How to turn off the iPhone’s typing auto-correction

It turns the town of Sequim, Washington, into a “sequin.” A “squash” becomes a “squad” and “Vinyasa” yoga becomes “Bonuses” yoga.

The culprit is predictive text software of the sort found on most smartphones, such as the iPhone.

While this auto-correct feature is usually merely annoying, CNET.com reported yesterday that in Manchester, England, predictive text software had triggered a chain of events that resulted in a man’s death.  A Manchester area man who called his friend a “mutter” in a text message didn’t realized the cell phone’s predictive text software had transformed the word into “nutter.” As it turned out, the predictive text software was far more predictive than it had intended: The recipient flipped out, went to the sender’s home, and the resulting knife fight ended in the recipient’s death.

You’ll be relieved to know that on the iPhone, you can easily disable this dangerous weapon.

Tap Settings > General > Keyboard and then set Auto-Correction (which is On by default) to Off.

I sent this solution off to my friend Mike, the fellow who had been trying to key in the word Sequim but kept getting “sequin.”

Clearly, it works. Because a minute or two later Mike sent me back a text message that read “Thunks!”

NOTE: Please see the comments on this post for excellent reader tips on fine-tuning autocorrect.

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About Karen Anderson

To paraphrase Mark Morris, "I'm a writer; I write!" Just as a dancer dances to the music, I write to message and to the audience.
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7 Responses to How to turn off the iPhone’s typing auto-correction

  1. Lindsay says:

    You can also just type any letter (I use “x”) after the word the iPhone is trying to correct, then delete it. It won’t try to re-autocorrect because it assumes you’ve already manually corrected your (perceived) error. As far as sending what you meant…well, if that fails, at least you can add to the laughs at Damn You, Autocorrect!

  2. Rob says:

    You cannot turn off auto correct without disabling spell check. I want to see spelling errors without iPhone auto-correcting them. What a piece of junk.

    • John says:

      You can on my iphone4. Settings>General>Keyboard> takes you to a page where you can individually toggle auto for capitalization, correction, spelling, capslock, and shortcut.

  3. john says:

    The spell checker is a pain in the butt useful only for the illiterate

  4. chinitababe86 says:

    hey there. thanks for the post. it really helped me. hahaha!
    been surfing around the net to disable the auto correct feature of my iphone4.
    no more pain in the ass! :D

  5. GW says:

    The predictive text on Droids is much better…begins giving you options as soon as texting begins and lets you select it instead of “auto-correcting”…would love to see this on iphone

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