Tamil in Android 5.1




My Android phone got updated to Android 5.1. With this, I got the long pending feature of Tamil interface in official Android OS release. Besides Tamil, many other Indian languages like Telugu, Marathi, Malayalam have also found a place.

Here are my observations regarding Tamil in Android 5.1

* The Tamil interface has been implemented throughout OS.
* Most of the Google Apps like Gmail, Drive, Maps automatically switch to Tamil interface.
* Apps like Facebook, Whatsapp which have Tamil support detect the system language and automatically change to Tamil.
* Google Voice input is able to detect many Tamil nouns and common Tamil words typed using transliteration in English across web. Not sure, if this was working earlier too. But, it was a surprise to see that many of the Tamil voice searches to be answered correctly. This can be very handy while searching for videos and music.
* Google search results push Tamil Wikipedia results to the top.
* Only sore point is that I have no clue how to use the default Google Tamil (India) keyboard. I haven’t found this interface anywhere. This keyboard looks broken as I am unable to figure out how to type uyirmei (Vowel + Consonant combination) letters.
The new layout for Tamil looks like aiming to keep gesture / swipe typing needs in future. Uyirmei letters can be written using long press for the vowel. This is definitely not intuitive or user friendly and hope they fix in the next release with the combined logic.