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Text faster using custom shortcutsLearn how to cut your text message response time in half using customized typing shortcuts for common phrases.
-Text messaging is the perfect way to communicate simple messages very quickly. Sometimes the messages can fly by so fast and furious that it can be hard to keep up. I'm Donald Bell for cnet.com. And I'm trying to stay in touch with the CNET Team during the madness of a trade show or convention. The only way I can keep on top of it all is use custom shortcuts for common phrases. One example I'm all too familiar with is when I'm running late. I'm gonna warn people but I'm already stressed out and I don't wanna waste anymore time pecking with the keyboard so I have my phone set so I can just type the letter R-L and the phrase "Running Late" pops right up. I hit the spacebar, I hit send and my conscience is clear. On the iPhone, I set this up by going to settings, general, keyboard and shortcuts. By default, Apple includes a shortcut for "on my way" if you type the letters OMW. If that feels a little too dramatic, you can remove the exclamation mark and hit Save. To make a new shortcut, hit the Add button, type the full phrase you wanna make a shortcut for and then put the shortcut beneath it. Some other common shortcuts include "BRB" for be right back, "THX" for thanks or "NP" for no problem. Making shortcut through e-mail address can also be a big time saver. These shortcuts work in text messages which you can also use some for e-mails or any place where the keyboard is used and you wanna save some time. Now if you're an Android Smartphone, finding the setting is going to differed depending on what version of Android you have. For example on the Galaxy S III here from Samsung, I'll bring up the keyboard, hi the gear for keyboard settings, make sure the predictive text switch is switched on then tap the phrase "Predictive Text". Scroll down to the bottom then select "Auto Substitution list". There's a fairly extensive lists already here but you can add your own by tapping the plus button just like we do with the iPhone. So there you go, that's my favorite way to stay on top of text messages when I'm out at trade show and every second counts. For more How To's like t his, visit howto.cnet.com. For CNET, I'm Donald Bell.