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What is Predictive Texting? T9 Messaging

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Predictive Texting, also known as T9 Messaging, is a mobile phone feature that allows for a faster typing of SMS messages. When using Predictive Texting you press each key once to enter any of the letters on the key.

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The predictive texting software on your mobile phone will combine all your key presses into common words and attempt to guess the word you intended to type. Your key presses may result in more than one word; in such a case your mobile phone will display a list of all possible word combinations.

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Predictive Texting is faster than the conventional texting method. Here is an example:

The alpha-numeric key of a mobile phone is arranged as follows:

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1 2 (a b c) 3 (d e f)

4 (g h i) 5 (j k l) 6 (m n o)

7 (p q r s) 8 (t u v) 9 (w x y z)

Assuming you want to type the word “Predictive” using predictive texting you simply type 7733428483. This as you can see require only 10 key presses which is equal to the number of letters in the word. Using conventional texting we would have pressed 7777333444222844488833.

This gives 21 key presses for the same word. As you can see using predictive texting led to a more than 50% reduction in the number of keys pressed in entering this particular word.

Now lets take a second example assuming you want to type the word “Fast” using predictive texting type 3278. Using our mobile phone the entry was “East” instead of “Fast“. However the mobile phone gives us options to check other word combinations that are related to the key combination. On pressing a key we select the word we want “Fast“.

Hence with 5 key presses we have entered the word we want using predictive texting. Other word options that were displayed with this key combination were dart, eart, fart and ecst. Using conventional texting we would have pressed the key pad 9 times 333277778.

So as you can see predictive texting or T9 Messaging makes for faster texting and is a great tool for people who use text messaging a lot.

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Paschal Okafor is NaijaTechGuide Team Lead. The article What is Predictive Texting? T9 Messaging was written by Paschal Okafor. The article was last modified: May 23rd, 2016

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