YouTube link for mobile viewing

SlideIT is currently in its fourth iteration, and with that comes the introduction of skins. Scoff as you might, customization and aesthetic appeal are important to lots of people out there, so I've got to tip my hat to the SlideIT developers for making that so easy to do.

How does SlideIT function as a line-tracing keyboard, though? On its own, alright. If there's one thing SlideIT has going for it, it's that it's fast. I'm not just talking a little quick here and there. It feels like as soon as you're even thinking about being done with a word, SlideIT is ready to toss it out there. It's kind of uncanny and hard to describe what makes it feel so instant, but it does.

As far as word prediction goes, this is where I think SlideIT has room to improve (at least when compared to Swype). Word that are a couple of letters long (three to five), no problem. SlideIT has no problems spelling "it" or "that" or "looks," but it felt like once I got past words of five letters, accuracy went out the window. No, I meant to spell "fantastic." Was my trace so far off that it really deserves "??" as a prediction?

Other than that, there's not much to say. SlideIT is a keyboard, and a keyboard's for typing things out. Long-pressing works fine, and auto-spacing is all customizable via the settings menu. There's also a whole slew of language packs that can be downloaded from the Market, which is a good alternative to having to pick between all languages supported or just English and Spanish.

Overall, it feels like SlideIT is on the right track. There's a lot of good ideas there (ones I wouldn't mind seeing Swype eventually adopt), but until the prediction is better, it's not something I'd use normally. There's also the price to consider. SlideIT has a 15-day free trial, but after that, you're laying down $6.40 for the whole package. Again, language packs and skins are free.

We've got download links after the break.

 
There are 24 comments

dchawk81 says:

Am I the only one who feels that hacking away at a set of keys the traditional way is still faster and more accurate?

jescobe82 says:

Agreed

Joshua Munoz says:

If I'm using SwiftKey... maybe. Otherwise, I'm much faster with Swype.

dchawk81 says:

Josh, your third paragraph seems to imply that you rely on word prediction quite a bit when using swipe keyboards vs traditional tap keyboards. What do you do when you have to lay down a password or username that the keyboard would have no way of knowing to use prediction? What about slang or jargon?

Joshua Munoz says:

For usernames that aren't words, you can just add it to the dictionary as one word (since usernames don't have spaces in them). That makes entering pretty simple. For passwords, I peck, but that's because I try to have pretty complicated passwords that there's no way you could swipe/Swype through. Honestly, I'm not sure you can Swype in a password field, anyway. Never tried. For slang or jargon, if you manually punch it in once, it gives you the option to add it to the dictionary. From there on in, it's pretty solid on predicting the slang.

All you need to do is write your password in an sms, then add it to your dictionary. My pasword has a number and a semicolon and I'm still able to swype it into my password field. Talk about life changing.

stevozip says:

No, you're not. When the last update to Skype came up, I uninstalled to upgrade like they said to do and the installer program broke apparently, because I keep getting a bad parsing error. I quit trying after 5 attempts over three days to get it working and I'm finding I like the normal way of texting a lot better anyway.

Joshua Munoz says:

If your "No, you're not" is directed at me, I'm sorry, you're mistaken. Yes, I am.

stevozip says:

Nah, I was replying to dchawk81's comment.

Agreed

ropodawg says:

Been using slideit for awhile now and I love it. Sure there are word prediction issues. But actually I am more accurate than with regular typing... though I always tend to re-read my input before I submit. Tried swype and did not like it as much. After using slideit for awhile I found that I was much faster than regular typing. And cost was worth it - thats from someone who almost NEVER buys apps.

lionsson says:

I went thru all the hassle if installing the trial and the language packs just so I can swipe half a word and notifying me that my trial was expired. That told new all I needed to know about that company.

Slideit works great for me.. like ropodawg said, sometimes you have to double check the word, but its usually 95% accurate for me & yes swype sucked, there is no auto space, well at least it doesn't work for the downloaded version. What good is that if you have to click the space bar after every word typed.. These key boards are supposed to be faster & the actual swype was slower than me actually typing with a regular key board.. Anyway I highly recommend it..

Joshua Munoz says:

There is definitely auto-spacing on Swype. It's the second option down under the "Swype Advanced Settings" portion of the settings menu.

banhim says:

And this right here is an example of why there are alot of moronic reviews in the Market. People can't bother to get familiar with an app before they go yapping and badmouthing apps.

The space option is pretty easy to find if you bothered to look and set up your app before you use it. But if you want OVER-simplicity, Apple is that way -->

kareden says:

I signed up for the SlideIt trial when my Swype keyboard stopped working due to some licensing issues. I agree with this review. I really like the customization options for SlideIt and I thought the prediction element was fine. The swiping/prediction elements of Swype were just that much better. When Swype upgraded to version 3.25, I decided to reinstall Swype, and I am glad I did.

Sorry meant to say the auto spacing on swype doesn't work on the downloaded version.. Its a bug they can't figure out for some reason.. I true the 30 day SlideIT & it worked perfectf for me

Maybe swype fixed the auto spacing issue now, not sure, this was a month ago & I know a lot can happen in a month

thegreatheed says:

You may 'feel' that traditional typing is faster and more accurate, but your feeling would be wrong. The texting world record was set with swype, so, empirically, swype is faster and more accurate.

Nirvana328 says:

Swype might be empirically faster, but it doesn't feel faster and that's what's more important to me. If I have to do finger acrobatics and work up a sweat and spend more time thinking about how I am going to type than what I am going to type, then it's not worth it to me.

I used Swype for a long time but after so many people kept talking about SwiftKey I gave it a shot and I'm much happier with the quality of the typing experience. My fingers are not going 1000 miles and hour just to make circles and I can focus on writing instead of the mechanical act of typing. I'm pretty happy with SwiftKey, slower or not. It feels more natural (and thus faster) and if I feel like it's faster then I'll feel happy about it, so kudos to Swiftkey.

Joshua Munoz says:

SwiftKey is a great product. Like I mentioned earlier, the only non-swiping keyboard I'll use is SwiftKey X. It takes a little adjusting, but there's definitely a nice groove to it's predictions as well.

jamesd413 says:

Is this better than Touchpal?

mawil1013 says:

I bought it after trying it out and I think it does a very good job, I'd recommend it to anyone.

I have been using SlideIT since it came out. It is great and keeps getting better with every update. The key to SlideIT is that it gets better at prediction the more you use it. I tried Swype, but it never seemed as fast or accurate for me. SlideIT recognizes my sloppy sliding a lot better. Swift Key is good too, but I am addicted to sliding!