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Android's No.1 paid app SwiftKey - now free

Android's No.1 paid app SwiftKey - now free

SwiftKey, the wildly-popular keyboard app for Android, is now available for free. Previously priced at $3.99, the keyboard was the most downloaded paid Android application of all time. With a mountain of awards and millions of users, SwiftKey has decided to change its strategy. The newly-released version 5.0 will be now be permanently free of charge. 

swiftkey teaser
SwiftKey - now available free / © swiftkey.com

SwiftKey uses advanced machine learning to predict the next word a user will type. The success of its algorithms have seen the technology licensed to many vendors, including Samsung. SwiftKey may be feeling the heat from the improvements to Android’s stock keyboard and want to get their app into as many hands as possible. No doubt they recognise the ‘stickiness’ factor present in keyboards – once a user becomes accustomed to a particular input method, they rarely want to change.

AndroidPIT SwiftKey v5 themes
SwiftKey has some very nice new themes, some of which are free for existing users. / © AndroidPIT

How will SwiftKey replace the massive loss of revenue offering it for free? With in-app purchases of course! Joining the freemium movement, the new ‘SwiftKey Store’ is launching with 30 new themes. Prices begin at 99 cents for individual looks and rise to $4.99 for packs of 10. The themes allow you to customise your keyboard with different styles, gesture colors and letter shapes. Existing paid users won’t be left in the cold either – they will each receive a complimentary theme pack. 

AndroidPIT SwiftKey v5 settings
SwiftKey v5.0 also brings a number row option and more emoji. / © AndroidPIT

New features from the recent beta are now also available in version 5.0. Over 800 emojis and a new number row have been included, as well visual refreshments throughout the app. There’s almost certainly future paid upgrades on the way, but the company is keeping silent on their plans. 

Will this ‘pay to pimp your keyboard’ concept be successful? If the thousands of other companies employing a similar strategy are anything to go by, we believe the answer is yes.

Which keyboard is your favorite?

Via: Engadget

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  • Is it just me or has SwiftKey keyboard become a little slower to pop up than before?

  • I think I'll start using Swiftkey now that it's free. I did a one month trial once but the app wasn't learning " my language " fast enough so I gave it up for the stock keyboard.

    • My1 Jun 13, 2014 Link to comment

      maybe that was also from an earlier version, but swiftkey remembers many things very fast, especially if you disable auto correct and only use suggestions (like me)...

  • I think fleksy keyboard more awesome than this

  •   16
    Deactivated Account Jun 12, 2014 Link to comment

    Woohooo! Best Keyboard ever!

  • wow, i need to test my eyes, i can't believe what i see.

  • There has always been competition when it comes to text input options and software that facilitate in ease of typing. Keyboard apps like Swype and SwiftKey are already available for Android users and they have replaced the default keyboard too.

  • Gr8 keyboard!

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