Pogue's Awesome iPhone Period-Typing Shortcut

Spin This!

New Member
May 4, 2007
Didn't see this posted yet but if it is, it's worth posting again....

From Pogue’s Awesome iPhone Period-Typing Shortcut:

The punctuation keys and alphabet keys appear in two different keyboard layouts.

So every time you want to type a period or a comma, it’s a three-step, awkward dance: (1) Tap the “.?123” key in the lower left to summon the punctuation layout. (2) Type the period. (3) Type the ABC key in the lower left to return to the alphabet layout.

Imagine how excruciating it is to type, for example, “a P.O. Box in the U.S.A.”! That’s 34 finger taps and 10 mode changes!

And thereforee imagine how thrilled I was to receive an email from reader Andrew McCallum, containing a method of typing a period or a comma with only a SINGLE finger gesture.

The iPhone doesn’t register most key presses until you *release* your finger. But Andrew discovered that the Shift and Punctuation keys register their taps on the *press-down* instead.

So here’s what you can do, all in one motion:

1. Touch the “.?123” key, but don’t lift your finger as the punctuation layout appears.

2. Slide your finger a half inch onto the period or comma key, and release.

Incredibly, the ABC layout returns automatically. You’ve typed a period or a comma with one finger touch instead of three. In fact, you can type ANY of the punctuation symbols the same way.


If you forget to slide your finger, the space bar after punctuation and numbers reverts to the ABC board, and adds the space


Jul 10, 2007
Sweet, good job Apple. The funny thing is they let you stumble across this stuff. Usually companies throw this in your face... Thanks for posting.