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How to change the keyboard on your Android phone

Gboard Keyboard Pixel 4 Hero
Gboard Keyboard Pixel 4 Hero (Image credit: Android Central)

Most stock keyboards on Android are pretty great, but whether you're after more customization options, want a new layout, or anything else in between, switching to a new keyboard takes just a few taps and a little bit of patience. Need some help figuring this out? Here's a step-by-step guide on exactly what this process looks like.

Products used in this guide

  • The Google phone: Google Pixel 4 (opens in new tab) (From $627 at Amazon)

How to download a new keyboard

First thing's first, you need to download a new keyboard from the Play Store. Let's get that knocked out.

  1. Open the Google Play Store on your phone.
  2. Search "keyboard".
  3. Choose whichever keyboard you want to download (we're using SwiftKey for this example).
  4. Tap Install.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

How to change your keyboard

Now that you've downloaded a keyboard (or two) you want to try, here's how to start using it.

  1. Open the Settings on your phone.
  2. Scroll down and tap System.
  3. Tap Languages & input.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

  1. Tap Virtual keyboard.
  2. Tap Manage keyboards.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

  1. Tap the toggle next to the keyboard you just downloaded.
  2. Tap OK.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

  1. Open your keyboard (this can be in your texting app, Gmail, Google Search — anything that opens the keyboard).
  2. Tap the keyboard icon in the bottom-right corner.
  3. Tap the keyboard you want to switch to.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

And with that, you're done! If you ever want to switch back to your old keyboard, just follow the steps above. Happy typing!

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Andrew Myrick
Senior Editor - Chromebooks, tablets, and wearables

Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.