How To Move and Reposition iPad Onscreen Keyboard

The iPad features an onscreen keyboard that allows you to easily enter text. By default, the keyboard appears at the bottom of the screen when you tap a text field. However, you can customize the keyboard by moving it around the screen or splitting/merging it.

Enable Floating Keyboard

The floating keyboard is a smaller, movable version of the full onscreen keyboard. To enable it:

  1. Go to Settings > General > Keyboard
  2. Turn on Floating Keyboard

Once enabled, you can access the floating keyboard by:

  • Pinching in on the full keyboard using two fingers to make it smaller
  • Tapping and holding the minimize keyboard key (arrow icon) in the bottom right and selecting Floating

You can then drag the floating keyboard anywhere on the screen.

Split Keyboard

You can split the onscreen keyboard in half to make typing with your thumbs easier. To split the keyboard:

  1. Go to Settings > General > Keyboard
  2. Turn on Split Keyboard

When split, you can drag the two halves up or down the screen independently. To merge the split keyboard back into one, pinch in on the keyboard with two fingers.

Note: The split keyboard option is only available on certain iPad models with a Home button.

Undock Keyboard

Undocking moves the keyboard up from the bottom of the screen so it floats in the middle. To undock:

  1. Tap a text field to open the keyboard
  2. Tap and hold the minimize keyboard key
  3. Select Undock from the menu

You can then drag the undocked keyboard anywhere vertically. To redock the keyboard at the bottom, tap and hold the minimize key and select Dock.

Dock and Merge Keyboard

If your keyboard is both split and undocked, tap and hold the minimize keyboard key and select Dock and Merge to return it to the default layout at the bottom of the screen.

Customize Other Keyboard Settings

There are a few other settings you can customize for the onscreen keyboard:

  • Show Lowercase Keys: Turn this off to only show uppercase letters on the keyboard, which some find easier to see.
  • Auto-Correction: Turn this on or off based on your typing preferences.
  • .”.! Shortcut:** Add a period and space when you double tap the spacebar.

You can also set up custom keyboard shortcuts in Settings > General > Keyboard > Shortcuts to quickly enter commonly used phrases.

Use an External Keyboard

If you regularly type a lot on your iPad, connecting an external Bluetooth keyboard can make the process faster and easier. Apple’s Magic Keyboard allows you to precisely move the cursor, quickly edit text, and use keyboard shortcuts.

Many people find typing on an external keyboard more comfortable than the onscreen keyboard. It also gets the onscreen keyboard out of the way so you can see more content on the screen.


The iPad’s onscreen keyboard is very versatile. You can move it around the screen, split or merge it, undock it, and customize its settings to optimize the typing experience. Connecting an external keyboard is also an excellent way to boost productivity on the iPad. Experiment with the different options to find your ideal keyboard setup.