I came across the Google Indic Keyboard recently and now enjoy writing in my native language. If you want to write in an Indian language on your Android device, then this post is for you

Google Indic Keyboard allows you to type messages, update on social networks or compose emails in your native language on your Android phone. At the time of writing the keyboard supports the following languages:

  • English keyboard
  • Assamese keyboard (অসমীয়া)
  • Bengali keyboard (বাংলা)
  • Gujarati keyboard (ગુજરાતી)
  • Hindi keyboard (हिंदी)
  • Kannada keyboard (ಕನ್ನಡ)
  • Malayalam keyboard (മലയാളം)
  • Marathi keyboard (मराठी)
  • Odia keyboard (ଓଡ଼ିଆ)
  • Punjabi keyboard (ਪੰਜਾਬੀ)
  • Tamil keyboard (தமிழ்)
  • Telugu keyboard (తెలుగు)

Setting up the keyboard could be a bit confusing as changing keyboards is not something that we often do. I ended up spending some time walking through the setup for some of friends and family.

Setting Up

  1. In Google Play Store search for [Google Indic Keyboard]. If you have not installed/updated before, tap on Install or Update to get the latest application version.

    Play Store

  2. Once installed go to any of the apps where you can open the keyboard. On the bottom right corner tap the icon to change the keyboard.

    Change Keyboard Icon

  3. From the window that pops up select “Choose Keyboards.”

    Choose Keyboards

  4. Enable Google Indic Keyboard (English and Indic Languages) listed in the list of available keyboards.

    Enable Google Indic Keyboard

  5. Repeat step 2 and open up the Change Keyboard window. Select Google Indic Keyboard from the list.

    Select Indic Keyboard

  6. The keyboard is now set as Google Indic Keyboard with its default language. To choose a language of your choice, select the Indian Language icon on top left.

    Google Indic Keyboard Default

  7. From the window that pops up select the language of your choice. For me, it’s Malayalam.

    Indic Keyboard Choose Language

  8. Google Indic Keyboard supports different layout.

    • Native Keyboard: Type directly in your native language.
    • Transliteration Mode: Get output in your native language by spelling out the pronunciation using English letters(For, e.g., Malayalam -> മലയാളം)
    • Handwriting mode (currently available for Hindi only) - Write directly on your phone screen.
    • Hinglish mode - If you choose “Hindi” as an input language, the English keyboard will suggest both English and Hinglish terms.

    Indic Keyboard Layout

  9. Type away in your native language :)

    Indic Keyboard Native Language

The transliteration mode is impressive and intuitive. Its fits in perfectly with how I was earlier using my messaging apps; native language spelled out using English letters. The better thing now is that it automatically converts into my mother tongue. The Indic keyboard brings back the forgotten love to my language. Thank you, Google!.

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