This year has seen a big change in the way I “consume Web content” (can you tell I’ve been, maybe, consuming a little too much Web content lately?). Earlier in the year I finally upgraded my iPhone, which I’d had for ages. The new phone (an iPhone 5) was blazingly fast in comparison to my old phone, and I found myself utilizing a number of apps, like Pocket, Feedly and Flipboard, quite frequently.
Unfortunately, this also meant a reduction in the number of blog comments I made. Typing my comments into the comment form was easy, just like typing in a text, but typing in the other fields – name, email and website URL – was a pain and made the whole process feel too protracted. And for the email and website fields, one little mistake and you have to re-do the whole thing.
For a while there, I’d send links to myself with the intention of commenting when I got back on my laptop, but as with many good intentions, I just ended up with a lot of emails to myself about which I did nothing.
Earlier this year, I’d also been following a thread – on the Google+ Book Bloggers community, I think it was – where someone discussed using keyboard shortcuts in order to comment via his or her phone. I promptly added some shortcuts – and then forgot about the whole thing.
Last night, as I was taking a break from a deadline, I started reading blogs on my phone, and for some reason, I remembered those shortcuts. I decided to give them a try – and they worked beautifully! Now it only takes me a few seconds to get the name, email and website fields filled, so I can spend the rest of my time typing in my comment. I don’t type anywhere near as fast on the phone as I do on my laptop, but still, this is quite an improvement.
And I discovered I could actually comment from within Feedly, where I keep all the blog feeds I follow!
If you have an iPhone and want to try out the keyboard shortcuts, it’s really easy to set up (these instructions are for the iPhone 5 but I expect they won’t be any different for the iPhone 6).
- Go to Settings, then General, then Keyboard.
- Click on Add New Shortcut. Enter the phrase you want to use the shortcut for, and the shortcut itself – use a short letter and/or symbol combo for your shortcut that you know you won’t be likely to use while typing out emails or texts on your phone. They should be easy to remember, too. Right now I’m using “bw”, “mb@” and “mb&” for my name, email and website, respectively, but I may change these to something even easier to remember, like “eee” for email and “hhh” for website.
- Click Save.
And that’s it!
If you use an Android phone, you can create shortcuts by going to the Language & Input section under Settings, then the Personal Dictionary. Detailed instructions can be found here.
Once you have your shortcuts set, all you have to do is remember them when you’re blog commenting. It definitely makes commenting from your phone much easier! I’ve really missed commenting on other blogs, and it’s so nice to know I can now do it quickly and easily while I’m on my phone.
Do you use your phone to comment on blog posts? If you do, do you have any other tips for making the process easier and more effortless?