One of the best ways to learn Korean is to get out there and practice!
If you’re living in Korea, these opportunities come easily… eating out, going to the shops, asking for directions, taking taxis… but if you live outside of Korea, you might have fewer opportunities.
Chatting to Koreans online can be a great way of getting some Korean practice in, but first you’ll need to learn how to type in Korean.
And that's exactly what you'll learn how to do in this post, no matter which device you're using.
Table of Contents
Why Learn How To Type In Korean?
Learning to type in Korean has many benefits.
First, if you’ve come across an unfamiliar word, you’ll be able to type it straight into an online dictionary and find the definition.
Next, if you’ve got some Korean friends and you’d like to keep in touch with them, you’ll be able to easily message them in Korean. Oh, and you can install Korean keyboards on your phones or laptops!
It might take a while to get used to it, but once you’ve got the hang of typing in Korean, you’ll find it to be a fun and rewarding experience!
It’s really important to note that you should already be familiar with Hangeul, in other words, the Korean alphabet, before moving onto typing in Korean. Knowing Hangeul is essential to be able to type effectively in Korean.
Types Of Korean Keyboard
First, you'll need to learn a little bit more about Korean keyboards. Thankfully, like learning Hangeul, using Korean keyboards is pretty straightforward.
There are two main types of Korean keyboard, 2-set and 3-set. There are other layouts too, but 2-set is by far the most common layout for Korean speakers, so this is the one we’re going to look at.
I imagine that if you’re reading this article, you don’t have a keyboard with Hangeul on the keys. That’s nothing to worry about though, because with a bit of practice you’ll be typing in Korean without looking!
If you’d rather have a visual guide, you can buy Korean keyboard stickers. Then you’ll have no problem remembering which key is which!
You can also get keyboard covers, which you can just easily place and remove on top of your keyboard. Whether you’ve got a Mac or a PC, there’s plenty of options available.
There’s also the option of Korean keyboard websites. These are websites which have the Korean keyboard built in, so you can get typing in Korean without installing the keyboard onto your laptop. These websites can be handy if you need to type something quickly.
How To Install A Korean Keyboard On Your Device
Now that you know a little more about Korean keyboards, I'm going to show you how to install them on any device. This is the most important step to get started with typing in Korean. After all, how would you type without a keyboard?
Installing A Korean Keyboard On A Mac
Installing the Korean keyboard on a Mac is relatively straightforward:
- Click on the Apple logo in the left-hand corner of the screen and click on ‘System Preferences’.
- Once there, click on ‘Keyboard’.
- Under ‘Input Sources’ click the plus sign to add a new keyboard input.
- From there you scroll down until you find ‘Korean’. You can now choose to add 2-Set Korean as a keyboard input by pressing ‘Add’.
- Done! To quickly switch your keyboard input, click the flag at the of the menu bar on your Mac.
- 2-Set Korean will now appear as an option.
Installing A Korean Keyboard On An iPhone
- Go to ‘Settings’ on your iPhone.
- Tap on ‘General’.
- Tap on ‘Keyboard’.
- Here you will see the number of keyboards you have installed. Click on ‘Keyboards’.
5. Next you'll be able to add a new keyboard. Search for Korean or scroll down to find it.
6.Tap on Korean to add it and select your preferred layout. I recommend ‘Standard’.
7. Once you’re in an app where you can type, you’ll see a globe logo next to the spacebar. Click on this to switch between your keyboards.
Installing A Korean Keyboard On Android
If you’re using an Android phone, there are a few options for different keyboards depending on your preferences, and which Android phone you have.
Although there are different keyboards available (for example, Gboard or Microsoft SwiftKey), all keyboard inputs can be managed through the Android settings menu.
- Go to ‘Settings’ and tap on ‘System’.
- From there, tap on ‘Languages & input’.
- Here you can tap on your keyboard to access the settings. If you’re using Gboard, under ‘Keyboards’ tap ‘Virtual keyboard’.
4. Once you have tapped on your keyboard, you will enter another menu. Select ‘Languages’. In Gboard, tap ‘Gboard’ and go to ‘Languages’.
5. Here you will see a list of languages you can install. Select Korean.
6. The Korean keyboard will install itself and you’ll be able to use it whenever you want! You can also change the layout if you want.
7. On the SwiftKey keyboard, you can switch to Korean by swiping along the language that appears at the bottom of the keyboard. If you’re using Gboard, you can switch languages by holding the spacebar.
Installing A Korean Keyboard On A Samsung Phone
If you’re using a Samsung phone, the process is a little different. Of course, as a Korean company, Samsung have their own Korean keyboard!
- Open the ‘Settings’ menu on your phone.
- Go to ‘General management.
- Tap ‘Language and input’.
- Check under ‘Default keyboard’ that you’re using the Samsung Keyboard. If you’re using Gboard or Microsoft SwiftKey, check the instructions above.
- Next, tap on ‘On-screen keyboard’.
- Tap on ‘Samsung Keyboard’.
- Select ‘Languages and types’.
- Now, go to ‘Manage input languages’.
- Turn on Korean 한국어 and voila!
- When you’re typing, you can switch to Korean by clicking on the globe symbol next to the spacebar on the Samsung keyboard.
Installing A Korean Keyboard On Windows
There are different ways to install the Korean language keyboard depending on which version of Windows you’re using. The steps in this section are for Windows 10.
- First go to the Start menu and click on ‘Settings’.
- From ‘Settings’, click on ‘Time & Language’.
3. Under ‘Preferred languages’, click on ‘Add a language’.
4. Search for ‘Korean’ in the bar and click on it. Then click on ‘Next’ to initiate the download of the Korean language pack.
5. You will then be able to select the features you wish to install. That’s it! You’re now able to type in Korean on Windows!
6. Once you’ve got the Korean language installed, it’s easy to switch the language on Windows. On the bottom menu bar, click on the language you are currently using (in our case, ENG). There you can easily change the input language to Korean.
Learning How To Type In Korean With A Korean Keyboard
Great! So now you’ve installed the Korean keyboard on your device. Of course, the next step is to be able to type in Korean.
If you’re choosing not to use Korean keyboard stickers or a keyboard cover, typing in Korean can take some getting used to.
This is where it’s essential to know how Hangeul functions, as this is the basis of typing in Korean. We’re going to be looking at the standard 2-Set Korean keyboard.
Using the 2-Set Korean keyboard, you can see that all the consonants are on the left side of the keyboard. You’ll notice that the aspirated consonants appear above the consonant they correspond to. But how do you use them? Well, just press the shift key and ㅂ will become ㅃ!
All the vowels on the Korean keyboard are on the right side of the keyboard. So, when you’re getting to grips with the Korean keyboard don’t forget that consonants are on the left, and vowels are on the right.
Again, if you need to type ㅒ or ㅖ, just press shift! Consonants are usually followed by vowels in Korean, so having them on different sides of the keyboard makes it easy to type words. For more on Korean consonants and vowels, check out my Korean pronunciation post.
Much like when you’re writing in Korean, you need to type by forming syllable blocks. The keyboard will automatically create words for you.
If you want to type out 안녕, as you type out the individual components (ㅇ ㅏ ㄴ ㄴ ㅕ ㅇ), the keyboard will put them together as 안녕!
So, you just need to type out the individual characters in the right order, and once you’ve completed a syllable block, the keyboard will automatically move onto the next word. This makes life a lot easier when typing in Korean!
Tips For Learning How To Type In Korean
If you’re beginning to learn to type in Korean, it can be easier to start with Korean keyboard websites or with your phone. This is because both methods use Korean keyboard layouts with Hanguel on the keys.
If you have a laptop or computer with an English keyboard, it can be a little trickier to get the hang of typing in Korean.
Of course, as I already mentioned, you can get Korean keyboard stickers or covers to make typing in Korean easier using a laptop or computer. You could also invest in buying a Korean keyboard.
No matter what option you choose, the best way to get familiar with the Korean keyboard is to practice! Being able to type in Korean will open up your language learning journey to loads of new information.
You’ll be able to message Korean friends, look up words in the dictionary, and you’ll get plenty of practice in forming Korean words correctly.
A great way to get down the basics is just to open a text app (Word or Notes) and just start practicing typing out some Korean words that you know.
Once you’ve got the hang of it, there are endless possibilities waiting for you! So that’s it! You’ve taken the first step on the journey to becoming a master of typing in Korean.