How to Use Text Replacement (Keyboard Shortcuts) on iPhone and iPad

// October 4, 2016

Are you already tired of typing words, names, addresses, same sentences and others again and again? If that so, you can save some of your time by setting up keyboard shortcuts for the text that you frequently type. You can use text replacement for the initials of the word. For instance, you only have to type “btw” and it will automatically turn in to by the way.

iPhone and iPad devices already have text replacement included but only few of the most commonly used such as “omw” for “On my way”. If there are more phrases or sentences that you always have to type, you can create your own shortcuts so you do not have to type everything all over again. All shortcuts you create from a certain iDevice will automatically sync among all your iDevices. How to use text replacement? We will show you step by step!

How to Use Text Replacement or Keyboard Shortcuts on iPhone and iPad

text replacement

1. Open Settings app from your iPhone or iPad.

2. Tap General then tap Keyboard.

3. Tap Text Replacement.


Step 4: Tap the “+” sign.

Step 5: Type the whole phrase you usually have to type in the Phrase field. (e.g., laughing out loud)

Step 6: Type the snippet that you want to be replaced by the phrase. (e.g., lol)

Step 7: Simply tap Save to create your text replacement.

After you type the shortcut you create, it will automatically be replaced by the whole phrase. Tapping the space bar will trigger the text replacement.

But if you were using Auto-Correction feature, open Settings app and tap General. Tap Keyboard and select Auto-Correct. There will be a text insertion bubble above the shortcuts. Clicking it will cancel the text replacement while tapping the space bar triggers the use of text replacement.

How to Activate QuickType

To activate QuickType feature or the prediction of the texts you are about to type, follow these steps:

  1. Open Settings
  2. Tap General and select Keyboard.
  3. Tap Predictive. This feature allows you to type only the first few letters of the words you need to type and the phrase or the whole word will automatically appear above the keyboard.

How to Edit or Remove Text Replacement on iDevices

If you need to edit your text replacement and keyboard shortcuts, it is very easy to do so.


Simply open Settings app and tap General. Tap Keyboard and select Text Replacement. Tap the keyboard shortcut you wish to edit then you can make adjustments on the phrase or shortcut. Once finished, simply tap Save.

Remove or Add Text Replacement

From text replacement, you can edit your shortcuts easily. Simply tap the shortcut you made and the Phrase and Shortcut field will appear where you can edit.


If you want to delete one of the shortcuts you made, simply tap the Edit from the button then tap the red circle that will appear next to the shortcuts. Then tap Delete.

Text Replacement and Troubleshooting on Mac

You can easily find the text replacement feature on your Mac. In System Preferences, click Keyboard then click Text. Here you can create your shortcuts. But as long as all your iDevices are using the same iCloud account, your shortcuts or snippets should sync.


If you have syncing or troubleshoot problems, here are some tips that you can do. One of these solutions should work for you.

  • Go to iCloud Drive then Settings. Turn it off then reboot your device. Turn it on again and check if it will work.
  • From iCloud, turn off and on Documents and Data.
  • Perform hard reset on your iOS device.
  • Sign out from iCloud and sign back in.

The use of text replacement feature works on devices running iOS 9 or above. It works on Messages, Calendar and Mail, Reminders, Safari and on other third-party apps such as Twitter and Gmail. If you encountered any problems, simply leave your question in the comment section below!


One thought on “How to Use Text Replacement (Keyboard Shortcuts) on iPhone and iPad

  1. Joon says:

    How do I remove the saved Text Replacement words from one device but not from other devices?

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