How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Interested in how to speed up your typing by quickly inserting punctuation with your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad keyboard? Annoyed at having to press multiple buttons, at having to tap the ‘123’ option and then selecting the punctuation, then needing to press the ‘ABC” option again to continue typing? Well this is the tip for you and we’ll show you how after the break!

Instead of pressing and letting go of the ‘123’ option then selecting the appropriate punctuation, simply tap and hold the ‘123’ option, slide your finger to the desired punctuation, and release. The punctuation you want will be inserted and, upon release, the keyboard will automatically go back to the “ABC” option on its own and you can continue your typing.

That’s it! 1 tap and a quick swipe, instead of 3 taps. We think you’ll quickly discover that this method will save you a lot of time throughout the day, especially if you’re a heavy text user.

Bonus tip: Check

Let us know how this tip works out for you, and as always, ask any questions you have in the comments below!

Tips of the day will range from beginner-level 101 to advanced-level ninjary. If you already know this tip, keep the link handy as a quick way to help a friend. If you have a tip of your own you’d like to suggest, add them to the comments or send them in to [email protected] (If it’s especially awesome and previously unknown to us, we’ll even give ya a reward. )

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

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How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

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How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

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How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipadMike Wuerthele | Sep 26, 2017

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

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An unexpected side effect of Apple’s new Smart Punctuation feature in iOS 11 has manifested and is causing some problems with apps that use Core Data to store strings. Here’s how to turn off Smart Punctuation, and why you might want to for now.

First spotted by SongSheet app developer Gabriel Hauber, Smart Punctuation is periodically inserting a null byte. Specifically, if the user enters two dashes, it generates an en-dash. If the user enters three, then the en-dash is displayed, but a null-byte is appended after the en-dash.

The null byte insertion prematurely ends a string, which as a best case causes a truncation of data — but can also lead to instability and crashing.

In all likelihood, Apple is already working on a fix, and given a brief perusal of developer documentations, it appears to be able to be temporarily disabled by app developers. However, to fix the problem on your personal devices and sidestep the issue for now in its entirety, here’s how to turn off the feature.

In Settings, tap General. Then, tap Keyboards, and toggle Smart Punctuation to off.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Comments (8)


I understand the problems this may cause some people until it is resolved, but really like the ability to easily add an en-dash while typing.


I would love to see more details about what’s really going on here. In iOS, user input comes in the form of an NSString object (or a String object in Swift). These string objects are fully UNICODE enabled, include length counters, and do not use NULL bytes as terminators.

If an application is grabbing the raw data and treating it as a C-style string, whether for internal use or for use with an external framework, then problems like this are likely to occur, because the byte-stream can include zero values.

On the other hand, if the application is doing the right thing, and calling appropriate member functions to get (for example) a UTF-8 representation of the UNICODE string, then there shouldn’t be any zeros in the resulting byte stream. If there are, then Apple’s got a bug somewhere, which will clearly need to be fixed.


The problem with workarounds like this – asking folks to disable the setting for now – is that people often don’t remember to go back and re-enable it after Apple quietly fixes the issue in the next update. Heck, they likely won’t know that Apple fixed it – since Apple doesn’t detail every fix that goes into an update.

So, the error seems to be on Apple’s side. I guess that the third tap should turn the en-dash into an em-dash. Is that correct? Also, your image caption, should state “hyphens, en-, and em-dashes, example from”


I just wanted to say, as an erstwhile C programmer, C-style strings (null terminated character arrays) need to DIAF. They have been the source of so many bugs over the decades. I’d bet money that’s what SongSheet is experiencing.

Aggravated by autocorrect? Struggling with Slide to Text? Here’s how to control spelling corrections when you compose a text or email.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Here’s a common problem we all face. You’re typing a text message on your iPhone, and the built-in auto-correction feature changes a word, and it doesn’t make any sense. Before you catch the error, the text is sent. The good news is that you can prevent this from happening by tweaking the settings for your keyboard.

You can turn off the auto-correction feature completely; control auto capitalization, predictive text, and other options; or create text replacements to convert an entire word or a series of letters into something else, such as your name or address. Just make sure you’re running the latest version of iOS or iPadOS. Here’s how it all works.

Turn Off Autocorrect

On your iPhone or iPad, go to Settings > General > Keyboard. Let’s address the elephant in the room right off the bat. To stop your text from being changed or auto-corrected to something else, turn off the switch for Auto-Correction.

Now when you open a text message and start typing, it will no longer change words that aren’t in the keyboard’s dictionary, such as proper names. Instead of trying to change these words, your phone will simply flag them as possible misspellings.

If you do make a mistake, you can still request help from your keyboard. Tap on the misspelled word, and a list of alternative spellings and words pop up. Tap the correct spelling if you wish to replace the word you typed. If you’d rather not see the red lines indicating a possibly misspelled word, return to the keyboard settings screen and turn off the switch for Check Spelling.

Turn Off Predictive Text

Predictive text offers suggestions for your current word and the next word, but it doesn’t force its suggestions on you. The predictive feature also displays the word you’re typing in quotes along with its other suggestions, so you can easily choose that word if it’s correct.

If you don’t want your phone predicting what you might be about to type, navigate to the Keyboard settings screen, and turn off the switch next to Predictive. However, we recommend keeping this feature on, especially if you disable Auto-Correction and Check Spelling.

Text Replacement

If you decide not to disable Auto-Correction and Check Spelling, you can add words and phrases to your keyboard’s dictionary so they won’t be flagged. Open to the keyboard settings screen and tap Text Replacement, then select the + icon. Now, type the word or phrase you want to add into the Phrase box. Leave the Shortcut box empty and tap Save. Now when you type the added text, it will no longer be flagged as incorrect.

Instead of having to type a certain word or phrase every time, you can create a shortcut, and it will be automatically converted. From the keyboard settings screen, tap Text Replacement and select the + icon. Type in the phrase, then add the corresponding shortcut.

For example, you can add your full name in the phrase field and use your initials as the shortcut. When you want your full name to appear in a text or email, just type the shortcut. To delete a shortcut from the list, swipe it to the left and tap Delete.

Any saved words or shortcuts are added across all your Apple devices as long as iCloud syncing is enabled. You will find them available to you in built-in apps such as Mail, Notes, Reminders, Contacts, and Safari, as well as in third-party apps such as Facebook and Twitter.

Voice Recognition

You can often avoid typing altogether by speaking your words. Make sure the option Enable Dictation is turned on. At your text message, tap the microphone icon and then start speaking. Remember to include punctuation marks as you speak. The voice recognition is fairly accurate, so it should be able to capture most of your words correctly.

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More Keyboard Settings to Change

You can further customize your keyboard from the settings screen. While many of them are useful features, you can disable them by turning their switch off.

Auto-Capitalization will capitalize the first letter of a word after you type a period. It also allows you to double-tap the spacebar to enter a period.

Enable Caps Lock keeps the uppercase keyboard alive if you double-tap the Shift key.

Smart Punctuation automatically converts certain punctuation marks to make them look better, such as turning straight quotation marks into curly ones or a double dash into an em dash.

On an iPad, the option for Enable Key Flicks is a quick way to type an alternate character. Flick down on a specific key on the keyboard, and the character that appears at the top of the key is entered. For example, flicking down on the A key enters a @, flicking down on the D key enters a $, and flicking down on the X key enters a . Flicking down on any of the keys at the top enters a number. Unless you keep entering the wrong key by flicking instead of tapping, you’ll want to keep this enabled.

Slide to Type for an iPhone or Slide on Floating Keyboard to Type on an iPad lets you slide your finger along different keys to form a word. Often a quicker way to create a word, this option shouldn’t interfere with your regular typing whether you use it or not. So you can typically leave it enabled.

Delete Slide-to-Type by Word deletes the entire previous word that you entered by sliding. If you find that the sliding feature sometimes results in incorrect words that you need to modify, you may want to turn off this option to more easily correct them.

On an iPhone, Character Preview displays a larger preview of each character you tap on the keyboard as a way to confirm that you pressed the right key. For some people, this option may be annoying or distracting. For others, it’s a helpful way to more clearly tell if you’re tapping the correct key. The option for “.” Shortcut automatically inserts a period if you double-tap the spacebar, an effective way to end one sentence and start a new one.

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To turn smart punctuation off, all you have to do is go to Settings > General > Keyboard, and then turn off the “Smart Punctuation” toggle. That’s it!

How do I change autocorrect shortcuts?

IPhone Autocorrect Prank

  1. Step 1: Go to Settings. Go to Settings > General.
  2. Step 2: Keyboard. Go to Keyboard.
  3. Step 3: Shortcuts. Tap Add New Shortcut…
  4. Step 5: Type Shortcut. Type a silly word, like cheese, for the shortcut.
  5. Step 6: More… Repeat Steps 3-5 for as many common words as possible.
  6. Step 7: Finished!

How do you fix incorrect AutoCorrect on iPhone?

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap General > Keyboard.
  3. Turn on Auto-Correction. By default, Auto-Correction is on.

How do I override spell check on iPhone?

How to turn off autocorrect completely

  1. Open Settings on your iPhone.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap Keyboard.
  4. Toggle the option for “Auto-Correction” so that it’s off.

How do you reset autocorrect on iPhone?

To reset your autocorrect, follow these steps:

  1. Tap the “Settings” icon.
  2. Slide the screen up to see more options. Tap “General.”
  3. Slide the screen up to see more options. Then, tap “Reset.”
  4. Tap “Reset Keyboard Dictionary.”
  5. Enter your passcode to continue.
  6. Tap “Reset Dictionary.”

What is preemptive text?

Predictive text is an input technology that facilitates typing on a mobile device by suggesting words the end user may wish to insert in a text field. Because the end user simply taps on a word instead of typing it it out on a soft keyboard, predictive text can significantly speed up the input process.

Can you remove a word from iPhone autocorrect?

Go to Settings > General > Reset and tap the “Reset Keyboard Dictionary” option. If you have a password set, your device will prompt you to enter it and then warn you that it’s about to “delete all custom words you have typed on the keyboard.” Say good riddance, and hit “Reset Dictionary.”

How do you delete learned words on iPhone?

You can either erase all learned words by going to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Keyboard Dictionary, or you can have your iPhone automatically censor out bad language that you type. To do the latter, go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Edit . You can then set a “censor” for bad language.

How do you delete misspelled words on iPhone?

To remedy this, you can use the Settings feature on your iPhone to reset your dictionary, which deletes the incorrect auto-correct words.

  1. Tap “Settings” on the home screen, tap “General” and then tap the “Reset” option.
  2. Tap the “Reset Keyboard Dictionary” option and read the warning.
  3. Tap the “Reset Dictionary” button.

What is Reset Keyboard Dictionary on iPhone?

It removes any words that you’ve added to the user dictionary : You add words to the keyboard dictionary by rejecting words iPad suggests as you type. Tap a word to reject the correction and add the word to the keyboard dictionary. Resetting the keyboard dictionary erases all words you’ve added.

Is predictive text accurate?

This technology was intended to speed up the input process and make typing more efficient. It is, however, still error-prone and would require continuous use to make it more accurate. Predictive text is a function that most modern devices already have and it can be disabled should the user want to do so.

Since I updated to iOS11, words are hyphenating in iMessage. I want to turn this feature off. I turned off “auto punctuation” and that didn’t help.

iPhone 6 Plus, iOS 11

Posted on Sep 25, 2017 7:57 AM

All replies

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I see that the Messages application keeps entering a hyphen inside of words since you updated your iPhone 6 to iOS 11. I’m happy to help.

About the keyboards settings on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch — Make sure Smart Punctuation is the setting you’ve turned off. Tap Settings > General > Keyboard to check.

Force an app to close on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch — If Smart Punctuation was turned off, force close the Messages application if it’s open, then — Restart your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch — Restart your iPhone. Once it’s returned to the Home screen, test the issue.

How to back up your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch — If restarting your phone didn’t resolve the issue, please be sure to have a fresh backup to keep your personal information safe. In order to back up your Health data, the backup needs to be encrypted. iCloud does this automatically, but iTunes doesn’t. If you’d like to use iTunes to back up your phone, refer to this article: About encrypted backups in iTunes

If you can’t update or restore your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch — Even though the title of the article isn’t specific to your issue, the section titled “Put your device in recovery mode and set it up again” will walk you through all the steps to reinstall the iOS software on your device.

This quite possibly could be the dealbreaker for me. I can’t comfortably read my messages anymore. This has got to be fixed or I will finally switch to another brand. Here’s what I’ve done to try to remedy this:

1. I’ve turned OFF Smart Punctuation.

2. I’ve force quit the iMessages app.

3. I’ve restarted my iPhone.

What I refuse to do is to restore to a backup. I lose a lot of information that way and am unsure how helpful that would be should there be another software update. This just showed up on my phone today (5/27/18) and I’ve never noticed it before. I find it hard to believe that anyone would want this feature on a message platform so small. I see that filling out this form produced no automatic hyphenation. Can you please respond?

iMac (27-inch Mid 2011), OS X El Capitan (10.11.4)

Posted on May 27, 2018 1:58 PM

To start out, it would appear that you have the text set to a larger font, which may be creating the issue. What version of the iPhone are you using?

Posted on May 29, 2018 1:49 PM

Helpful answers

Okay, I was just able to duplicate your issue. I had my son send me the two messages you have there, about flying home and for vacation, and I was finally able to get the hyphen.

It seems it does have to do with text size. I first went to Settings>Display & Brightness and increased the text size fully. That did not do it. So following the instructions to go to Accessibility for larger font sizes, I went to Settings>General>Accessibility>Larger Text, and turned that on. I then adjusted the text size to 4 less than the largest setting, and I got the hyphen to appear. So, it would appear to me that it has something to do with your font setting. Turning it down one notch removed the hyphen, so I’m not sure if you intentionally increased font size, or if this was something that happened by chance on your device.

Можно изменить параметры автокоррекции, смарт-пунктуации и многого другого.

Изменение параметров помощи при вводе текста для внешней клавиатуры

Откройте «Настройки» > «Основные» > «Клавиатура» > «Физическая клавиатура», затем выполните любое из описанных ниже действий.

Включение и выключение функции «Автопрописные». Когда этот параметр выбран, приложение, поддерживающее эту функцию, использует заглавные буквы для имен собственных и первых слов в предложениях по мере ввода.

Включение и выключение функции «Автокоррекция». Когда этот параметр выбран, приложение, поддерживающее эту функцию, исправляет опечатки по мере ввода.

Включение и выключение функции «Быстрая клавиша “.”». Когда этот параметр установлен, при двойном нажатии на пробел вставляется точка, за которой следует пробел.

Изменение параметров помощи при вводе текста для всех клавиатур

Для удобства ввода текста можно включать и выключать специальные функции ввода текста, такие как предиктивный ввод и смарт-пунктуация. Эти настройки применяются к экранной клавиатуре и внешней клавиатуре.

Откройте «Настройки» > «Основные», затем коснитесь «Клавиатура».

В списке под заголовком «Все клавиатуры» включите или отключите функции ввода текста.

Для некоторых параметров,таких как «Автокоррекция» и «Автопрописные», можно указать другие настройки для внешней клавиатуры: откройте «Настройки» > «Основные» > «Клавиатура» > «Физическая клавиатура».

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

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On this list, you can turn off auto-correction or make adjustments to other settings such as auto-capitalization and smart punctuation.

A big reason autocorrect keeps changing your words is because you may not be training it to stop unwanted changes. While you’re typing a text message, you will notice a small preview that continuously appears when autocorrect wants to change a word.

Essentially, the feature is asking your permission to make a change. If you press the space bar or select the word that’s being previewed, it gives autocorrect permission to edit. However, if you press the small ‘x’ next to the word, it tells autocorrect not to make a change.

If you are active in denying permission to autocorrect, it will eventually stop changing the word.

Why is autocorrect capitalizing random words?

You may notice that autocorrect capitalizes random words in a sentence. If you are typing something normal like, “I need to call Mom and ask when She needs to go to the Store,” you’ll have to go back and make a change to all the words that shouldn’t be capitalized.

If you don’t know why autocorrect keeps capitalizing ‘Mom’ and ‘Store,’ take a peek at your contact list and see how you are typing names. If you are saving certain words in your contact list a certain way, autocorrect will assume this is the way you always want it written.

Another simple fix for this issue is to turn off the auto-capitalization setting in your keyboard tab.

What are the three words that keep showing when I text?

The three words that appear between your text box and keyboard are called predictive text. This feature can be annoying and doesn’t always get it correct. With every word you try typing, iOS will try and predict what you are going to say. You may not always want this on because it’s essentially just a guess.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

This feature isn’t always stuck on your screen and can be turned off. To turn it off, go back into your keyboard settings and toggle the predictive setting off.

Similarly, you may also want to turn on text replacements. If you’re typing an acronym like ‘LOL’ autocorrect may change it to an entirely different word. In text replacement, you can type in the full phrase ‘laughing out loud’ and create the shortcut ‘LOL’ so autocorrect will stop changing the meaning.

Play with the settings

By no means is autocorrect a perfect feature, but, it can be very convenient. Some of the options that come with autocorrect may not be needed and it would be ideal for you to play around with your settings a bit to figure out exactly what you want to autocorrect.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

If your autocorrect is all over the place you may want to consider resetting your keyboard dictionary entirely by going to general settings, selecting reset and navigating to the dictionary reset button.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Dictation gives you the ability to talk to your iPhone or iPad instead of typing. You can access it almost anytime your keyboard is on screen, so if you really want you never have to type a text, email, note, or even Facebook message ever again.

How to enable and disable dictation on iPhone and iPad

  1. Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap Keyboard.

Tap on the On/Off switch next to Enable Dictation. Green means on, and gray means off.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

How to use dictation on iPhone and iPad

  1. Launch any app that uses the keyboard. I will use Messages for this example.
  2. Tap on the text field to bring up the keyboard.

Tap on the Dictation button. It’s the microphone between the Emoji button and Space Bar.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Tap Done when you are done speaking. Alternatively, if your microphone isn’t picking up any sound for a short amount of time it will shut off itself.

How to turn off smart punctuation on your iphone and ipad

Dictation isn’t perfect, so make sure you are speaking loud and clear in order to get the most accurate results. It works best when your iPhone or iPad is connected to a Wi-Fi network, and it won’t work if you have no reception of any kind. If you care about proper sentence structure at all, you’ll need to speak any punctuation. For example, “Hi mom [exclaimation point] I’m coming by later [period] Do you want me to pick anything up from the store [question mark]”


Anything things else you want to know about dictation on the iPhone and iPad? Let us know in the comments below!

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