Any way to get a tab character out of a Google Keyboard on Android?

Checking through the various character sets etc. find nothing.

Searching the Internet finds nothing relevant.

The goal is to indent bullets in Google Keep to make sub-bullets.

  • I can't find a Tab character on Google keyboard. Read somewhere that it's available on Swiftkey keyboard by double pressing Space key
    – NVZ
    Jan 30 '16 at 15:26
  • Thank you for the prompt responses. I saw those before posting but nothing in them applies to using Google Keyboard on Android V6 on an HTC1M8
    – NetScr1be
    Jan 30 '16 at 15:47

Try Keyboard for Excel, by Microsoft, in the Google Play store. Has tab, and the proper orientation for data entry on the numeric keypad, among other things...

Find it here:


  • Hacker's Keyboard is available, too... Aug 7 '19 at 11:48

You can insert a tab as follows:

  1. Copy from somewhere (I used Simplenote) a tab.
  2. Go to Parameters → Dictionaries → Personal dictionaries from the Google Keyboard.
  3. Choose your language and click on "add".
  4. Paste the tab in the first field and define some shortcut.

Now if you type your shortcut, Gboard will propose the tab in the auto-correction bar. I tried with Simplenote and Keep and checked on my computer (using both the desktop and web apps) that the tab has been correctly inserted.

This is similar to what suggested in a previous answer (but now it works).


Short answer

I could not find a Tab key native within the Google Keyboard on Android Phone.

I suggest two workarounds

Your question relates to Google Keep, but these could be applied to other apps.

1] Open Google Keep on your PC. Pressing the Tab key is not helpful. However, the ASCII HT code can be entered using Alt+09. Resume work on your Android phone and select and copy the blank tab space entered in your note. Paste where needed.

2] The personal dictionary within Google Keyboard allows addition of words and shortcuts. Unfortunately, pasting the Tab code as a word and adding a shortcut HT did not successfully create a working method. However, this autocorrect type function was successful using an alternative product Texpand Pro.

Interestingly, the tab code showed only as a single space when viewed in Google Keep on my Android phone; but the same note showed as a complete tab when viewed on my PC. The tab code shows as expected when entered into a Google Doc on Android phone.

Note: Within Google Keep, you can create nested dot points: * Primary bullet point hierarchy + secondary bullet [double space indent] - tertiary bullet - another tertiary bullet Reference: https://plus.google.com/+MichaelMichelmore-Fegg/posts/QirAmXdRDFv

Note: Texpand from https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.isaiasmatewos.texpand --- there are links to a paid Pro version too.

  • Where do we arrow or bullet icons? Can't post screenshot but there are neither in Android Keep
    – NetScr1be
    Jul 21 '17 at 20:14

If you are trying to tab right or left for bullets, for example, you can use the icons with right and left arrows, respectively, at the top of the screen (just to the right off the bullet icon.)


This answer may not satisfy yours but it may satisfy others looking for a way to add a tab character in a Google Docs script.

If you are trying to add a tab via script, the tab character is the escape character \t

If you were using the Google scripting API, it might go something like this:

var doc = DocumentApp.getActiveDocument();
var doc_body = doc.getBody();
var doc_paragraphs = doc_body.getParagraphs();

(Identify the paragraph number requiring a tab by using a for-loop and a Logger.log call-out.) Once you've found the right paragraph, append it with a tab character.

doc_paragraphs[<the paragraph number you identified>].appendParagraph("\t");

That'll add a tab to the end of that paragraph.


NextApp's Technical Keyboard (available on Google Play) may do what you want.

  • Hello. Can you add a screenshot?
    – Firelord
    Jul 18 at 12:19

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