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Apple’s Autocorrect Feature in iOS Continues to Frustrate

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Apple’s autocorrect feature on iOS continues to irritate a significant number of users.

Sometimes, it seems as if Apple’s autocorrect feature on iOS seems to work against you instead of helping you. For a feature that’s been around for over ten years, it still severely lacks functionality (via Daring Fireball), and now many people are fed up.

Michael Tsai has collected a number of quotes from developers on the subject of autocorrect, reflecting various opinions on the feature.

The first quote comes from Steve Troughton-Smith, who thinks that Apple’s current (and past) iteration of autocorrect is a “trainwreck”:

Apple really needs to throw out its crowdsourced machine-learned autocorrect system entirely. Autocorrect used learn from everything I typed, now it interjects with typos & weirdisms from random internet users. It’s been a complete train wreck since they introduced this stuff.

Ken Kocienda, a developer that worked on the autocorrect feature, however, believes that autocorrect is a “trustworthy piece of software”:

Autocorrect is as much psychology as technology. When I made the autocorrect system for the original iPhone, I thought a lot about whether people would understand the results they got. Even if people didn’t get want they want, I still wanted the results to seem sensible.

Building a trustworthy piece of software is as much about not doing the wrong thing as it is doing the right thing, and I think many developers don’t quite understand how one weird result can undo the positive perceptions from fifty good results.

Oluseyi Sonaiya tweeted that he believes the iOS hasn’t improved at all; in fact, they’ve gotten worse over the past two years, he claims:

But… WHY is the iOS keyboard so bad? It has actually regressed in the past two years, and I’m not talking about the spelling suggestions; I’m talking about the blue-underline grammar replacement substituting two words for one, duplicating the preceding word. How did this ship?!

For a feature that’s been around for over a decade, seeing these kinds of complaints means Apple has some work to do on the feature. Share your autocorrect experiences in the comments below.

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