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What is keyboard SDK and why your company needs it?

Reading Time: 3 minutes

As personalisation persists to pick up as a digital trend, third-party SDKs have enjoyed many opportunities to introduce a more ‘human’ experience across channels, apps and devices.

However, some markets are still under equipped to deliver on the full personalized experience. For example, when we compare Apple mobile devices to those of Android, iOS is less compatible when it comes to customizing key system components for a more personalized experience.

This is just the reason why Fleksy has launched its public SDK as an alternative keyboard to the default keyboards both Apple and Android come installed with. For app developers, this grants them the opportunity to replace default keyboards with the Fleksy white-label keyboard, within the apps, to provide a more user friendly and tailored experience.

Installing a third-party keyboard SDK not only means greater personalisation options for app developers to add in their application, a keyboard SDK also enhances in-app functionality when it comes to certain typing experience features. For example, the end-user can interact with the Fleksy keyboard and have less worry about the accuracy with which they type, as the keyboard is very forgiving. 

How does keyboard SDK work?

Firsty, a software development kit refers to a collection of software development tools that are available in one installable package. Most SDKs come with a software framework, to make installation and integration easier on the app developers’ end. SDKs are especially handy when considering programming for mobile applications.

As the majority of digital users interact with companies and brands via mobile applications, enhancing the in-app functionality and user experience are considered top priorities among software developers. On this note, mobile applications’ operating systems should not be overlooked when optimizing for iOS and Android. 

Generally speaking, a keyboard SDK works by enabling a developer to build custom features into their applications. These features can be added on or merged with another program to execute a specific function.

In essence, an SDK offers a way for the program or application in question to interface with and control the resources provided by another software items.

How to install a keyboard SDK?

Once you have a host app, this being your main application, a keyboard SDK can be integrated into the host app as a “keyboard extension”. After installing the SDK, the app developer will have full control over the functions made available via the SDK.

Most SDKs and other types of keyboard builders can be downloaded and installed via an online link. The installation instructions and guidelines would be provided by the SDK manufacturer.

Keyboard SDK for greater in-app functionality

When building an app, any developer will know how tricky it can get to programme in-app actions that seem like small details. This is where an SDK can lessen frustration and enhance in-app functionality.

For example, a keyboard SDK takes away the complexity around building features like auto-correct algorithms and analysis of tap locations. Tap locations, rather than letters selected, allows for a more practical experience when the end-user engages with the app’s keyboard. This is because the keyboard is more tolerant towards drifting errors. As a result, visually-impaired people can benefit more greatly from the app’s functionality when it comes to performing keyboard actions.

An SDK, in the case that the kit makes these coding functions available, can also assist in smoother integration of mini apps within the main application. For example, including a mini app with the main application’s keyboard offers greater functionality in terms of granting the user helpful shortcuts that keep the conversation flowing – without them having to pause, first cut out of the chat, switch apps, or Google what they want to find and then cut & paste it back into the chat. The core idea is to offer lightweight additions designed to serve the messaging use case.

The key goal is to have a keyboard that allows the user to easily type out sentences without thinking too hard, such as when typing with one hand. The keyboard should be smart, intuitive and predictive – correcting errors and allowing the typer to smash out sentences in a forgiving manner.

To conclude,  your company needs a keyboard SDK to ensure a well-designed keyboard experience for the end-user, so that they can enjoy a greater level of efficiency when navigating the UI of the app in question – allowing them to access its full functionality.

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