Top third-party Android keyboards (which are not Swype)

Thomas Wellburn
June 3, 2015

Everybody needs a keyboard on their phone but which one should you pick? With so many available it can be hard to decide which one is worth your writing talents. Never fear as we’ve got another top 5, this time focusing on Android keyboards.

All three operating systems have great first-party keyboards but sometimes you want a little change in your life. Third-party keyboards offer a welcome alternative to the standard layout of Android’s built-in version, with different button layouts and subtle size differences. When it comes to keyboards, there’s no one size fits all.

Here’s our rundown of the top 5 Android keyboards you can find:

ai.type (Price: Free Demo/£2.90)


ai.type is billed as the most customisable keyboard you can find and it certainly accomplishes that to good effect. The keyboard can be dynamically resized, fonts can be changed and various background themes can be applied. For non-native English speakers, it also has one of the largest language directories of any keyboard available. A great choice for those outside of the UK or anyone wanting a little extra personalisation.

Fleksy (Price: Free)


Fleksy used to hold the Guinness world record of ‘fastest keyboard’ back in 2014. As a Swype and Swiftkey competitor, it offers fast gesture-based typing with good predictive suggestions. Probably the most unique selling point of Fleksy is its achievement feature, which awards you badges for completing certain criteria. As you get better acquainted with the keyboard you will earn more badges that you can proudly view within the app. While it sounds silly and gimmicky, it’s actually a lot of fun and quite an original idea for a keyboard.

Hacker’s Keyboard (Price: Free)

hackers keyboard

Having a small but very loyal following, the Hackers Keyboard is a great tool for people who miss the dedicated keyboards that you get on Windows PC’s. In portrait mode there isn’t too much difference, but flip it to landscape you’ll find a fully fledges keyboard with shortcuts galore. It changes the design to include all the keys you would expect to find on your keyboard at home, including the directional arrows. For those who want a more faithful typing experience, Hackers Keyboard is the perfect tool to get more out of your Android device.

Swiftkey (Price: Free with in-app purchases)


Swiftkey is one of the most popular keyboards on Android and a direct competitor to Swype. Swiftkey takes things a little further by introducing its own cloud-powered prediction software. The app stores ‘learned language’ online and then uses it to help you out when you have a data connection. It even links with your social media accounts to learn your typing style and word preferences. In practice, this makes typing with Swiftkey incredibly quick, so long as you have a signal.

Whirlscape Minuum (Price: Free Demo/£2.59)


Minuum is a fully adaptable keyboard that can be either full or micro-sized. The crazy thing about Minuum is that it manages to squeeze an entire QWERTY keyboard onto a single line, using various predictive methods and gesture controls for spacing and paragraphs to assist your typing. The basic concept is simple. The alphabet is split into sets of three letters which are arranged along the bottom of the screen. To type a word, pick the groups which contain the required letters. Then the predictive text will handle the rest. The most impressive thing about Minuum is how it all works so naturally, with the keyboard nailing almost everything you throw at it.

For more on Android, visit What Mobile’s dedicated Android page.

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