Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious? Antidisestablishmentarianism? Okay, so maybe you don’t use those words every day, but what about other words that you do? And they aren’t in your iOS device (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad) dictionary? Judie was running into this issue recently on her iPhone. For some strange reason, she frequently needs to type the word “Kev”, and the iPhone kept auto-correcting it to “KeV” (note the upper-case “V”). So what do you do? Buying a bumper won’t fix this problem!

Well, with the release of iOS 4, a little-known feature is available to allow you to add custom words to the iPhone dictionary. I was puzzled when Judie said she didn’t have a way to add a custom word, because it was an option for me on my iPod Touch running iOS 4. What was the difference? I had additional, international keyboards installed.

To summarize what you need to do:

  1. Go to Settings > General > Keyboard > International Keyboards
  2. Click the “Add New Keyboard…” button
  3. Pick a new keyboard, such as Chinese – Traditional (Pinyin)
  4. Go back to the Keyboard setting page and a new option appears for “Edit User Dictionary…”

(Note: not all keyboards will necessarily enable this feature. I know that most of the Chinese keyboards do.)

You now can add custom words to your dictionary and they’ll appear along with the built-in words!


Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary


Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

via MacRumors forum

As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. If you are shopping on Amazon anyway, buying from our links gives Gear Diary a small commission.

About the Author

Gear Diary Staff
Gear Diary was founded on September 30, 2006, with the goal to create a website that would not easily be labeled. Everyone who is part of Gear Diary is a professional who uses technology in their work and daily lives. On this site, we share our enthusiasm while exploring the gear we use — the equipment that makes our lives easier, more entertaining, more productive, and more manageable. Our hope is that Gear Diary visitors find this site to be a welcoming, friendly, and accessible place to learn about and discuss interesting topics — and not only those that are tech-related! Gear Diary is a place to discover and explore all kinds of new gear, including smartphones, computers, kitchen gadgets, Toys, EDC, camping gear, or even your next new car! You can follow us on Twitter @GearDiarySite.

41 Comments on "Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary"

  1. A very cool tip to add custom words to the iPhone's dictionary:

  2. RT @GiantGizmoNews: iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

  3. Tip: voeg nu je eigen woordenlijst toe in IOS4. Zit enorm verstopt. Had nooit zelf kunnen vinden. #iphone

  4. iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary from @iNewsApp

  5. RT @geardiary: iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

  6. RT @Viper007Bond: RT @geardiary: iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

  7. @YaBoiD21 this site has instructions

  8. RT @GearDiarySite: iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

  9. Athanassios Ziampas | October 3, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  10. @mynejas I do have the 4, but check this and see if it helps anyway…

  11. @nkronberg allegedly…

  12. iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary #imd #fb

  13. Rob>Ron problem solved: thanks to @ScottieInTexas! New problem: unwanted globe button on keyboard:

  14. Tip of the day for iPhone: how to add words to iPhone dictionary!! Add your slang!

  15. @michelehinojosa add another keyboard and then add a word to the dictionary.

  16. Tired of hitting "X" or retyping on your iPhone?

  17. @butchmama that's a terrible mix-up that should never happen again! quick fix?

  18. Tired of your iPhone auto-correcting text messaging classics like 'Yo'? Add them to your phone's dictionary:

  19. RT @geardiarysite: iOS4 Tip: Add Custom Words to iPhone Dictionary

  20. @Molly23 Try adding words to the dictionary – explained at (among other places)

  21. Or you could use an Android phone that lets you change and add user-defined words while you’re typing them. Or change the keyboard you’re using. 

  22. So you are suggesting spending potentially hundreds of dollars getting a new phone, locking yourself for up to 2 years into a contract, abandoning up to thousands of dollars of app and music and movie and TV investments … to solve a simple issue easily handled with a Tip?

  23. Yes.

  24. haha … thanks for clarifying 🙂

  25. Not working for me 🙁 its still suggesting me some other words instead of the word added by me 🙁

  26. does not work on my phone either.. I think the point about the Android is really about the high cost to users of Apples walled garden/big brother policy. If Apple continue Android phones may become the run away better option.

  27. I added words, but when I compose a text, it still suggests the incorrect word. (ie: I type in hell, and it auto-corrects to he’ll).

  28. Same here. Not working for me on iPad either

  29. Why do you need to use the word “hell”? It should be an easily avoided word. The level of your conversations will be elevated by not using it. Try “heck”.

  30. It capitalised the v in KeV as its short for Kilo Electron Volts rather than a contraction of the name Kevin as far as an iPhone is concerned

  31. What the hell kind of a suggestion is that?

  32. how bout you just add a shortcut that says kev = kev?

  33. The good news is that iOS 5 doesn’t have this issue — the Kev one, anyway. =)

  34. I’ve tried every keyboard and I can’t get the edit user dictionary to appear! I have iPhone 4s

  35. My iPhone does not offer any way to edit the dictionary, I can only reset it. Also, there were no such screens when adding a Chinese keyboard on my device. Thank you for trying.

  36. You might try going into Settings>General>Keyboards>Text Replacement. Add the correct spelling with capitalization (or a symbol) for anything you are having trouble getting your phone to recognize, and then enter the letter combo that always gets the wrong word. I’ve done with with my name and multiple other words and symbols that iOS never seems to understand. I don’t know if this will work for other language keyboards, but it does work with the English keyboard.

Comments are closed.