Get help with your keyboard on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

iOS supports multiple languages and dialects, offering international keyboards and dictionaries. You can use the built-in keyboards in all apps, and you can change between multiple international keyboards.

Customize your keyboard

Unlike physical keyboards, you can change the format of a software keyboard. This will also change the dictionary used for auto-correction, the number of letters on the keyboard, and the arrangement of the keys (for languages with alternative keyboard layouts). The language of the keyboard also determines the language of the dictionary used for predictive text. Predictive text is available with software keyboards only.

You can add keyboards from Settings > General > Keyboard > Keyboards.

HT4474 iPhone and iPod Touch iOS 7 International Keyboards

With some languages, you can change the key layout by tapping the language from Settings > General > Keyboard > Keyboards, and selecting a language and then a layout.

HT4509 iPhone and iPod Touch iOS 7 Software Keyboards

iOS allows you to choose between multiple keyboard layouts to match the keys on your physical keyboard. You also have the option to use an alternative keyboard layout that doesn't match the keys on your physical keyboard. 

HT4509 iPhone and iPod Touch iOS 7 Hardware Keyboards

Change the language

If more than one language is on, you can change the language while typing. Follow these steps:

  • Tap   to choose the next language on your keyboard. The chosen language appears on the Space bar. 
  • Touch and hold   to display a menu of enabled keyboards. Drag to choose a new keyboard. 

In iOS 6 and later, the language of the keyboard determines the language of the dictionary, if one is available for the language.

Define a word

To get the definition of a word, select the word and tap Define. The dictionary is a feature of the software keyboard only. 

The dictionary is available in these languages:

  • English
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Spanish
  • Dutch
  • Portuguese (Brazil)
  • Russian
  • Thai
  • Turkish

Use predictive text with QuickType

With iOS, you can write and complete entire sentences with a few taps. As you type, you'll see choices for words and phrases you'd probably type next, based on your past conversations and writing style. 


Predictive text works with these languages:

  • English (U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, and India)
  • French (France, Switzerland, and Canada)
  • German (Germany and Switzerland)
  • Italian
  • Portuguese (Brazil)
  • Spanish
  • Thai
  • Chinese (Simplified and Traditional)
  • Japanese

Hide and/or reveal QuickType bar

The QuickType bar gives you three word or phrase options to use while you're writing a message. To show the bar, swipe up. To hide the bar, swipe down. 


Turn off predictive text

To turn off predictive text tap   or press and hold   and tap Predictive. 

You can also turn off predictive text in Settings > General > Keyboard > Predictive. 


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