SwiftKey iOS keyboard

This keyboard is amazing. It allows me to type incredibly fast compared to even the iOS 8 keyboard – with one hand! And yet it still manages to be more accurate than my regular typing on the built in iOS keyboard.


There are some issues but I think they are mostly on Apple’s behalf not Swiftkey’s. The two issues I have noticed so far are : 1. The text field for App Store reviews is obscured with SwiftKey active (not sure if that is the same for other third party keyboards), 2. The keyboard is slow to load in some cases.

Another thing to bear in mind is that the keyboard has access to anything you type so Apple prevents the keyboard from being used when you input a password into the App store etc. That is fine by me and I think a sensible move in general. You will therefore need to have a regular iOS keyboard available as an option for entering passwords.

Some users are confused about the security considerations when using the keyboard

Based on a number of the reviews in the App Store I think that some users are confused about the security considerations when using the keyboard. Concerns were voiced in the reviews about the developers being able to access various data from users. Of course the app needs access to what a user types, how else will it receive input? The developers probably also need to process the input data so that their predictive algorithm can be improved. That kind of process is a common and acceptable use of data.

Also most people entrust their confidential data to tech companies on a daily basis. Swiftkey is another such reputable tech company. It is strange to single it out in the way that some reviewers have in the absence of factual evidence.

Apple’s privacy notice/warning is broad enough so that everyone is informed about the type of data the app has access to. The notice does not mean that Swiftkey employees will be trawling through confidential data so they can sell it to advertisers.

I have been enjoying my time using SwiftKey – including writing this post – I’m sure you will too!

Do you have any thoughts about Swiftkey’s access to user data? Or other keyboard developers for that matter?


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