Google has dropped an update to the Google Keyboard app in the Google Play Store that should be a welcome update for users of Gesture Typing in the app. The update brings significantly improved word accuracy & completion for those who use Gesture Type (swiping your finger across the keyboard to spell words instead of typing them) as well as those who do traditional typing on the keyboard. The update is version – wait for it – 4.1.23043.2297020 for those keeping score at home and like to play Google Version Bingo. The update hit the Play Store yesterday and if you are using Google Keyboard or have it installed on your Android phone or tablet, you should see the OTA update over the course of the next couple of days.
The updates to Gesture Typing accuracy in Google Keyboard should put it on par or close to it with Swype, the gesture typing keyboard that is generally accepted as the standard for these types of
utilities. There is very little separating the two apps at this point so it is more-or-less going to come down to which one you prefer. I personally have been using Google Keyboard exclusively over the past 6 months and highly recommend it.
The Google Keyboard app does have the advantage of being a Google app so it can leverage some of the back end benefits they have to offer. For example, the app learns your inputs instantly now and it will give you better suggestions over time. It also has Gesture auto-completion which gives you the completed word you are typing prior to you actually completing the gesture for it. In testing this update, it appears that the learning algorithms are indeed significantly improved and Google Keyboard is already providing a more accurate experience in both typing and gesture input.
As you would expect, there is the normal raft of bug fixes and performance improvements mentioned in the Release Notes but alas, what is fixed or addressed is not disclosed.
Google Keyboard is a free utility app for any Android Phone or Tablet.