The Google owned keyboard app – Gboard has been the default input app on most of the Android smartphones. Although the Gboard supports all the major languages including Urdu but for Pakistani users the app was not much popular who use to write the ‘Roman Urdu’.
Urdu is one of the most neglected languages on major digital platforms but the new development, we will talk about in the coming paragraphs, has changed the trend hoping for even more steps to promote Urdu in the digital world.
Knowing the facts stated here, Google has now silently added a new feature that might be the perfect solution for all Urdu speaking people around the globe. The Gboard can automatically convert Roman Urdu to Plain Urdu in its original script on real-time basis.
So it automatically changes, for example, “tumhara naam kia hai” to “تمہارا نام کیا ہے۔”
Need of the Time
It is estimated that over 150 million people can understand, speak and write in Urdu around the globe. Different chatting and social media platforms made it easier to convey one’s message to the others but language barrier hindered the opportunity a lot. People therefore opted for the Roman Urdu (writing Urdu sentences while typing in English) to express themselves on such platforms.
In the absence of a better option, this spoiled style gained popularity in Urdu speaking communities. Even politicians used this mode while expressing themselves on Twitter. As all the keyboards consisted of English alphabets, people were forced to use Roman Urdu.
Gboard’s ability to recognize and convert Roman Urdu into regular Urdu is surprisingly accurate. There are options available for different local languages of the country like Sindhi or Kashmiri but Urdu is the default one.
How to Download & Use
The recent update of Gboard has notably solved the issue and you may follow these steps and let Google do the rest.
- Download and install Gboard from Google Play Store or the Apple App Store.
- Open the keyboard and follow instructions that will ask you to select the keyboard as input method.
- Go to Gboard settings and select Languages option. You will have to deselect “Use System Language”.
- Now browse the list of languages provided by Gboard, and select “Urdu (abc)”.
- You can also choose Urdu Pakistan if you want Urdu input layout rather than the Roman one.
- The job is done and you have Gboard’s new feature at your disposal to use as you want.
- Keyboard’s typing language can be changed on the go by pressing and holding spacebar for a second and opting for Urdu on the popup screen.