as you’d like. Once you’re done, just tap the ‘abc’ key in the bottom left hand corner to go back to the standard keyboard.

    2 - Emoji prediction

    What is Emoji prediction?

    As you probably know, at Microsoft SwiftKey we like to predict things (mainly words). What you may not know is that your Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard also provides you with the option of having emoji suggested on the prediction bar.

    With emoji prediction enabled, Microsoft SwiftKey will suggest emoji in the prediction bar for various words. It will also learn from your emoji usage so that if you always send a particular emoji after a particular word, Microsoft SwiftKey will have that ready and waiting for you, like this:

    How to enable/disable Emoji prediction

    To enable or disable emoji prediction, please do the following:

    1. Open the Microsoft SwiftKey app
    2. Tap 'Emoji'
    3. Toggle the ‘Emoji predictions' setting to the on position

    main-emoji-highlighted.jpg emoji-predictions.jpg

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    I don't see any emoji on Android. How do I get them?

    Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard for Android uses the standard Android font. This means, that depending on what version of the Android OS your device(s) are running and what app you are using, the look and color of the emoji will be impacted. Different manufacturers may also provide a different font than the standard Android one as well. 

    Also, if the font on your device has been changed to something other than the Android system font, emoji will most likely not be visible. This issue has to do with the actual font and not Microsoft SwiftKey.

    The emoji menu is accessed from the keyboard by tapping or long pressing the emoji/enter key in the bottom right corner, or via the dedicated emoji key in the bottom left (depending on your settings). 

    You can change this by following the below steps:

    1. Open the Microsoft SwiftKey app
    2. Tap 'Emoji'
    3. Toggle the 'Dedicated emoji key' setting to the on position
    • main-emoji-highlighted.jpg emoji-menu.jpg

    With the 'Dedicated emoji key' checked, just tap on the emoji (smiley) face to open the emoji panel.


    If you leave it unchecked you can still access emoji by long pressing the 'Enter' key. 

    Once you open the panel, just scroll through, choose the emoji you would like to use, and tap to enter into the text field. Or, you can return to the normal keyboard panel by tapping the 'abc' key. 


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    How do I switch between an enter/emoji key on my Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard?

    With Microsoft SwiftKey you have the option to choose between having a default enter (return) or emoji key. To edit this setting:

    1. Open the Microsoft SwiftKey app
    2. Tap 'Emoji'
    3. Toggle the 'Dedicated emoji key' setting to the on position

    main-emoji-highlighted.jpg emoji-menu.jpg

    When this option is left unchecked, emoji can still be accessed from within your messaging apps by long pressing the enter key. 


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    How can I make Android emoji show up in the prediction bar?

    To enable emoji predictions for Microsoft SwiftKey please follow the steps below. 

    1. Open the Microsoft SwiftKey app
    2. Tap 'Emoji'
    3. Toggle the ‘Emoji predictions' setting to the on position

    main-emoji-highlighted.jpg emoji-predictions.jpg


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    Are emoji predicted in my language with Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard?

    Emoji prediction is currently only available in the languages below.

    - Arabic
    - Assamese
    - Bengali
    - Bosnian
    - Bulgarian
    - Croatian
    - Czech
    - Danish (Denmark)
    - Dutch (Belgium)
    - Dutch (Netherlands)
    - English (Australia)
    - English (Canada)
    - English (United Kingdom)
    - English (United States)
    - Estonian
    - Finnish
    - French (Canada)
    - French (France)
    - German (Germany)
    - German (Switzerland)
    - Greek
    - Gujarati
    - Hebrew
    - Hindi
    - Hungarian
    - Indonesian
    - Italian
    - Japanese
    - Kannada
    - Korean
    - Latvian
    - Lithuanian
    - Macedonian
    - Malayalam
    - Marathi
    - Nepali
    - Norwegian (Bokmål)
    - Oriya
    - Polish
    - Portuguese (Brazil)
    - Portuguese (Portugal)
    - Punjabi
    - Romanian
    - Russian
    - Serbian
    - Sinhala
    - Slovak
    - Slovenian
    - Spanish (Latin America)
    - Spanish (Spain)
    - Spanish (United States)
    - Swedish
    - Tamil
    - Telugu
    - Turkish
    - Ukrainian
    - Urdu

    We hope to support emoji predictions in additional languages in the future. 

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    Why do emoji look different in certain apps with Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard on Android?

    Emoji on the Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard uses the standard Android font. This means, that depending on what version of Android your device(s) are running and what app you are using, the look and color of the emoji will be impacted.

    Some apps, such as Facebook and WhatsApp, have built in their own variations of emoji that are different from the Android system font.

    This means that if you use a Microsoft SwiftKey emoji on Facebook, for example, it will look different in the app compared to what you saw in Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard. This is not a bug, but something implemented by other apps. Also, if you send messages from an Android device to an iOS device (or vice versa) the emoji may display differently.

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    Why are emoji sent as question marks on my Microsoft SwiftKey Keyboard?

    To resolve this issue, please try the below steps.

    1. Go to your Messaging app menu
    2. Tap settings
    3. Tap input mode
    4. Change to automatic

    Please note that this may result in your SMS messages being sent as an MMS, which may cause extra charges depending on your mobile network provider.

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