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A Quick Guide:
Learn How to Type in Korean on Your Phone or Laptop

Typing in Korean can seem like a bit of a mystery unless you've learned how. For example, we know that Korean writing is formed of character units called Hangul, but how do these translate into typing? Do you need a new Korean keyboard? Is typing Korean a different process on a phone or laptop? The answers are actually a lot more simple than you might think and today we're going to try and teach you the basics so you can go and get practising on your own! 

For those of you who are completely unfamiliar with Korean language and/or don't know basic Hangul characters, we recommend checking out our article on how to learn the Korean alphabet in under 2 hours! We promise you it is entirely possible and once you've spent some time doing that, you can come back here and learn how to put Hangul into everyday use!

Step 1: Installing a Korean Keyboard

On your phone:

First things first, you don't need to buy a Korean keyboard to type Korean! You can type Hangul by adding a regular Korean keyboard. The Korean alphabet uses the same 26 alphabet keys, just reassigned to Korean vowels and consonants instead of Latin ones. This Korean keyboard with English is a unique keyboard for Android and iOS users allowing you to type easily in the Korean language. It also has advanced features like a dictionary option used to save the desired word that will be used mostly while typing in Korean.

 On your computer:

For Mac:

  1. Go to System Settings.

  2. Click on Keyboard, then Text input, then Input Sources.

  3. Click the plus (+) sign, then choose Korean, and select 2-Set Korean

For Windows:

  1. Go to Control Panel.

  2. Choose "Change keyboard or other input methods."

  3. Select "Change keyboards."

  4. Click "Add," then choose Korean (Korea), and pick Microsoft IME.

Once you've installed the keyboard software, you can use shortcuts to switch to the Korean keyboard. Now, let's learn about the Korean keyboard layout.

Step 2: Understanding Your Korean Keyboard / On-screen Keyboard

Depending on your computer, you could also opt for a keyboard for Windows or IMAC on Amazon.  You can also substitute with a Korean keyboard cover. It is much easier to switch back and forth when you’re not practising Korean. Make sure you find one that matches your computer keyboard. 


Most common Korean keyboard

Mnemonics, often misunderstood, are just helpful associations. They connect something familiar to what you're learning, making it easier to remember. For instance, to remember a phone number ending in 8125, you might think "ate a quarter." That's a mnemonic! Similarly, if you recall that the Korean letter ㅣ looks like a lowercase L, you're using a mnemonic. So, don't hesitate to create your own mnemonics—they're great for memory!

Korean Alphabet Table.png

Let's take a simple word (ka). To type it we must first type , then . The order is from the left of the character to the right.


Looking at a more complicated example: Samseong. To type the word 삼성 (samseong) we must start with the first syllable (sam). To type this we must first enter then, then  to get 삼 (sam). The order is top left > top right > bottom.


To get seong, we follow the same process  + . The result is  (seong) and the order is top left > top right > bottom.

For further examples check out the below video!

Step 3: Writing more than one word

Once you understand how to write one word correctly using your Korean keyboard, writing whole sentences is easy because it follows the same process. The Korean keyboard is so smart, that it will automatically know what words you're trying to type as long as you enter the vowels and consonants correctly. In this way, you will never have to tell it where one-word ends and another begins because it will already know! In some ways, it's even easier than writing in English!

OK maybe that's a long shot and while the process is the same, it is important to know the basic structure of the Korean language and grammar to ensure the keyboard recognises the words you're trying to type. Luckily for you, we have tonnes of free online resources to help you in this regard or you can even book some course time with one of our expert teachers!

Step 4: Practice!

While you can spend hours making sure you've brushed up on all the grammar and every keyboard sticker is perfectly in place, there is no substitute for actually typing in Korean as much as you physically can. At first, it can be really difficult to memorise where everything is on a Korean keyboard layout but we promise if you persevere you will pick it up in no time and be able to type without even looking at the keys! A great way to practice is by finding a Korean language partner who you can converse with either by text or email. Luckily there are loads of great apps out there that can help you do this. Check out some of our favourite Korean language learning apps below.

Woman Texting

Texting like a Korean

One question we get asked a lot is whether typing Hangul with your phone is more difficult than on a laptop. Actually it's even easier! It follows the same process but the keys are already labelled with the correct characters so you don't have to memorise which letter relates to which. Texting is also a great way to pick up on more casual language you wont find in a textbook. For example, do you know how to type hahaha in Korean? 

Check out this helpful video and see how many phrases you can use in your next Korean text message!

How To Text in Korean like a Pro by Santoverse 산토버스

How To Text in Korean like a Pro by Santoverse 산토버스

Now you know how to type in Korean, why not supplement that knowledge by improving your Korean vocabulary and grammar with one of our expert teachers?

We have both private and group courses available for all levels of Korean learners. Get in touch today and see how we can help you!

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