TMCnet Feature
August 14, 2019

The Evolution of Text Correction Tools: What Will Happen to Them in The Future

There was a time when all you do as a writer was manual, crude, and rudimentary. From moving on the keys of the keyboard for typing in your words to putting in punctuations and even ensuring that the spellings are right and that you are maintaining the rules of the text language. This method is highly inefficient and brings more pains than gains to the writer, especially to the frequent user of the keyboard.

Then, the advent of electronic media brought innovations to the world of typing and texting. For the very first time, text correction tools came in the form of ‘T9’ for text prediction and correction of spellings. While this creation considerably brought ease into texting, mostly with its auto spell correct, however, it was still largely limited in its use, functionality, and application. Advanced features such as plagiarism check, plagiarism checker with percentage, proofreader were not even intentions of its creators. Hence, it was completely void of them. Gladly, these dreams have been achieved today with the advent of modern text correction tools.

This article focuses on examining the evolution of text correction tools; their weaknesses, and strengths over the years, also, how well they have emerged, including their prospects for the future.

The Early Text Correction Tool and Its Features

T9 Predictive Text

Anyone who used any of the mobile devices available in the late 1990s would probably remember the T9 texting technology. It simply is a system that allows text on 9 keys! It is the predictive text technology for mobile phones. Its main objective was to make it easier to input text messages on the phone, and it helps to eliminate the need for multiple punches of a key on the keypad of the mobile device which was the mode by which the keypad worked.

T9 predictive text works to combine the group of letters on the keypads with a fast-access to a dictionary and orders them according to the frequency of use and offers to the user so that he can choose the word he wants by pressing the ‘next’ button. The user is thus spared of the long process of multi-tapping. Also, the user can expand his dictionary by adding words which he uses, this feature is a progenitor of the windows autocorrect seen today.

Features of the T9 Predictive Text

Smart Punctuation

Using the ‘1’ key, a user of the T9 predictive text can insert smart punctuation such as full stop at the end of the sentence, apostrophes in words such as “can’t, won’t, isn’t” and so on. It also features word breaking punctuation to support clitics such as “ ’m in I’m”.

Storage of Words

For future references, words that are uniquely used by the user can be stored. Although, this number of words stored depends on the implementation of the storage feature and the language of input.

Adaptation to Usage Pattern

When a user frequently uses a word more than other words, the T9 dictionary favors it in the order of word suggestion for the user. This is known as textonyms; for example, pressing ‘4663’ matches “good, home, gone, hood” etc. on the prediction, but if a user uses “good” more than any other words, good will tend to be the first suggestion.

Word Completion

When user inputs matching keypresses, the T9 text input can offer completion for such text.

Primary and Secondary Languages

T9 predictions, as they grew permitted access to a choice of selecting a primary and secondary language and matches from both languages.

Auto-correction of Texting Errors

This is another wonderful feature of the T9 predictive text, errors made in texting can be automatically corrected.

The Present-day Text Correction Tools and Their Features

The numerous advantages of improvements in technology have tremendously influenced texting, typing, and writing today. We can boldly be proud of moving from the era of T9 to a smart input on the Qwerty keyboard, which is easier, faster, more convenient, and even smarter in every sense of the input. It is easy to find a plagiarism checker on-screen, word count, thesaurus, spelling and grammar checker, and so on.

Features of Today’s Text Correction Tools

Punctuation Checker

Today, text correction tools do not only allow you to write, but also insert punctuations to your text in case you have omitted them. Grammarly, ProWriting Aid, and even Microsoft (News - Alert) Word, among many others, allow this feature.

Spell checker

Does texting affect writing? Yes, it does! And you can be sure that with today’s spell checker in the correction tools available, you will have a free flow of correct words in your papers because incorrect words are immediately underlined and offered suggestions for correction.


You don’t need to have excessive words that are irrelevant in your writing anymore. The correction tools have made it easy to paraphrase and remove needless details in your writing.


Do you wish to convert your document from English to French? Or vice versa? You don’t have to worry; you will find the right tools on certain text correction tools to help you achieve this.

Grammar checker

There are virtual editors in the correction tools available today that can help improve grammar and limit errors to the minimum in your documents.

Plagiarism Checker

You don’t need to wait for hours before you know if you have plagiarized anymore, the percentage of plagiarism in what you have written can be promptly displayed when you request for it today using these text tools.


We can’t underestimate the ease of use of these writing tools today. Some of these writing tools even come with a Virtual Writing Tutor to improve the writing and grammar of users. They can as well be used for mails and even social media writings to make them error-free.

Prospects of Text Correction Tools for the Future

While modern text correction tools have displayed amazing levels of functionality and interactive abilities, it is noteworthy that these tools are perpetually evolving, and it is safe to say that they are not only getting smarter but also improving their functionalities and ease of use by the day.

We have seen features like clarity, correctness, conciseness, engagement, readability, delivery, real-time assistance and virtual teaching being offered for text correction, which might make one wonder if there is any new thing they still can bring to our lives. But without any doubt, the answer remains ‘yes’.

Lesser Strictness on Suggestions

Some limitations and challenges are often encountered when using text correction tools, which are headaches to users moments when they occur. One of these greatest challenges is the forceful corrections which text tools recommend and which when followed, render a sentence or thought completely useless. This phenomenon tends to reveal that text correction tools prove to be smarter than the humans that use them, and they end up conveying this wrongly.

Thanks to text correction tools, we get corrections for errors in our text, and even sometimes, we get more than what we bargain for! Let’s look at one of these circumstances –passive voice correction:

Some of the leading text correction tools have grammar checkers that have an aversion for passive voice. Thus, if you write a sentence with a passive voice, it gets flagged with suggestions for changing it. Take as an example, if you write “the song was composed by Michael Jackson (News - Alert),” a text correction tool marks it as passive voice, and you get suggestions to change it to active voice, hence “Michael Jackson composed the song” becomes the corrected sentence. Great right? Yes! But what if you have this sentence “the new video was shot by the pool,” what do you get? “The pool shot the new video.” Funny, yet, it is encountered in text corrections.

Thus, it is not too great a demand to expect lesser strictness on suggestions, as sometimes, meanings get jumbled when they interfere too rigidly with what a writer has in mind.

Help with Content Creation

We have seen all forms of aids to text correction, but can these tools take their game a little higher in the future by actually helping millions of writers who are stuck on ideas for writing, or writers experiencing a block? The truth is that not all problems of the writer can be fixed by spelling or grammar checks. When a writer runs out of ideas in the course of writing, can our text tools help with suggestions for the content being created?

What about text correction tools that can write with you –in the sense of real-time check-up of the facts, figures, and information you include in your text for their accuracy? This should not be too much to expect, and in fact should be a feature we should hope to see soon, among many other amazing additions.

With what we have seen over the years, there is no limit to what we can expect from these aids to writing, since the acceptability and use of these tools depend on how effective they are in doing our writing and texting flawless, impeccable, and improved. We can be assured that work is in progress to improve them by the developers since naturally, users would opt for tools that best fix their writing challenges. Therefore, we can watch out for the next level of intelligence of text correction tools and hope the bugs we see today are fixed totally.

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