What is predictive text? - Definition from WhatIs.com
Part of the Wireless and mobile glossary:

Predictive text is an input technology that facilitates typing on a mobile device by suggesting words the end user may wish to insert in a text field. Predictions are based on the context of other words in the message and the first letters typed. Because the end user simply taps on a word instead of typing it it out on a soft keyboard, predictive text can significantly speed up the input process. 

Apple has included a predictive text bar feature called QuickType in the iOS 8 release. QuickType has a machine learning component that allows the software to build custom dictionaries. This allows the software to remember such things as whether or not the end user uses slang when communicating with specific people and adjust its text predictions accordingly. Android introduced a predictive text bar with its release of Jelly Bean 4.1 in 2012.

One of the earliest applications for predictive text was T9 (text on 9 keys). T9 made typing on mobile phones and other small devices easier than multi-tapping, which required the user to tap numbers up to four times to register letter characters. T9 improved the user experience by associating groups of letters on each phone key with words in a dictionary. Software in the device correlated sequences of key presses with words in the dictionary and prioritized predictions by frequency of use.

Although predictive text technologies are becoming increasingly sophisticated, the software is still notoriously error-prone. Erroneous predictive text input on Apple devices is sometimes referred to as the Cupertino effect. The name was inspired by the way early spell checkers would change the word cooperation to Cupertino, which just happens to be the city in California where Apple has its corporate headquarters.

This was last updated in September 2014
Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • full-disk encryption (FDE)

    - What is full-disk encryption (FDE)?Full-disk encryption (FDE) is encryption at the hardware level. (WhatIs.com)

  • Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE)

    - Also marketed as Bluetooth Smart, Bluetooth LE was introduced in the Bluetooth 4.0 specification as an alternative to Bluetooth Classic. Like its predecessor, Bluetooth LE uses frequency hopping wi... (WhatIs.com)

  • Cyber Monday

    - Cyber Monday is a marketing event created to promote online sales. The day falls on the Monday after Black Friday, which directly follows American Thanksgiving Day. (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Wireless and mobile

    - Terms related to wireless and mobile technology, including definitions about consumer mobile technology devices and communication technologies such as Wi-Fi, WiMAX and LTE.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.