Microsoft acquires popular keyboard app SwiftKey (Update)

Ian Hardy

February 2, 2016 8:27pm

Update – March 2nd: Microsoft has announced it has successfully acquired SwiftKey, noting a one-liner on its site that, “Microsoft has completed the acquisition of SwiftKey.”


Update – 02/03/16: Microsoft confirmed that it has acquired SwiftKey. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Microsoft noted in a recent blog post that “SwiftKey’s technology aligns with our vision for more personal computing experiences that anticipate our needs versus responding to our commands, and directly supports our ambition to reinvent productivity by leveraging the intelligent cloud.”


The SwiftKey employees will all be joining Microsoft and the company promises to continue developing SwiftKey’s apps for Android and iOS “as well as explore scenarios for the integration of the core technology across the breadth of our product and services portfolio.”

Finally, Microsoft noted, “In the coming months, we’ll have more to share about how we’ll integrate SwiftKey technology with our Guinness World Record Word Flow technology for Windows.”

Original story

Microsoft is in the process of acquiring SwiftKey – a popular iOS and Android swipeable keyboard app – for $250 million USD, according to a new report stemming from the Financial Times,

The deal will reportedly be announced later this week and is Microsoft’s latest app acquisition, following the purchase of Acompli, MileIQ, Sunrise and Wunderlist.

While SwiftKey still hasn’t made its way to Microsoft’s Windows Phone mobile platform, Swiftkey’s Keyboard is available on both iOS and Android devices. The popular keyboard app has been installed on over 300 million devices and is widely regarded as one of the best mobile keyboard apps, especially for those interested in swipeable keyboards.

The Financial Times says Microsoft declined to comment on the transaction, but the report states SwiftKey’s 150 employees will join Microsoft’s research division.

Late last month rumours surfaced indicating Microsoft might be planning to bring its popular Windows Phone keyboard to iOS. Given that Microsoft’s keyboard is already recognized as one of the best out there, it’s likely the company is more interested in SwiftKey’s recent research into artificial intelligence, rather than the actual app.

 

SourceMicrosoft
  • MassDeduction

    I appreciated the article’s final paragraph, as I was otherwise confused why Microsoft would want to invest in a company that has a competing, but not necessarily superior, product. The AI element makes a lot more sense.

    • Marc Palumbo

      I have a feeling that this is more for the patents. But we can almost assume that Microsoft is out to dominate the app markets on Android and iOS. They want to make sure that even though you’re using Android or iOS, you’re mostly using Microsoft software.

  • Omar

    They’ll start tracking everything you type like they do on Windows 10 but on other operating systems now.

    • Everything does that. Nothing new if Microsoft joins in

  • Doombots

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

  • MoYeung

    This is actually good news for Microsoft.

    • xanth18

      However, probably bad news for everyone else who enjoys Swiftkey.

    • Marc Palumbo

      How so?

  • Hamid

    This is awesome. I just switched from WP to android and haven’t found a keyboard as good as Microsoft’s but swiftkey was the closest. I anticipate happy typing and swiping.

    • It’s Me

      It’s been a while since I’ve used either on Android or iOS but I always preferred Swype over Swiftkey. But I hear lots of people prefer Swiftkey.

    • FlamesFan89

      I used to be a Swiftkey user, and before that Swype, but when I tried out the Google keyboard, I was hooked and haven’t moved back. I do think that both Swype and Swiftkey are great keyboards though.

  • Abel

    How ironic that SwiftKey is not on Windows Phone and was purchased by Microsoft!

    By the way, I use both (MS’s Word Flow on my Lumia, and SwiftKey on my Android tablet). As much praise as MS’s Word Flow deserves, it doesn’t come near SwiftKey. I could name many advantages the latter has over the former, but I’ll just mention these two: better predictions and learning, and multi-language capabilities. I have English, French and Spanish on both. While SwiftKey gets the word right most of the times, regardless of what language I’m typing in, and learns new words fairly quickly, WordFlow is a challenge, and I have to specifically change the language to the one I want to type in, for one thing.

    Hope they can make use of it for WM10!

  • RS

    I love swiftkey on my android but I think MS’s keyboard was superior on WP. It would be great if MS came out with a version for android.
    Although I agree with you guys about it not being about swiftkey app itself.