Three way to create customized input control for UITextField

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Recently I need to create some customized textfield to input numbers and text on iPad. I don’t like the default keyboard on iPad because it takes too much of the screen, and in some cases covers up the input field.

1) From iphonedevsdk: What is proper way to do UITextField text change call back? (this also mentioned by stackoverflow)

[textField addTarget:self action:@selector(textFieldDidChange:) forControlEvents:UIControlEventTouchDown];

The downside of this approach is: it takes a press (a tap and hold) to trigger the event.

2) InputView
Create a customized view such as this one at raywenderlich, then set the inputView of textfield. I used this approach to create a number pad that used to only input numbers. There is some limit to this approach as well: the location of customized input view is usually fixed, and in my case (a double picker) for text field (table cell), that is not ideal. I was using pop over controller (again raywenderlich), combined with approach 1, the user does not like the “hold”. After I changed to approach 2, the user does not like the fixed location of input view. So I did more research, and eventually I found the following approach that works for me.

One tip: make sure lock the input view, otherwise it will mess up things after iPad rotation.
– (BOOL)shouldAutorotateToInterfaceOrientation:(UIInterfaceOrientation)interfaceOrientation
return NO;

3) self delegate, UITextFieldDelegate

Make sure do this in viewDidLoad (or other place initialize the text field):
myTextField.delegate = self;

This way I could have both “single tap” and the pop over controller.

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