Google has brought an all new keyboard for iOS users called the Gboard which in addition to conventional typing, let’s you search, use GIFs, emojis and more.
While many keyboards in the market right now focus on providing a better typing experience and better predictions for a faster typing experience, Google took it a step further by embedding Search right in to the keyboard.
A lot of times, we find ourselves having a conversation in the middle of which we need to verify or look for something on Google and get back which without the Gboard means opening a browser or Google’s iOS app, typing what you need, copy or select the stuff, double click the home button to get back to the app you were having a conversation in and paste it there and of course hit send. While it sounds straightforward, it definitely is a little more time consuming. Using Google’s own Gboard will now let you do all of that right on the keyboard itself so you don’t need to fumble around between apps to search what you need. It actually is pretty intuitive.
“Searching and sending stuff on your phone shouldn’t be that difficult. With Gboard, you can search and send all kinds of things—restaurant info, flight times, news articles—right from your keyboard.” says Google,”nything you’d search on Google, you can search with Gboard. Results appear as cards with the key information front and center, such as the phone number, ratings and hours. With one tap, you can send it to your friend and you keep the conversation going.”
The keyboard also works for emoji’s and gifs. “Instead of scrolling to find💃 or 👯 , search for “dancer” and find that emoji you were looking for instantly. Even better—you can search for the perfect GIF to show people how you’re really feeling.”
Google has also added Glide Typing similar to SwiftKey keyboards which enables users to type by sliding their fingers from key to key instead of tapping each one to form a word.
Thanks to Apple opening up keyboards to third parties on iOS, the Gboard can work throughout your workflow on iOS.
Currently the Gboard is only available to iOS users in the US in English (Click here to download the app from the app store). But support for more languages are said to come and hopefully Google opens it up worldwide soon.
Oh and Android users you are not forgotten! Google promises to bring Gboard at some point atleast in the near future according to a product manager. But for those who really want to experience something similar without wanting to wait, you do have an wonderful alternative on Android called Slash Keyboard which provides pretty much the same functionality. A noteworthy point is that it lacks swipe feature which is available on Google’s version Gboard.