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How to Add Custom Text Shortcuts to Android


If you find yourself typing the same email addresses, phrases, or sentences over and over again, stop—there’s an easier way! By adding a quick text shortcut to your Android phone’s personal dictionary, you can type a full sentence with just a few letters.

You may not be able to think of certain things you type repeatedly, but if you pay a bit of attention, you’ll definitely find some patterns. Text shortcuts can be super beneficial in a variety of situations:

  • Email addresses
  • Names/addresses/phone numbers
  • Common phrases: “I’ll call you in a second,” “where are you?,” “lunch today?,” etc.
  • Complex symbols or emoticons (like ಠ_ಠ)

Sound good? Here’s how to do it.

To get started, you’ll first need to jump into your phone’s settings menu. Pull down the notification shade and tap the cog icon, or open the app drawer and find “Settings.”


From there, scroll down until you see “Languages & input” (or something similar).


In the Languages & input menu, select the “Personal Dictionary” option.


Here, you can add custom bits of text by tapping the plus sign in the upper right corner. To add a shortcut to said text, use the “Shortcut” field.

Screenshot_20161017-095941 Screenshot_20161017-095948

Boom, that’s it! Now when you type the shortcut, the text option you entered will show up as a suggestion–it won’t automatically replace the text in most cases, so you’ll have to tap the suggestion.

Screenshot_20161017-100003 Screenshot_20161017-100009

It’s worth mentioning that, depending on what keyboard you use as your default, this setting may or may not actually work the way you want it to. For example, Google Keyboard will reference this setting, so any shortcuts you add will show up. But if you use something like SwiftKey, it won’t work. Bummer.

Screenshot_20161017-100812 Screenshot_20161017-101701

Cameron Summerson Cameron Summerson
Cameron Summerson is the Editor in Chief of Review Geek and serves as an Editorial Advisor for How-To Geek and LifeSavvy. He’s been covering technology for nearly a decade and has written over 4,000 articles and hundreds of product reviews in that time. He’s been published in print magazines and quoted as a smartphone expert in the New York Times.
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