Problem with iPhone on-screen keyboard

iOS and iPadOS

I have an iPhone 5S running the latest version of iOS and I am a VoiceOver user. I regularly use a Bluetooth keyboard for typing as it is quicker, especially for composing long pieces of text. However, occasionally I like to use the normal on-screen keyboard, especially for sending short messages and if I do not have my Bluetooth keyboard with me.
However, recently I have been noticing problems in that when I want to type something using the on-screen keyboard, it is not visible despite having no Bluetooth keyboard connected. I am finding that the only way to make the on-screen keyboard visible is to turn my Bluetooth keyboard on and activate the 'keyboard visible' button. This means that at the moment, the only way I can type when I don't have access to a Bluetooth keyboard is through Siri but I obviously cannot use that for entering passwords and not all apps have Siri integration. I have noticed this on-screen keyboard problem when using various apps including Messages, Facebook Messenger, Amazon and Twitterrific. Does anybody know how I could resolve this problem? I have explored the options in the Keyboard settings and there is nothing there and even restarting my phone does not seem to solve it.
Thank you for your help!



Submitted by MsHollyWeezy on Sunday, February 19, 2017

Hi. Try turning the keyboard off with the switch it has and see if that helps.

Submitted by Brian Tew on Sunday, February 19, 2017

You could add braille screen input to your rotor if you can do braille.
or use dictation maybe?
I thought maybe siri would make the keyboard unhide, but she is not co-operating so far.

Submitted by WriterGirl on Sunday, February 19, 2017

I have had this issue as well, and the only solution I've found is to toggle my bluetooth off from the control center whenever I'm away from my keyboard and need to type. As a previous commenter said, I use braille screen input for the majority of my text entry now, so that is an option as well.

Submitted by Alli on Sunday, February 19, 2017

Hi AliceP104,
Yes, please try turning off Bluetooth and restart iPhone to see if it works.
I also experienced similar issues with some Bluetooth enabled devices in the past but just like WriterGirl, I did disconnect the devices when not in use or just restarted my phone.
Just ignore any location accuracy messages turning Bluetooth off brings and go ahead and see.
Good luck!!!!

Submitted by AliceP104 on Sunday, February 19, 2017

Thank you to everyone who has replied!
I use dictation regularly but because my keyboard is not appearing, I cannot activate the Dictate button. Also, I tried turning off Bluetooth and restarting my phone but that has not worked either.
I also did the following to see when the problem occurs: I went into a text field in the Messages app, turned on my Bluetooth keyboard and made the on-screen keyboard visible, turned off my Bluetooth keyboard and the on-screen keyboard was still visible, exited the app via the app switcher and re-opened it and the keyboard was still visible. However, I then locked my iPhone and unlocked it again and the keyboard had disappeared again. Essentially, I can make the keyboard visible using my Bluetooth keyboard but as soon as I lock and unlock my iPhone the problem persists again regardless of whether a Bluetooth keyboard is connected or not.
I'd also like to point out that whenever I am not using my Bluetooth keyboard, I turn it off using its switch on the back to guarantee that I will not connect to it by accident. Furthermore, I am only experiencing this problem with the iPhone's on-screen QWERTY keyboard and other keyboards that fall into that category such as the Emoji keyboard; I am not experiencing this problem with the on-screen keypad which is used to enter your passcode and any phone numbers.
Thank you once again,

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Sunday, February 19, 2017

This is a bug that right now cannot be resolved except to turn off bluetooth completely.

Good luck.

Submitted by david s on Monday, February 20, 2017


That’s an odd one. Here is what I would try.

Unpair the BT keyboard. Restart your device. Find a text field once your device has restarted. Single finger double tap the field and see if the keyboard comes up.

I know you mentioned you turned off the keyboard and turned off BT but try unpairing it.

HTH and good luck.