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App of the Week: FlexT9

This isn’t the first time we’ve done a keyboard replacement as an App of the Week, but hey, we use keyboards so much that it doesn’t hurt to have options right? Options are great, and the reason this keyboard is so great is because it incorporates so many different ways to input text. FlexT9 is one of the most fully-featured keyboards that I have come across in a while.

There are several different ways to use a keyboard with Android First there are traditional tap keyboards, then we have speech-to-text, and also the “slide-to-type” style that resembles Swype. All of these keyboards are great options, and sometimes it can be difficult to choose which one you actually want to stick with. FlexT9 eliminates this problem by combining all three and adding the option to write-to-text.

The whole idea seems sort of hard to pull off, but FlexT9 does it, and does it well. When I first downloaded the app I didn’t even realize that I could slide-to-type. I just tapped as I would any other keyboard. Then FlexT9 displayed a little message telling me to slide my fingers across the keyboard. Just like that, I was sliding and absolutely loving the fact that I could go back to typing whenever I wanted, without changing my keyboard. Not only can you tap and slide, but you can click the little pencil icon to write. I was never fond of this feature on other keyboards, but I must say, FlexT9 does it best out of every keyboard that I have used. The letters that you write quickly disappear, and you can easily just write to text. Sure this isn’t the fastest way to input text, but it can be very useful in certain situations. All of these features are great, and all of them are included in other keyboards, but FlexT9 puts them all in one easy-to-use keyboard.

As a smartphone keyboard, one of the main things we expect our keyboards to do is predict text. This is one of FlexT9’s brightest moments, because the text prediction is fantastic. I can go from sliding to tapping to speaking in one sentence and FlexT9 gets every word right almost all of the time. Yes, there are some times when it will predict the wrong word when sliding, but a lot of times that is just user error or not being accurate enough. This app can falter a little when being compared to Swype, but it isn’t by much. When looking at it from a long-term usage standpoint, this keyboard can predict text very well, and it really impressed me how consistent it can be through the changing of ways to input text.

FlexT9 is a great keyboard, and while it may not be the best in one certain area its large amount of features make up for whatever other issues may be present. The overall look and feel of the keyboard is good, and there really isn’t much of a problem with it force closing or not responding. Overall this is a great keyboard to use, and anyone that can’t decide which type of keyboard to use should definitely try it out. Heck, even if you can decide which type of keyboard to use you should try it out. You can get FlexT9 in the market for $4.99 here.

about the writer: Elijah Ketchum is a 16 year old sophomore in High School in Cincinnati OH. His Android experience started with the Motorola Droid. He enjoys everything about Android and convincing his iPhone fan boy classmates to switch. He recently convinced his father, a long term Blackberry user to switch to a Motorola Droid X. Like Elijah’s writing? Have questions? email and follow him on Twitter @ElijahIsMe

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