Apple's autocorrect is a mess.
Starting our fourth decade: Al Fasoldt's reviews and commentaries, continuously online for 31 years

Apple's goofy autocorrect.

Android has a better autocorrect

July 6, 2014

By Al Fasoldt
Copyright © 2014, Al Fasoldt
Copyright © 2014, The Post-Standard

Apple's "iDevices" -- iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch -- have earned the righteous wrath of countless users because of the abysmal way they perform autocorrect. The idea behind this function is to take over the keyboard and automatically complete a word you are trying to type.

Such a function would be great if it worked. Or, ahem, if it worked most of the time. But Apple's autocorrect is a mess. You can even find blogs and websites devoted to the wacky world of Apple's unpredictability. One user sent a message with the words "Lard Ashcan" when what he was trying to type was "Kardashian." (Maybe Apple knows something we don't?)

Sure, it's funny to read the wayward autocorrects. But it's not funny when Apple's mistakes look like yours, nor is it cool to waste your time trying to get autocorrect to stop insisting on its version of a word. No matter how hard you try, no matter how many times you back up over an incorrect word completion, autocorrect usually insists on its nonsensical out-of-the-blue rendering.

This is one reason I hate typing anything longer than an address line on my iPad. Another reason is the keyboard itself; to my way of thinking, it's about as stupid as anything can be, showing capital letters on the keycaps when I'm typing lower case letters, for example.

My Android phone and tablets don't do that. When I'm typing in capitals, the keycaps are capitals. When I'm typing normally, the keycaps are lower case.

What's even more impressive is the cleverness of Android's autocorrect. First, it guesses much better than Apple's version of autocorrect. Second, instead of simply popping in its own guess, right or wrong, the latest version of Android's autocorrect shows you the likely word you're starting to type along with others that fit the context. The likely choice is highlighted in bold, and you don't have to type any more letters if that's the right word; you simply press the spacebar.

If another word displayed is the right one, you just tap it and keep on typing. That's cool.

You might already know that Android has dozens of keyboards you can choose from. But what I find fascinating is the way the already talented autocorrect can be enhanced just by changing keyboards. In Android, keyboard software can include a new or specialized autocorrect system. If you've never upgraded the keyboard on your Android device, install the free Google keyboard from the Play Store. It has the latest autocorrect.

In little things, too, Android's keyboards excel. You'll find both the exclamation mark and the question mark on the lower-case portion of the Google keyboard, as just one example. There's little doubt that Apple has some catching up to do.