Using japanese keyboard on phone

Hi everyone,

I was wondering how many of you use the Japanese keyboard on their phone? and how long did it take you to get used to it?

It’s so weird and so different from the typical AZERTY/QWERTY keyboard. You need to learn where the syllables are because you don’t immediately see them. There is no katakana so you need to type in hiragana these use the “suggestion bar” (don’t know how it’s called) to get the right thing. It feels like too much work. Like can you even type fast enough with that thing(compared to our keyboards)?

Anyway, if you have any anecdote to mention, feel free to do so :smiley:

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Immediately.

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I type slower though

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I use the regular English/romaji keyboard and let that convert the words. I believe this came up in the forums before and a bunch of people living in Japan said they don’t know anyone who uses the kana keyboard. If I’m remembering correctly.

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Yeah, I’ve extensively surveyed Japanese people on apps like HelloTalk and found that most people use the romaji keyboard. The exception to this is people using older flip-phones with physical buttons, which commonly have the kana toggle buttons you refer to.

I use the romaji keyboard. It’s not less authentic, it’s just more practical. I can type pretty quickly with the romaji keyboard and I don’t feel that I’d make any more typos using that than the older keyboard.

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Think of it like this: you’ve spent all your life thinking that ひらがな is h-i-r-a-g-a-n-a. Now you have to adapt to think of it as ひーらーがーな.

If you look at it this way, you’ll notice that it’s not that different speed-wise. You’re just not used to it.

Best tip? Start using it right away.

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Really? I always had the impression that the kana one was definitely more used.

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When I think more on it, two things come to mind: By immediately narrowing down the survey participants to Japanese natives learning English, I’ve already ruled out random sampling. Secondly, if those English learners on HelloTalk switched to using a romaji keyboard because it allows them to switch languages to an English keyboard quicker or more conveniently, that would explain the difference I’ve observed.

Edit: This is an interesting discussion. I’ll weigh in and say that, in my opinion, I think it’s more difficult to use the kana toggle keyboard with two thumbs than it is a romaji keyboard. But you may think otherwise given your extensive experience with it, JP. At the end of the day, Gboard was the only keyboard that allowed me to have a kana toggle keyboard with an English keyboard, but I hate Gboard so I switched to Swiftkey and now use a romaji JP keyboard instead.

I was just repeating what I had heard. :man_shrugging:

But logically speaking, people already use the romaji keyboard on their computers, so why would they want to learn a second layout for their phones?

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They are in the Japanese equivalent of alphabetical order.

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Because the phone screen is teensy. That’s why I use the nine-key kana keyboard.

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I like the 9 key Japanese keyboard on my phone much more than the English keyboard on my phone. I still make typos, but they tend to be more swipe related rather than missing the button I aimed for entirely like English. Tiny English buttons are no bueno.

Getting used to it is just a matter of practicing with it, like everything. The layout is incredibly intuitive, being in syllabary order. Then you just have to memorize that press once is あrow, swipe left is いrow, up is うrow, right is えrow, and down is おrow.

Um, my not very interesting Japanese keyboard story is I once activated my phone’s Japanese keyboard before I even started learning Japanese because I was curious. I have a note somewhere in my phone marveling over it. And once I did start learning Japanese, I found I remembered syllabary order better by visualizing the keyboard layout in my head.

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Switftkey has introduced flick as of sometime this year, I believe

where to find the option

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Because you don’t use the keyboard the same way. Remember the 12-key keyboards back in the day?

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Also, there are “kana” keyboards. I don’t know how much they are used though.

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But those were terrible!

I know my GF uses the kana keyboard (and she’s pretty damn fast with it). She uses it even for English letters (with a decent speed).

Once you’re used to it, it’s definitely faster than typing romaji, since you only need a quick flick for a character rather than 2 taps.

EDIT: Also, on a computer keyboard you can type with all 10 fingers - you can’t translate that typing skill to the touch keyboard on a smartphone ^^

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That would be really funny to watch though. :laughing:

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DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU RIGHT NOW. I’VE WAITED YEARS FOR THIS.

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It’s a shame I can’t use Swiftkey without enabling full access and effectively selling my soul to them.

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Most Japanese people I see typing on phones do so on the Kana keyboard. I also use it myself most of the times.

I have more difficult with the extended kana keyboard, the one that appears on the ipad in landscape orientation, and that sometimes pops up in certain japanese cash machines. Takes me forever on that one.

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Also, you can either tap multiple times to cycle through the vowels or hold and swipe to get a given vowel quickly.

For exemple, to write “こ”, you can tap the “か” button 5 times (か>き>く>け>こ), or tap the “か” button and swipe down to get “こ” immediately.

It takes some time getting used to it, but once you do, there’s no coming back :stuck_out_tongue:

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