Do you type the same phrases over and over on your Mac? You can save time by enabling text expansion in macOS or using a third-party app that may have a few additional features useful to you.
Mac’s Built-In Automatic Text Replacement
- Open System Preferences and click on Keyboard.
- Click on Text.
- Click the “+” sign to add a next text expansion trigger.
- As you can see from the graphic below, I’ve added a trigger to replace “2270” with my complete address
- You’ll notice that Apple has included two triggers automatically: “omw” actives “on my way” and “brb” expands to “Be right back.” If you don’t want to use these text expansions, you can click on them and hit the “- “ sign to delete them.
Other Text Replacement Shortcut Utilities for the Mac
There are various macOS apps and utilities that take text expansion up a notch from the operating system’s built-in features. One popular one is TextExpander, which lets you instantly insert snippets of text from a repository of emails, boilerplate and other content, as you type by using a quick search or abbreviation. Pricing starts at US$3.33 per month for an individual user.
Another popular app is my favorite, TypeIt4Me, which expands your shorthand abbreviations on-the-fly. It costs $19.99 and no subscription is required.
Of course, if you don’t have a lot of text expansion needs and/or don’t want to fork out any money, just go with macOS’s built-in feature.