[How To] Configure Keyboard Shortcuts for iPhone or iPad in iOS 7

One feature that’s been around since iOS 6, but that many people don’t know about, is Keyboard Shortcuts. Here’s a quick guide that shows you how to get them setup and customized to save you time when composing your texts, emails, or documents. These shortcuts work across the iOS system, including inside third-party apps.

The premise is simple: type an abbreviated version of the word or phrase you want and let the iPhone do the rest. In my example here, I’ve set “zag” to be the shortcut I’d type in order to get “ZAGGblog”. You do this already with SMS shorthand — typing “lol” means “laughing out loud” and typing “brb” means “be right back”.

Step 1: From your Home screen, open Settings and select “General”.

Step 2: Scroll down towards the bottom and select “Keyboard”.

Step 3: Scroll down to the ‘Shortcuts’ section and select “Add New Shortcut…”.

Step 4: In the “Phrase” field, type what you want the shortcut to actually spell out in full. In the “Shortcut” field, type the abbreviated version of what you want to enter each time in order to display the full Phrase you wrote in the field above. When you’re finished, click “Save”. Rinse and repeat for as many shortcuts as you’d like to configure.

Step 5: You’re done! Launch an app and try it out.


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  • Corey

    I did it one time when I first got the phone, but forgot how to do it again….. Thanks for posting this, it was so easy! Great directions