iOS 4.2 bugs: Keyboard shortcuts glitchy on iPad?

Has iOS 4.2 made those nifty keyboard shortcuts we posted about a couple weeks ago just a little bit glitchy on your iPad? Being able to tap and slide to capital letters, numbers, symbols, etc. is a real time saver but several of our readers are telling us they're either not working at all, working but resulting in random input instead of the right character, or sometimes working and sometimes not.

I had the problem at first but it seems to have stopped after a reboot. If you're having the problem we have the usual advice to help you fix it, after the break.

If you're not sure which keyboard shortcuts we're talking about, check out the original tip and video. Unfortunately, there's no secret to this one. Since it isn't consistent it's probably not a real bug in the OS but just a glitch for some of us who've updated. Here's what to try, from easy to annoying:

  • Restart the app.
  • Reboot the iPad.
  • Update the OS again in iTunes and restore from backup.
  • Update the OS again and start clean.

Yes, the last one is the nuclear option but sometimes there's a problem in the backup and no matter how many times you restore, you end up restoring that same problem again and again. Hopefully one of the first few solutions works for you and it doesn't come to that -- just know it's always an option.

If you're experiencing a glitchy keyboard on your iPad post iOS 4.2, and especially if you've found a work around, let us know in the comments!

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

iOS 4.2 bugs: Keyboard shortcuts glitchy on iPad?

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@west : the keyboard is not that color. calm down.
But i just tested out the glitch and it is happening to me! when i push caps and slide to a letter to make a cap letter, it randomly would work for some letters and some letters simply messed up. very glitchy! this is bad!

All I can say is I wish Apple would make that fancy pants black keyboard available throughout the entire iOS. How hard would it be to add a settings toggle for black or white keyboard? Le Sigh...

I'm only getting the wonky shift-slide behavior @tom mentioned, but I've never used that and don't see why I would. Everything else is fine. Of course, if you're jailbroken, all bets are off.

@Tom: I simply said I was "startled" and, unlike you, never used a single exclamation. I'm not the one who needs to calm down.
@Brian: Thanks for explaining that.

The slide move wasn't working for me on my new iPad. I've been using that shortcut on the iPhone for a long time, so being new to the iPad I assumed it just didn't work the same way - very disappointed I might add. I did a reset and it's working now. NICE!

I'm no iPad owner but AFAIK the keyboard is only black on the lockscreen, if you have a word as your lock code.
Another iOS 4.2.1 bug with the keyboard on the iPhone (which even made the mainstream press here) is that in the German and German (Swiss) keyboards, the letters é and è are no longer accessible through tap-and-hold on E. This is quite annoying for those of us who often have to write French names and the likes.. :(

At least they make it available... Shouldnt be hard for a JB tweak to come out to always use that keyboard ;)

In addition to making a toggle for keyboard color, they need to redesign the horizontal keyboard. I don't need the buttons that large, and I do NEED an apostrophe button on the alphabet screen. This is the one thing that keeps me from typing at near full speed. In fact, because of the omission of this one button I have to hunt and peck as opposed to holding my hands over the home row.
Does anyone know if there is a jailbreak app for this?

Only happens to me in the shift-drag, not the numlock-drag. Very annoying. will do a backup, reset, restore from backup process and post back if that fixes it or not.

@BEAR "...I do NEED an apostrophe button on the alphabet screen"
A quick flick upwards on the comma key will generate an apostrophe.

I have got around the glitch by typing my password in another location and then copy + paste it where I needed it. Not the greatest, but workable.

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