How-To Geek

How to Add a Persistent Number Row to Android’s Gboard Keyboard

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Ever get annoyed that you don’t have an entire row of numbers atop your Android keyboard? It makes typing things like passwords—which should always have at least one number in them—far more annoying. Fortunately, Google heard the cry and made this an option in the latest Gboard keyboard.

Aside from the aforementioned password scenario, there are a number of other reasons why you may want to make the number row always-visible on your phone. For example, if you use your phone for work-related email or text messages and your job deal with numbers. Or, you know, if you just want it there. You don’t have to justify it to me—do what you want, man.

So, if you’re ready to commit to this number row thing, let’s get started.

First things first—make sure you’re on the latest version of Google Keyboard, now called Gboard. Then, go ahead and open Gboard’s settings. If you’ve used our previous tutorial on adding a Google Keyboard shortcut to the app drawer, then that’ll still be in effect after the Gboard update, just note that the shortcut will now be labeled as “Gboard.”

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If you haven’t enabled the shortcut, no worries. Just open any app with a text field, then long-press the button to the left of the spacebar. From there, slide over the cog icon, then select “Gboard Keyboard Settings” from the window that pops up.

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In Gboard’s Settings menu, tap the “Preferences” option.

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The top option under the Keys section is “Number row.” Toggle that little guy.

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That’s pretty much it—the number row will now show up all the time. Easy, right? Yeah. But if you ever get sick of that number row—it does take up more space, after all—you can just follow these instructions to disable it. Boom.

Cameron Summerson is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, metalhead, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys on the 'net, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, chugging away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

  • Published 01/5/17

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