News: This Is the Best Swype Alternative for iPhone & Android

This Is the Best Swype Alternative for iPhone & Android

We regret to inform you the former king of third-party keyboards, Swype, has officially retired on both Android and iOS. A few weeks ago, we noticed Swype's mysterious disappearance from the iOS App Store but had hoped it was just pulled temporarily, not gone forever. Unfortunately, Swype is no more, but there's something that's ready to take its place for you on your phone.

If you've been using Swype since its birth, maybe this breaking news isn't such a shock. Swype's devoted userbase had sensed that the keyboard's quality had gotten worse over time. Comments on various forums and message boards highlighted the public's disappointment with the once great glide-typer.

When Swype first arrived, my phone's screen (and thus the keyboard) was smaller than screens today. Yet, I seem to recall Swype's accuracy as pretty darn good. These days (past year or so?) it seems worse than ever.

— Lone Shepard/Ars Technica

I am using Gboard due to Swype's auto correct being highly inaccurate and with poor word prediction.

Has Swype been more frustrating for anyone else since the recent update?

SWYPE IS GARBAGE ... [I] wish [I] could remove this update...

— Lerouxsr/Ars Technica

I thought it was just me. Thought I forgot how to Swype ... it's been bad.

Swype did issue an update last month, which addressed some of its users' qualms. While it wasn't perfect, the overall experience was improved, and at the time, things seemed promising. However, it seems promise doesn't keep a keyboard going.

Images by Swype/Google Play

Losing a major application is tough for everyone, but some fans will have extra cause for annoyance: Swype wasn't free for everyone. Some Android users and all iPhone users paid $0.99 for access (the Android one had a free ad-supported version). If you purchased themes available in Swype's store, there's also that.

While it's unlikely you will get a refund if you've been using Swype for years, you might be able to get one if you bought it right before it disappeared from the app stores. Nuance, Swype's parent, has not mentioned anything about refunds.

Why You Should Go with Gboard Now

In its wake, Swype has left behind a variety of third-party keyboards, each vying for your downloads. We're here to tell you the only one you need to consider is Gboard.

Whether you're on iOS or Android, Gboard is the best third-party keyboard for your phone. It's glide-typing might not quite reach the heights that Swype set, however, you'll be hard-pressed to find a better typing experience on either platform's app stores.

What Gboard managed to achieve over Swype is an array of useful, integrated features. GIF and Emoji keyboards with search, a GIF-maker, Google searches, Google Maps, the list goes on and on. All of these options and functions can be achieved directly in-keyboard, without needing to open a separate app or page.

Making GIFs (left), available themes (middle), and searching for GIFs (right). Image by Justin Meyers/Gadget Hacks

This simple idea really speeds up the amount of time it takes to send a friend an address, find a funny reaction GIF, or even send a simple emoji. Gboard is a keyboard that not only has excellent glide typing but also saves you time and energy throughout the day.

Search for emoji (left), search Google (middle), and text shortcuts (right). Image by Dallas Thomas/Gadget Hacks

If you're feeling the sting of loss today, try out Gboard. It might just make you forget all about Swype. Especially since Gboard is frequently updated with new and exciting features all of the time, something Swype failed to do in its later years.

Cover image by Jake Peterson/Gadget Hacks

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