SWIFTKEY HAS ANNOUNCED that its alternative keyboard for Android smartphones, which is based around personalised predictive text, will become free to all.
Previously a premium app that offered users a one-month free trial, Swiftkey is now available for free for all Android users. Swiftkey has also confirmed that it's working on an app for iOS 8, which Apple last week revealed will bring support for third-party keyboards for the first time.
The British company's business model has shifted to the freemium market, with a new Swiftkey store available allowing users to add custom themes to their keyboards for a small charge. There are 30 different themes available with more to be added, and the default theme has been updated.
Users who have previously purchased the app won't be dunned, however, but will receive their first 10 themes free of charge in a downloadable premium pack.
Swiftkey co-founder and CEO Jon Reynolds said, "This is the start of an incredibly exciting phase for us as a business. We have made the decision to go free to better enable everyone, everywhere, to use Swiftkey's market-leading technology without payment being a barrier.
"We're focused not only on reaching more users with our powerful technology, but on building great content and features to engage them."
In addition to the themes, the new version of Swiftkey for Android includes a range of features previously seen in beta editions. 800 Emojis have been added to the dictionary and the predictive text can automatically offer an emoji as an option if it sees a suitable one.
A separate number row has also been added, word prediction has been improved and the latest version will support 66 languages.
Swiftkey for Android is available to download from Google Play, and is compatible with all devices running Android 2.2 and above. µ