How to View Alternate Characters on the iPhone Keyboard

There are plenty of keys and character variations that the small keyboard of the iPhone simply can’t fit on the screen. However, accented characters and other extra options are available—they’re merely hidden so as to take up little space. You can use this tip anytime you’re using the iPhone’s onscreen keyboard to see more options. Here’s how to view alternate characters on the keyboard.

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When the keyboard is active:

  • Hold and press a key to see your extra options.

  • Slide your finger up and to the key you’d like to select.

  • For example, the hyphen, when long pressed, reveals an en and em dash and bullet point.

  • When long pressing the “e”, you’ll see accented variations of the letter.

It’s a good idea to long press various keys and characters just to see what your options are. And if you speak more than one language, this tip is also helpful for writing and texting with proper accents.

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Conner Carey's writing can be found at She is currently writing a book, creating lots of content, and writing poetry via @conpoet on Instagram. She lives in an RV full-time with her mom, Jan and dog, Jodi as they slow-travel around the country.