iOS 8 is here and it's brought...third-party keyboards! Seriously, I believe this is going to be a big deal, and we'll have a look at several options as they start coming in. But first, I want to show you all Fleksy.
Fleksy is recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as being the fastest keyboard. But it's not just about speed. Fleksy is customizable, resizable and predictive. It supports gestures too, which goes a long way towards making you fast and accurate. Here's a look at Fleksy for iOS 8.
Customization - colors
Right away you'll notice that Fleksy looks quite unlike the iOS keyboard, be it iOS 8 or otherwise. The keys are quite flat in design and lack a distinct border. But that's just the start. You can choose from five colored themes, plus premium themes. It seems odd to have that level of customization over a keyboard in iOS, but it actually looks pretty nice.
Customization - size
Here's another cool trick. You can shrink the Fleksy keyboard to a layout that's smaller than the default. Specifically, you can either hide the spacebar/shift keys/number button/Return key and leave yourself just with the letters. It's a neat little trick, and the shrunken keyboard takes up even less space on the iPhone 6's half-acre of screen space.
I'll admit that I've been envious of my Android-wielding friends' options for keyboards, especially all the gestures. With a swipe, they can create whole words, move things around and more. Finally, Fleksy brings some of that functionality to iOS.
First, you can delete by swiping left. That reminds me of Graffiti on my old Palm IIIe. How I loved that thing. But I digress. Fleksy gestures also let you add a space with a swipe or punctuation.
Emoji fans will be delighted to find over 800 of the little guys build into Fleksy. It also supports more than 40 languages as well as QWERTY, DVORAK, AZERTY and COLEMAK layouts.
I'm excited to see where third-party keyboards go on iOS. If Fleksy is any indication, it's going to be a fun, active category of app for quite some time.