IOS Text Replacement wth Fill-in

Has anyone come across an app like Typinator or TextExpander for iOS with fill-in option? I rely heavily on text expansion for work and it is lacking on the iPad.

iOS Text expansion is very basic and does not support fill-in snippets.

TextExpander on iOS sucks and hasn’t received any real development.

Totally agree TextExpander on iOS could be improved, but I think that’s more to do with Apple than the dev. Expansion on iOS just does not work the way it does on the Mac, and that’s a decision made by Apple.

I’ve not found any other options that work reliably, and are an improvement of the workflow rather than a hindrance. Other than using the TE 3rd party keyboard I’m not sure if anything would work.

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Definitely. And that is the reason why I started using the text expansion features integrated in iOS a few years ago for the most important (basic) replacements. I still use TE on the Mac, but I tend to forget quite often that it “exists” on iOS, too.

For me, text replacement has to work everywhere - without the need of app developers implementing SDKs and without me syncing snippets in third-party apps. And that is something TE cannot deliver even if they wanted to do so.

They tried doing so with the proprietary keyboard (which I don’t like) and they tried doing so by getting developers to implement their SDK. Several years ago, it feels as if there was a huge list of developers that implemented Smile’s SDK, but these days, it does not happen that often. And if you look at the list of apps that implemented the SDK in its latest iteration (including Fill-In) the “impressive” number of 74 apps that support the SDK is being reduced to just 11 apps (if you do not count the different versions of the same app as an individual app).

Given the apparent indifference of most developers and Apple’s restrictions, Smile seems to have accepted that it just cannot do more with TE on iOS and iPadOS.

With the already released M1 MacBook Airs and the M2 MacBook Pros on the horizon, I do not see this getting better. When it comes down to typing, my device of choice will be the Mac going forward (always on, fast, no battery issues - everything an iPad has to offer without OS limitations - at an attractive price point). I do not see myself typing much on the iPad (and definitely not on the iPhone) in the future.


problem is that does not work on iOS, as is the question in this thread

Missed the iOS part completely, sorry for posting off topic.

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Curious why the M1s mean you don’t expect it to get better. Is there something about the M1s that makes it less likely? Or do you just mean Apple isn’t likely to let TE work any better on iOS and the alternatives are getting ever better?

Exactly that.

The M1 Macs are awesome. I really have to stop myself not buying one and to force myself to wait for the second generation… What I intended to say: The iPad is an amazing device. You grab it and it is available to you. Waking from sleep in an instant. Apps start with a tap. Without delay. It has transformed how I interact with computers. When Apple showed off the 1st gen Macbook Air M1, I was blown away. It was like an iPad: flip the lid open - there it is. Without a blink of the screen. Ready for work. Launch (some) apps: there they are. No wait time. Close the lid: the MB Air sleeps again. Open it up again: there it is again - at once. It is incredible. And that instantaneous interaction with a computer combined with the powerful options MacOS and tools like TE, Keyboard Maestro and many more provide me with: I am SO looking forward to my first Mx Mac. It combines the advantages of the trusty Mac platform with many benefits an iPad has. That is what I tried to say.

Thank you for asking so that I was able to clarify what I meant to say!

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I’m with you on the limitations of TE on iPadOS/iOS. Frustrating. But I heard a tip on a podcast several months ago that makes TE more useful than I thought it was: You can drag and drop snippets out of the TE app into (almost) any text field to expand the snippet. If you have fill-in fields, you’ll see a window pop up in the TE app where you can fill them in. When you’re done, everything is pasted into the text field for you. Still not as seamless as on the Mac, but I now keep TE in slideover so that I can do this wherever I am.