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Text Expander

Do you often type the same phrase or phrases in your computer applications?

Take advantage of a feature called Text Expander (Apple calls them “Shortcuts”) to summon these phrases without typing them each time; just type a few letters and the whole phrase appears.

If I frequently type my email address, I might make a shortcut “em1” that represents my extended email address:the.it.girl.llc@gmail.com

To set up a shortcut on the iPad and iPhone:

  • Settings > General > Keyboard
  • Scroll to the bottom and tap “Add new shortcut”
  • Type the words or phrase in the top box
  • Type the shortcut in the bottom box.
  • Tap “Save”

Now, in an email, note, text, or search engine, type the shortcut characters and the expanded phrase appears in a bubble below your text. Tap the space bar to accept the expanded text.

Be sure your shortcut is not a combination of letters you would otherwise type; you will summon your expanded text when you don’t want it. ( Tap the “x” in the bubble to reject the expanded text)

Pretty cool!? Even cooler is that these shortcuts are iCloud-based; if you create a shortcut on your iPad, it will also work on your iPhone.

Many computers, tablets, and smartphones have this feature built-in, but if yours doesn’t, you can purchase a third-party app or program to include it.

Enjoy more efficient typing!