Bonnie Cha

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SwiftKey Cloud Brings Your Favorite Slang Terms to All of Your Devices

SwiftKey, makers of the popular Android keyboard app, today unveiled a new cloud service that will help users have a more personalized typing experience across all of their gadgets.


Called SwiftKey Cloud, the service backs up all the custom phrases and personal writing habits it has learned as you’ve used the keyboard, and then syncs it across your various devices when you sign into your SwiftKey account. This way you don’t have to retrain the keyboard whenever you get a new smartphone or tablet.

Users can choose to back up and sync to SwiftKey cloud on an hourly, daily or weekly basis, or whenever they’re connected to a Wi-Fi network. For those concerned about privacy, all the data is transmitted in a proprietary binary format and sent through encrypted channels, where it’s stored on Amazon EC2 services.

In addition, SwiftKey Cloud also brings a new Trending Phrases feature, which updates the keyboard’s predictive-word database on a daily basis with names and terms that are currently trending on Twitter and other news sources.

“We understand that what’s important in your world may not just be your pet’s name or your favorite slang phrases,” said Joe Braidwood, SwiftKey’s chief marketing officer, in an interview with AllThingsD. “It might also be what’s happening around you, so we wanted to provide a contextual trending directory that would allow you to converse about what’s happening that day, whether it be news, sports or entertainment.”

Trending Phrases will first be available for 13 different languages, including English (U.S. and U.K.), Spanish, French, German, Italian and Korean, with more coming soon (SwiftKey currently supports 60 languages). Braidwood also said the company is working on refining this feature, so it can offer results by location, not just language.

If you’re unfamiliar with SwiftKey, the virtual keyboard is different from many standard software keyboards in that it learns your typing habits and vocabulary as you use it. The company’s language-recognition engine can also predict what you’ll write next, based on context. You can read my review of the keyboard here.

SwiftKey certainly isn’t the only third-party keyboard to offer these types of features. Swype and Thumb Keyboard are just two of the alternatives out there, but Braidwood said what makes SwiftKey different is that it learns organically and continually adapts to your writing habits. So, for example, after it learns a word or phrase but notices you’re using it less and less over time, SwiftKey won’t surface it as a top predictive result, compared to the iPhone’s keyboard, which always displays the word.

For SwiftKey, SwiftKey Cloud is just the next step in delivering a more intelligent and personalized keyboard to its users. If you’re interested in taking SwiftKey Cloud for a test drive, you can sign up to be a beta user on SwiftKey’s website. The company hopes to make it available to everyone within a month.

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