Foreign Languages in Windows Phone 8 Part 2

Continued from Foreign Languages in Windows Phone 8 Part 1

The available keyboards on your Windows Phone OS depends on where you bought your device. I purchased mine in Shanghai so it came with Simple Chinese, Traditional Chinese, and English. If you're learning a new language or make use of foreign language apps such as Ascendo's excellent Ascendo French-English Dictionary or Tango Master for Japanese, it's handy to add additional input types on your smartphone. There are some language apps such as Learn Spanish for Beginniners that don't need keyboard input or speech recognition, but if you plan to type (and listen) in your target language in Word, OneNote, or even in Outlook, then adding the speech modules and keyboards can only help.

To add an additional keyboard:

1. In the Settings screen, tap Keyboard
2. Tap Add keyboards

3. Select the keyboards you want to add your device and then tap the Add button.

4. Depending on your wireless connection, it takes awhile to download the input module so use Wi-Fi rather than your data plan (Installing French and Spanish on my phone took roughly 15 minutes). Your Windows Phone will then reboot.

5. In the Settings screen, tap Keyboard. Tap your newly added keyboard to change settings.

6. For foreign language learners, the Suggest text option is invaluable for easy typing. Each input keyboard has its own settings for misspelled words, suggesting text and capitalizing text. The keyboard options are global so changes will apply to any app or screen on your Windows phone.

To use your new keyboard:

1. When tapping on a text box, the keyboard will be displayed like normal. Tap EN (if EN is your default language) repeatedly to toggle across all your installed keyboards. To display all installed keyboards, long press EN (if EN is your default language) and tap which keyboard you want to use. In the screenshot below, Japanese, Spanish and French are the options on my Lumia 925.

2. Your keyboard will offer suggestions as you type foreign language text in an app. Like Android and iOS keyboards, hold down a letter to display additional glyphs for a specific language.

Continued in Foreign Languages in Windows Phone 8 Part 3


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