For many, the biggest challenge of the iPhone (aside from resisting buying one) is getting used to the virtual keyboard. In fact, there are lots of ways Apple ensures touchscreen typing is a positive experience you’re coming from a full-size computer keyboard or a thumb-based smartphone, here are some ways to tap into the iPhone’s typing features.

Catch and release

The iPhone differs registers the key you’ve pressed when you take your finger off the key, rather than when you tap on it. So if you press a key and see that it’s the wrong one, you can easily slide your finger to the correct key. In conventional typing it’s common to try and avoid pressing multiple keys. With the iPhone there’s no need: it recognises only single keys at once, while its correction tools quickly work out what you meant to type.

The iPhone’s onscreen keyboard has large buttons that make it easy to type accurately and quickly

Punctuation slide

To add a punctuation mark, press and hold the .?123 button until the numeric and punctuation keyboard appears, slide your finger to the key you want, and release it. Not only will you type the punctuation mark, but you’ll find yourself back in alphabet mode without having to press the ABC key.

Unlock caps lock

Typing in all caps may be considered impolite, but sometimes it’s necessary. The caps lock functionality isn’t enabled by default; to turn it on, go to Settings: General: Keyboard and tap on Enable Caps Lock. Then, when you’re typing, quickly double-tap on the shift key; it’ll turn blue to tell you caps lock is on. Tap on it once more to disable caps lock.

Present and correct

No matter how good a typist you are, mistakes happen. Fortunately, the iPhone’s pretty smart. By looking at the letters near the ones you typed, it can deduce with surprising accuracy what you meant to type and will offer the suggestion in a text bubble. To accept the suggestion, press the spacebar or a punctuation mark. To reject it, tap on the suggestion and it’ll go away. Dismiss the iPhone’s suggestion for the same word twice, and it’ll add the word you typed to its dictionary.

Zoom in

If you discover a typo, it’s easy enough to fix. Tap on the spot where you want the cursor to appear, and then tap on backspace to clear your mistake. Controlling the cursor this way can be challenging. For more precise results, tap and hold on the text to make a magnifying loupe appear. As you drag the loupe around, the text insertion point will follow it so you can easily position the cursor exactly where you want.

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