Google Keyboard gets even better with Android N

A couple of weeks ago, Google Keyboard received an update, which added a number of really cool features, such as keyboard resizing and optional key borders (finally?). Additionally, Google added some nice gestures, which we've seen in other keyboards – swiping left from the backspace will delete whole words (the further you swipe, the more words you delete), and swiping across the spacebar will let you scroll the text cursor between letters for more precise input.

Checking out Google Keyboard on Android N – it becomes apparent that we have a whole new menu dedicated to customization of the keyboard. It's a theme selector, which contains 13 different color combos for the keyboard, together with the option to place any custom image as a background.

Other recent new features include long-pressing suggestions to delete them from your dictionary, one-handed mode, and gesture typing in a number of different languages. These are available for your regular old stable Android builds, so go ahead and give Google Keyboard another chance if you were a bit disappointed by it in the past.

Google Keyboard on the Play Store

via: Phandroid



1. GreenMan

Posts: 2698; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

Still no virtual joystick ala Windows 10 Mobile...? Man, Android is TOO far behind...!

2. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

HTC's inbuilt keyboard has it so does Samsung's. Not to mention several 3rd party keyboards do that. Try harder.

17. FriendlyFoe09

Posts: 82; Member since: Jan 09, 2012

Virtual joysticks are nice and all but pointless if there are no apps to use them on.

10. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

Is this sarcasm? I can't really tell....

3. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

Awesome. Android keyboard is my favorite one.

4. Landon

Posts: 1248; Member since: May 07, 2015

I use SwiftKey 100% of the time. Does anyone have experience with both SwiftKey and Google keyboard? If so, which one do you prefer?

8. Nutcase4u2

Posts: 48; Member since: Oct 15, 2015

I was also a SwiftKey 100% user, and recently switched to Google keyboard about a week or two ago. I slide to text all the time, and the Google keyboard is MUCH more accurate in interpreting words that I swype. Google doesn't have much in the customizing arena yet, but it's a solid clean keyboard that replaced SwiftKey flow for least for now.

12. Jango

Posts: 376; Member since: Oct 24, 2014

I've used both and I stuck with Google. It's a no brainer for me. 1. Google is way more accurate 2. I found Google to be more responsive 3. Google looks more polished, more minimalistic or flat.

13. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

I've never used Swift, but I've been using Google keyboard for the past several years and maybe it is missing a feature or two that other 3rd party keyboards offer, but anyone who says that it's not customizable has clearly never attempted to look into the matter. If you're interested in trying it out, there's nothing preventing you from switching back if it doesn't suit you. I personally love Google's keyboard. It works great and swiping to type works awesome.

14. LionStone

Posts: 1048; Member since: Dec 10, 2010

Go back and forth every now and then but lately I've been on Google's, probably stay here especially after the last update and also not to far away from getting N

15. shahrooz

Posts: 792; Member since: Sep 17, 2013

I've been going back and forth on these two, after the last update I've been sticking to Google keyboard since it added feature typing support for my native language. Accuracy on both languages are better on Google keyboard, native language is not even comparable! I'm totally impressed by Google. Bravo, a much needed update.

16. shahrooz

Posts: 792; Member since: Sep 17, 2013

I mean gesture typing :P the whole comment was done with gesture typing including this one, only one error.


Posts: 442; Member since: Mar 15, 2013

Still missing that numbers row like Samsung's keyboard

6. Tronlol

Posts: 35; Member since: Feb 06, 2015

Umad kid

11. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

No it's not. You Google's keyboard is fully customizable, this is also anything but a new feature. Here's an article from over a year ago on how to add it.

19. Landon

Posts: 1248; Member since: May 07, 2015

In regards to using my Note 5 and going through the screens in the link you provided, I'm not seeing the same settings. I too would like a number row on the Google Keyboard. How do I get there?

20. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

That's a good question, I'm not overly familiar with Samsung skins, and I know from my wife's phone that they really mix things up quite a bit in regards to their menus. I have the Nexus 6P and after a quick glance over the menu, I determined that nothing has changed from a stock OS standpoint on how to perform this change. I would just keep searching for Language & Input settings and then keyboard settings from there. Try a web search or Youtube search if you don't have any luck.

7. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I just got the update yesterday, and so far I'm not impressed. It has very erratic behavior. For instance if I hold the backspace key down to erase some text, it will jump a few characters. By that I mean if I go to erase a word like impossible, when I hold down the backspace key, after it deletes a few characters, all of a sudden the letters "ble" at the end of impossible are behind the cursor, so I have to manually move the cursor back to delete those characters. Another quirk I have seen is that if I have to change multiple areas, I'll do the first area, then move the cursor to another area and out of nowhere it goes back to the first area. So if I'm not watching, the word I wanted to type in the second area is being typed in the first area, many times in the middle of another word. I'm hoping it just needs a while to settle out, but if this is how it's going to be going forward, I may have to find a replacement keyboard. Right now it seems like a major step back in terms of accuracy. Granted I'm not on using any of the Android N previews, but if it needs N for it to work they should've held off updating it until N drops. To give you an idea of how this is affecting my typing, I've had the cursor randomly jump around 5 times while typing this post. Driving me nuts!

9. therealestmc

Posts: 680; Member since: Jul 23, 2012

Swiftkey and the iPhone keyboard remain the best keyboards I have ever used.

18. NickC

Posts: 5; Member since: May 18, 2010

I was really excited for Google Keyboard 5.0, especially because of the height adjustment option (always found it to be way too tall). So far, I still find SwiftKey to be more accurate and easier even though I like some of the features of GK more. Has anyone found inconsistencies in the autocorrect? My typing is pretty sloppy. Sometimes it corrects the gibberish but other times it leaves it.

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