Simplifying form data entry on iPad and iPhone

Using the correct tags in your input fields can make entering form data significantly faster and easier for your visitors and that can mean better response rates for your kiosks.

iOS supports the autocorrect and autocapitalize tags to help define when it should attempt to help users fill in a form field. In most kiosk applications, it is preferable to turn auto-correct off, especially in fields with non-standard input (like name, for example) as in: <input type="text" autocorrect="off"></input>

The autocapitalize tag has several options:

  • 'none' - no words are automatically capitalized, although the shift option remains available.
  • 'sentences' - capitalizes the first letter of each sentence automatically.
  • 'words' - capitalizes the first letter of each word automatically.
  • 'characters' - capitalize all characters automatically (useful for state abbreviations).
  • 'off' and 'on' - while these both work (as 'none' or 'sentences', respectively) in current versions of iOS, they are deprecated.

For fields accepting numerical input like a zip code, you can use the pattern tag to trigger the numeric keyboard on focus: <input type="text" pattern="[0-9]*"></input>. While less semantically correct in some cases, you can also use <input type="tel"></input> to trigger the numeric keyboard.

For fields with  <input type="url"></input>, the keyboard will include a '.com' button in the bottom row.  For fields with <input type="email"></input>, the keyboard will include an '@' symbol button in the bottom row.  

If you don't have control of the form code itself, you can enable or disable "Auto-Capitalization', 'Auto-Correction' and 'Check Spelling' in the iPad settings under General > Keyboard.

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