My favorite iPhone/iPad feature that you aren’t using

April 23rd, 2012 § 2 comments

If you have ever tried to type “omw” on an iPhone or iPad you may have been surprised that it was replaced with “On my way!”. This is the default keyboard shortcut that came with iOS 5 when it launched last September alongside the iPhone 4S. Given the slew of other features and the esoteric history of “keyboard shortcuts” it is no surprise that they didn’t get much attention but I have come up with a few that I find incredible useful.

iOS Shortcuts

iOS Shortcuts 1

The ones on top are not terribly interesting. “np” being replaced by “No Problem!” fixes an auto-correct that was the bane of my existence for a time. Someone would text me with a “thank you” and I would reply “np” and hit send. Since “p” is right next to “o” auto-correct would ever so helpfully change it to “no” right before it sent the message which is kind of the opposite of “no problem”. I replaced “lol” with “that is hilarious” because typing lol is very easy but being something of an old school nerd I can’t stand that phrase anymore. I rarely use fmin because I don’t remember it.

The most useful shortcuts are “@@”, “1321” and “sb”. Using “@@” to enter your email address is a great time saver and it ensures that you don’t mistype your email address. It wasn’t until I added this shortcut that I realized how often I have to type my email address. If the form was built properly you will even get an @ key on the first screen of the keyboard. No “shift” required. “1321” is great because I don’t have to remember it. I just start typing my mailing address and bam! “sb”, “la”, “sf” & “nyc” are great city replacements as well. I almost made one for my zipcode before I realized it would save me nothing.

How To

To add your own shortcuts do the following on your iPhone or iPad

  1. Tap Settings on your home screen
  2. Tap General
  3. Scroll down to Keyboard and tap it
  4. Tap Shortcuts and then the + button in the top right

One thing I found confusing at first was that you type the phrase (eg: 1321 Main St) first, and then you type the shortcut (eg: 1321). Perhaps this makes perfect sense to you but for me it was completely backwards.

  1. This isn't what the screen actually looks like, I stripped out all the ridiculous address book type organization so I could fit it all on one screenshot so to speak. Looks better don't you think? []

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