« Flexible iPhone Holder/Stand | Home | Chopstick Wrapper Origami »

July 25, 2018

iPad Flicks


No, it's not a series of movies made specially for the iPad but rather a keyboard shortcut that I've had enabled from the get-go yet never knew existed till now.

From the estimable J.D. Biersdorfer's July 18 "Tech Tip" column in the New York Times:


Apple's current iOS 11 update for the iPad included a new feature in the system's built-in software keyboard called Key Flicks.

With Key Flicks enabled, most of the onscreen keys can enter different characters depending on how your fingers touch the glass.

The alternate characters for each key are shown in gray [top] above the larger black standard letter or punctuation marks. If you tap the T key normally, you get the letter T.

However, if you tap the T key and your finger happens to linger and slide down a bit, the Key Flicks software will use the alternate character for that key — which is the number 5.

Before Key Flicks was introduced, you typically switched from the regular QWERTY keyboard layer by tapping the ".?123" key in the bottom corner to change the layout to a selection of numbers and other characters.

When using the numerical keyboard, you can tap the "#+=" key to get to yet another layer of special characters for math and currency symbols.

Pressing down on the keys for vowels and other letters that take accents in certain languages opens a menu of accented letters; hold down the dollar sign ($) to get the symbols for the yen, the euro, pound sterling, and other currencies.

The Key Flicks feature is meant to save you time and taps.

If you find it more frustrating than useful, you can turn it off.

To do that, go to the iPad's home screen and open the Settings app.

Tap General, and on the General screen tap Keyboard. In the list of settings, find Enable Key Flicks and tap the button to the right of it to disable the feature and go back to using the multiple keyboard levels to insert numbers and other characters.

July 25, 2018 at 10:01 AM | Permalink


Oh, but my original thank you for this seems to have disappeared. Well, if it’s gone, saying it again, thanks! My iPad days just got easier.

Posted by: tamra | Jul 29, 2018 12:02:56 PM

Yay, it worked! Nice to be back.

Posted by: tamra | Jul 29, 2018 12:01:03 PM

Don’t know if this comment will make it through (Typepad stopped playing with me again), but gee whiz just wanted to say thanks! I do everything from my iPad these days and I had completely forgotten about this little trick. 123 whoop de dee, it’s so easy!

Posted by: tamra | Jul 29, 2018 12:00:37 PM

Sorry that it's not pertinent to this post, but I thought you would like to see this (anaesthesiologist mentioned):


Also, this is the best account of what really happened:


Totally worth watching, and perhaps sharing with your visitors. :-)

Posted by: Fred | Jul 25, 2018 10:09:10 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.