We all have a phrase, a number, or another string of text that we type over and over again. You may not be able to think of certain things you type repeatedly, but if you pay a bit of attention, you’ll definitely find some words.
1- Email addresses
2- Names/addresses/phone numbers
3- Common phrases: “I’ll call you later,” “where are you?,” “i love you,” etc.
4- Complex symbols or emoticons.
By adding a quick text shortcut to your Android phone’s personal dictionary, you can type a full sentence with just a few letters.
Once you’ve tweaked the right settings, you can ask “you there?” in a text message by simply tapping, say, “yt”.
You could also conjure your street address, your official title, or a phone number in just a few keystrokes. These can save you a lot of time when you are very busy, and can certainly save some strain on your fingers. These are called custom shortcuts because you add them to your Android phone yourself so they reflect the way you communicate, so you add custom text shortcuts to suit your personal needs.
How to Add Custom Text and Shortcuts to your Android
1- Open the Settings app.
2- Tap on Language and Input.
3- In the Languages & input menu, select the “Personal Dictionary” option.
4- Tap the ‘+’ icon in the top right
5- You should see two text fields
6- In the “phrase” input box you type whatever phrase or word you want to come up ultimately. Then, in the “shortcut” box, type in the abbreviation you want to use for this phrase..
7- Tap the Back key, or Tap the “Save” button. and you’ll see an entry for the shortcut you just added.
Want to add more shortcuts?
So, Tap the “+” sign again…
Using a Shortcut
1. Open any place that you can use your keyboard (i.e. text messaging, email, web browsing, etc.) and type in one of your shortcuts. You should see the corresponding phrase come up in the spelling suggestions above the keyboard on your screen.
The feature doesn’t extend beyond the Google Keyboard, just make sure you also select the Google keyboard to be your primary one.
if you use something popular like SwiftKey klavye, it won’t work.
Most Android users know how to add app shortcuts to home screen of mobile phones. Just open up the app drawer, hold down on an app icon, then drag it over to the home screen of your choice. On a Tecno mobile phone, open up the A-Z app launch, long press on an app icon until you get the pop-up action menu, choose Send to desktop. See this guide to send app to desktop on Tecno phone. Recent Android versions even allow users to create custom app shortcuts on Android devices. These custom shortcuts work like app shortcuts, but take you to specific tools or features within the apps. For example, instead of opening the Camera app, then switch from back to front camera to take a selfie, you can create a shortcut to the selfie camera so you can one tap to launch the front selfie camera without opening up the camera app first.
Note that not very app supports custom shortcuts. You can only create custom shortcuts for those apps that include App Actions. Here is how you can create custom app shorts on Tecno mobile phones.
Create custom app shortcuts on Tecno & Android phones
On your home screen, locate the app icon, long press on it. You should see a pop-up menu, which includes all of the available App Actions.
You can tap an action entry to quickly access and perform certain activity which takes the efficiency to the next level. For those frequently used tools and features, you can dig a little deeper by creating app-like shortcuts to them on your home screen.
From the App Action menu, instead of tapping an entry, tap and drag it to your home screen. After that you will see a new launcher or shortcut on your home screen.
Custom App shortcuts vs Smart Panel shortcuts
Tecno mobile phones have the built-in quick launcher tool, named Smart Panel, which can help us quickly access our favorite apps and tools on the phone. It works like the Quick Settings on Android devices.
Android users should be familiar with Quick Settings menu. Just swipe down from the top of your phone screen and you’re ready to toggle several different system settings on or off.
Smart Panel is a floating menu bar on your Tecno mobile phone. You can activate it from Settings > Smart Panel. From there you can drag it to any edge of the screen from the Settings screen or your Tecno phone home screen. The Smart Panel will stay where you place it until you move it again.
Pull up the Smart Panel, tap on Add button to choose and add any app shortcuts of your liking to the quick access panel.
Tip / Trick
Why would you want to add custom text shortcuts to your Android mobile phone? Once you understand its benefits then we’ll show you how to make it happen.
If you do a lot of texting on your mobile, you sometimes get aggravated with having to enter certain phrases or sentences over and over again in your text messages. It’s always the same long sentences, short phrases and sometimes those cumbersome email addresses with all the symbols that people try to put in their email addresses. Ever since texting began, people have wished for a way to add custom text shortcuts to their smartphones.
It gets very exasperating to repeatedly type your phone number, mobile number, or address and your email address, or short phrases such as “I’ll see you later,” “Can’t talk now, will call later,” or “I’m on my way,” in text messages to people. You avoid this monotonous repetition when you add custom text shortcuts to your mobile.
What are Custom Shortcuts?
Custom shortcuts are short phrases or even words or abbreviations that you can add to the dictionary on your phone to avoid typing the entire sentence or phrase. These can save you a lot of time when you are very busy, and can certainly save some strain on your fingers. You can type in just a few letters and the phone’s personal dictionary will fill in the rest of the phrase for you effortlessly. These are called custom shortcuts because you add them to your Android phone yourself so they reflect the way you communicate, so you add custom text shortcuts to suit your personal needs.
You will recognize certain patterns in your texting that are repetitive. These are prime candidates for creating shortcuts. Common phrases like “how are you”, “that’s no good,” “good to hear,” and longer phrases like “love you to the moon and back,” can all be filled in by the Android when you simply enter the shortcut letters (such as tng for “that’s no good”).
How to Add Custom Text Shortcuts to your Android
Here is are the simple steps you can follow to add custom text shortcuts to your Android:
Step 1: Swipe down on your phone to reveal the “cog” icon on the top right.
Step 2: Tap on “Language and Input”
Step 3: Tap on “Personal Dictionary”
Step 4: Tap the “+” sign in the top right corner
Step 5: In the “phrase” input box you type whatever phrase or word you want to come up ultimately. Then, in the “shortcut” box, type in the abbreviation you want to use for this phrase.
Step 6: Tap “Save”
Repeat steps 5 and 6 as many times as necessary, until all your phrases/shortcuts are created. This completes the process to add custom text shortcuts to your Android. Now you’re ready to save some time!
Testing the Shortcut
Now open a browser, email composer, text messaging or messenger app and type in one of your shortcuts. You should see the corresponding phrase come up in the spelling suggestions above the keyboard on your screen. You can tap it in the suggestions to input the phrase, but the fastest way is to just hit the spacebar on your mobile keyboard and the phrase will appear.
While you’re creating your shortcuts, you might want to make a note of them somewhere that you can access them quickly, especially if you make quite a few. You may have a hard time remembering them all at first, but once you get going you won’t need your ‘cheat sheet’ anymore.
We have learned how to add custom text shortcuts to our Android mobile phones to relieve ourselves of boring and repetitive typing during our texting activity. Adding the custom shortcuts is easy to do and will save you a lot of aggravation down the road.
Tired of repeatedly tapping your street address, your job title, or common phrases like “on my way” or “you there?” on your iPhone or Android phone?
If so, good news. Both iOS and Android devices will let you create your own, custom keyboard shortcuts for … well, just about anything.
Once you’ve tweaked the right settings, you can ask “you there?” in a text message by simply tapping, say, “yt”. You could also conjure your street address, your official title, or a phone number in just a few keystrokes.
Here’s how to do it…
Just type your new keyboard shortcut on your iPhone and the full phrase will appear just above the keypad.
On an iPhone (or iPad):
- Tap Settings, General, Keyboard, Text Replacement, then tap the “+” button in the top-right corner of the screen.
- In the blank next to “Phrase,” type in (for example) “You there?” Then, in the Shortcut section, tap in the letters “u” and “t.”
- Tap the “Save” button. All done!
Let’s give our new shortcut a try. Go to Messages, compose a new message, and tap “ut.” Your new “You there?” shortcut should appear in the strip of auto-correct suggestions along the top of the keypad. Press the space bar or a punctuation mark to accept.
You can add custom keyboard shortcuts to your Android device’s Personal Dictionary.
On an Android device:
- Tap Settings, Language & Input, “Personal dictionary,” then pick a language or choose the “For all languages” option. (Note: the exact settings may differ depending on the make and model of your Android phone.)
- Tap the “+” sign in the top-right corner of the screen, then enter the word or phrase (like “on my way”) you’d like to make a shortcut for.
- Next, type a brief, easy-to-remember shortcut into the “Shortcut” field; for example, “omw” for “on my way.”
- Tap the Back key, and you’ll see an entry for the shortcut you just added. Want to add more shortcuts? Tap the “+” sign again.
Now, go to, say, the Gmail app, compose a new message, and tap one of your new shortcuts—and when you do, the phrase you entered will appear in the row of auto-correct options just above the keyboard. Tap the phrase to add it to your message.
Click here for more Android tips, or click here for more help with your iPhone or iPad!
One of the most impressive things about Android is how easy is to modify and customize your phone according to your likings. With the right apps and a little time, you can make your smartphone look astonishing. But, do you really think that the most important thing is to make your phone look great? OK, I am not saying that it doesn’t matter at all. But at the end of the day, your phone is just a tool that you use for various tasks. And, if it is not capable of performing these tasks, the beautiful look will not make you feel better.
Aside from the apps for making your phone look fantastic, here I will present you 3 handy apps that will increase the overall functionality of your Android smartphone. These apps will allow you quick access to your most used Android features. Here you can learn how to create custom app shortcuts on your Android device.
More Shortcuts is a free app that you can find on the Google Play Store. It has a simple, self-explanatory design. It is friendly for use and allows you quick access to the most used functions of your phone.
With this app, you can add activity shortcuts from almost any app. For example, if you like to launch your smartphone’s Camcorder directly from your home screen, without launching the camera first, you can create a shortcut for it. More shortcuts will let you turn on the flash, put your device to silent, play any content from your gallery with a single tap on your home screen, and much more.
The procedure for adding a shortcut is pretty simple. First, you need to select the action for your shortcut from the menu of the app. In my case that would be to lock the screen. After you click on the action, you can choose the icon for your shortcut, as well as the label. When you finish customizing your shortcut, you can click OK, and the shortcut will appear on your home screen.
More shortcuts even have an option to open one or multiple floating widgets from your home screen shortcuts, but for that function and a couple of others, it requires purchasing additional apps. However, even only with this free app, you have a wide variety of handy shortcuts. Here is the download link, if you are interested More Shortcuts.
Omni Swipe is an app with a high rating on the Google Play Store for a good reason. This app is awesome when it comes to custom shortcuts and multitasking. One of the strongest aspects of the app is its appealing design. All the interactions on this app are available on a rotating wheel which looks very attractive and is easy to use. You can access it with a swipe on your right or left corner, depending on your likings.
All the shortcuts in this app are divided into 3 categories: recent, favorites, and toolbox. For rearranging or adding new shortcuts just tap and hold on one of the items on your rotating wheel. For further customization, you can also access the Omni Swipe app from your app drawer. Here you can change the overall theme of the circular menu, add notifications to it, and add some additional functionalities. With the paid version of the app, you can even create your custom tabs with app shortcuts. This is a convenient app for everyone who wants to increase the functionality of his Android device. Here is the link to the Google Play Store Omni Swipe.
Notification Shortcuts is another app that allows you to create custom shortcuts on your Android device. But, the unique thing about this app, as the name suggests, is that you can access the shortcuts right from your notification area.
The free version of Notification Shortcuts allows you to create 12 shortcuts in one row. However, if that one row is not enough for you, there is a premium version of the app which allows you 3 rows.
The setup of the app is pretty simple. Just tap on the empty field and choose what you want to assign to that particular field. You can choose from your Apps, Shortcuts, or Settings Toggles. There is also an option for customizing the icons as well.
Whether you’re chatting, playing games, or watching Youtube videos, you can access these shortcuts from your notification for less than 3 seconds. I really can’t find a reason why you wouldn’t like to try this handy app. Here is the download link Notification Shortcuts.
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We all have a phrase, a number, or another string of text that we type over and over again: a lengthy street address, your office number, or any other common bit of data you wish would simply flow from your fingertips to your touchscreen.
You can save yourself a ton of tapping by creating your own custom keyboard shortcuts for iOS and Android devices.
How does a keyboard shortcut (or “text expansion,” as it’s also called) work? Here’s an example: if you were to type, say, the letters “mpn” (for “my phone number”), your phone or tablet would immediately substitute the phrase or text string of your choice—like “212-555-1212.”
Image: Ben Patterson
In Android, you create shortcuts in the keyboard’s personal dictionary.
You can get even more creative with keyboard shortcuts if you wish. Boilerplate paragraphs might be a great fit, as well as email signatures, disclaimers, URLs, arcane bits of code. you name it.
Enough of the what and the why of keyboard shortcuts—time for the how.
(Note: These steps work only with the stock Android keyboard. Tap Settings, Language & input, and make sure Google Keyboard is selected under the Keyboard & Input Methods heading.)
Tap Settings, Language & input, then Personal dictionary. Next, tap the language option of your choice.
Tap the + button in the top-right corner of the screen, then type the word or text string that’ll trigger the shortcut. You’re best off picking something other than a common word; for example, “addr” rather than “address.”
In the next line, type in the actual phrase you want to appear when you type the shortcut, such as “1234 Main Street, Anytown USA.” Unfortunately, the phrase is limited to about 50 characters.
Tap the Back button, and you should see your shortcut appear as an entry on the Personal dictionary screen. Tap + to add another shortcut.
Now, let’s test. Compose a new Gmail message and type (for example) “addr” in the body of the message; when you do, you should see your shortcut appear as a text-substitution button just above the keypad.
In iOS, the Keyboard settings includes a list for setting shortcuts.
Bonus tip: Annoyed by Android’s 50-character limit for keyboard shortcuts? There are some third-party Android apps (like Textspansion) that fill the gap, but they’re not nearly as easy to use as Android’s built-in keyboard shortcut feature.
Tap Settings, General, Keyboard, then tap Shortcuts near the bottom of the screen.
You’ll now see a list of all the existing keyboard shortcuts on your iOS device. To add a new one, tap the “+” in the top corner of the screen.
In the “Phrase” field, type the full phrase that you’d like to appear when you tap out a shortcut. The phrase itself can be a short string of numbers or a lengthy block of text; I pasted in a 350-word-plus paragraph without any trouble.
In the “Shortcut” field, tap in the shortcut that’ll trigger the full phrase you just entered; again, try a short string of letters that won’t be easily confused with a common word.
All set? Tap the “Save” button.
Let’s give it a try. Compose a fresh email, type your shortcut, and the phrase you entered should appear as a bubble above the cursor. Tap the space bar, and pop! The phrase will jump into the message, right where your shortcut was.
Ben has been writing about technology and consumer electronics for more than 20 years. A PCWorld contributor since 2014, Ben joined TechHive in 2019, where he covers smart home and home entertainment products.
Text shortcuts are essentially phrases or words you can add to your device’s dictionary and use custom abbreviations to call them when typing instead of having to type them out entirely. Do you type your email a lot? Your street address? Phone number? Maybe you just want to reuse certain phrases like “I love squirrels” (who knows, you might be odd)? Well, all of that can be possible when you employ this little tip.
I. Setup the Shortcuts on your Android Device
First, we need to set up the shortcuts. I used a device with a close to stock Android experience for this, but the settings for this should be in a similar area of your settings on your device. You can also install the Google Keyboard on your Android device to make sure you have these options (simply search for and install the Google Keyboard from the Play Store on your device).
1. Pull down the notification bar and tap the quick settings icon in the top right corner.
2. Tap on Language and Input.
3. Tap on Personal Dictionary.
4. Tap the plus sign in the top right corner.
5. Type whatever word or phrase you want to come up ultimately in the phrase section and put in the abbreviation you want to use in the shortcut section and hit Save.
6. Repeat steps 4 & 5 as many times as necessary until all the phrases/words are saved.
II. Using a Shortcut
1. Open any place that you can use your keyboard (i.e. text messaging, email, web browsing, etc.)
2. Type (or even swipe) in your shortcut and you should see the corresponding word/phrase in show up in the “spelling” suggestions above the keyboard.
3. Either hit the spacebar to automatically input it, or tap it in the suggestions to input it.
You can also use the text shortcuts in Android to play a prank on a friend and say, make the word “hate” appear when typing in “love”, to cause a little confusion the next time they send a message to their significant other and, at the very least, some frustration on their part. What else are we to do as tech savvy friends? Help them with their computer problems? Please…
For other tips and tricks check out our How To’s section.
Google’s ecosystem of services benefits from the vast amount of information the search engine giant has on you. One of such services is Google GBoard which has consistently evolved for the better and is now one of the best keyboards available on Android and iOS today.
It’s there on almost all Android phones but you might not be using it to its full potential. Here are a few Google GBoard Tips and Tricks that you must know to type like a pro.
Note: You will have to access GBoard Settings for many of these features. You can do that by long-pressing the ‘Comma’ key and then tapping the Wheel Icon. You can also access the settings wheel in the top row once you tap the Google Search Button.
How to enable or disable floating Gboard keyboard
A floating keyboard can be a great convenience while typing on big phones or at times when you are doing sensitive work and do not wish the Gboard to hog half of the screen.
To enable a floating keyboard or to turn it off, simply press the triple dot icon in the top row and select the floating keyboard option. If the triple dot icon doesn’t show up in the first row, tap on the directional arrow.
Search and More button
The Google search button on the top can be used for directly searching and verifying tidbits via Google without leaving a particular app, but ‘More’ part is what you should be using more often.
If you don’t see the Google Icon, just go to GBoard Settings>> Search and toggle the option on.
When you tap the Google icon, you will see a row of icons that can be used to:
Change theme – You can directly change the theme of your GBoard. That is to say, you can add key borders, wallpapers, alter backdrop color, or choose a background image from your gallery.
One handed mode – conveniently switch to one handed mode, whenever you need to type using a single hand. You can re-size the keyboard according to your finger span, shift it to left or right and choose from a couple more options. (Can also be triggered by long press on Comma(,) key or the search magnifying class on the bottom right corner.
Cursor control – There is also an option you can use to move cursor or select text using arrow keys, which can come in handy, particularly on compact phones or when you are using just one hand.
Translate – Or you could directly translate text from the GBoard itself.
There are also icons for Voice input and to directly access keyboard settings at the far right end.
Add phrases and shortcuts to GBoard
The text that you use quite often, like your address, contact number or email – can be stored and summoned with the help of simple shortcuts whenever required.
Go to GBoard Settings >> Dictionary>>Personal dictionary>> Select keyboard and tap on ‘+’ to add custom phrase and shortcuts. You can also access settings menu directly by long-pressing comma key.
For instance, you can type your address and choose ‘add’ as a shortcut. Next time, you can just type ‘add’ and pick the entire address from the suggestion bar.
Mastering Select and Cursor Movement
– You can simply swipe Left or right on the space bar to move the cursor. To directly delete text, just swipe left on the GBoard starting from the backspace key.
– You can also tap the Google Icon and then choose the select option in the ‘search and more row’ and use arrow keys to move the cursor or to select text.
Adding number row: We also prefer to have a number key on our keyboard, simply because it’s more convenient than switching to and fro between the QWERTY keyboard and the number pad. You can add a number row on top as follows:
Gboard settings>> Preferences>> and toggle on ‘Number Row’ option under Keys.
Adding fractions – long press any number to get predictive suggestions for fractions
Using number pad – for times when you need to input long Numeric values (say, a win pin code or PNR number), a number pad can come in handy. Just tap the ‘123’ key and then tap the ‘1234’ button to the left of Space par to expand a number pad.
Multiple Language Keyboards/ Switch Language
Love typing in Hindi or another regional language script every now and then? Well, you can keep multiple keyboards and switch between them on the fly.
Go to Gboard keyboard settings>> languages and select preferred keyboard from ‘Active input methods’.
You can conveniently switch between different language keyboards by long pressing the ‘Space Bar’. If you switch between keyboards very often, you can also turn on ‘Show language switch key’ under Gboard settings>> preferences.
Mastering Emojis and GIFs
Add GIFs using Gboard – You can also replace ‘switch language key’ that we talked about earlier with a ‘switch emoji key’. This adds an emoji button which you can use to insert emojis and GIFs. The option is present under Gboard settings>> Preferences>> Keys
Draw emojis – You can also draw emojis with your hand to zero in on what you are searching for. Just tap the pencil icon in the bar on the left corner.
Recent emojis – You can also quickly access recently used Emoji in the top row of the symbol panel. Just go to Gboard settings>> Text correction>> and turn on ‘Show Emoji Suggestions’.
You can also enable your Gboard to evolve on its own by learning your usage behaviour for smarter suggestions. You can toggle the option on by turning on ‘Personalized suggestions’ under Gboard settings>> text correction.