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How To Use Keyboards From App Store On iPhone Lock Screen

With iOS 8 third-party keyboards made it to the iPhone and simplified the typing a lot, e.g. with swiping or intelligent word suggestions. If you want to answer a message from Lock Screen, iOS does not use the preferred keyboard from the App Store though. It uses the default keyboard instead. We will show you how you can use any keyboard from the App Store on the Lock Screen.

Default keyboard on Lock Screen

3D Touch: If you want to answer a message on your Lock Screen, you have to press firmly the notification. Then the message window will open, where you can type in the message.

Without 3D Touch: If your iPhone is not supporting 3D Touch, you swipe the notification to the left and tap “View”.

However, iOS uses the default keyboard inside of this message window, even if you usually have been using a keyboard from the App Store, e.g. Swype or SwiftKey.  Even tapping the globe icon does not change it, because third-party keyboards cannot be selected on Lock Screen.

How to use any keyboard on the Lock Screen

Preliminary note: Deactivate “Rest Finger to Open“

Since the iOS 10 release you have to press the Home button to unlock your iPhone. You can modify this setting, so that you can unlock it by resting your finger on the Touch ID sensor.

Go to your Settings → General → Accessibility → Home Button and deactivate the option “Rest Finger to Open“.

This option needs to be deactivated before you continue. Otherwise this trick does not work.

How it works…

If your Lock Screen shows a notification, that you have received a message, and you want to respond directly by using your favorite keyboard, you have to unlock your iPhone. This means that you have to rest your finger on the Touch ID sensor for iOS 10 (see above).

If your iPhone is locked, you will see a lock icon on top of your screen. If your iPhone is unlocked, it will show an open lock icon on top.

Now open the message on the Lock screen like we have described above. iOS will use your preferred keyboard to respond to the message (in our case SwiftKey).

In summary: You have to unlock your iPhone, but you stay on your Lock Screen. As soon as your iPhone is unlocked you can use the keyboard from the App Store.