Kanvas, a photo-editing app that lets users add text, stickers, drawings and music to images as well as stitch together photos, GIFs and videos, is now bringing its set of creative tools to a new application for iOS users: Kanvas Keyboard. As you may guess by its name, the new app is an iOS 8-compatible keyboard app that lets you quickly add text to your photos or colored backgrounds, draw on photos, send GIFs and more, all while texting via SMS or iMessage.
Essentially, Kanvas Keyboard offers much of the functionality of the company’s flagship application, but now lets you build your creations more easily as they’re just a tap away from within the iOS 8 keyboard user interface.
Today, there are a number of popular keyboard apps on the market from complete replacements of Apple’s stock keyboard like Swype and SwiftKey, for example, to those designed for sharing GIFs, like PopKey and Riffsy. Kanvas Keyboard competes more directly with the latter, as it’s meant to offer users a different way to communicate beyond just typing out text.
Its GIF section lets you perform searches for GIFs by keyword, view GIFs by category, or you can pull from recently trending GIFs. You can choose from thousands of animated GIFs available, or you can make your own creation by drawing or writing on your photos with one or more of Kanvas’s 7 different paintbrushes, a variety of fonts, and more. Non-GIF stickers are available as well, but what’s really handy is that Kanvas also offers a “normal” keyboard for typing out text. That’s actually been a problem with using these newer GIF keyboards – when you need to revert to a text-based conversation, you often have a lot of switching around to do.
The keyboard app comes with a container app where users earn coins through keyboard usage that lets them unlock additional content from a number of artists. And existing Kanvas users can use their coins from Kanvas to redeem packs on the keyboard and vice versa.
The Kanvas Keyboard app is a free download on iTunes.
Kanvas Labs also just launched its flagship application on Android. According to founder and CEO Vic Singh the main Kanvas app today has over 500,000 users and is growing at 100,000 users per month.
The company, which grew out of a pivot from a photo-sharing app called Tracks, raised another million in seed funding in the beginning of the year to move forward with its new company.