Image: Grammarly

Developers who offer text writing and editing in their apps can enhance that feature with grammar checking via a new Software Developers Kit from Grammarly. As part of the Grammarly for Developers product, Grammarly’s Text Editor SDK is designed to make it easier to offer real-time writing assistance in text-based software. The idea is to help developers include a grammar checker using just a few lines of code via the SDK rather than having to create all the necessary code from scratch.

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The SDK provides a comprehensive set of English writing suggestions with underlines and suggestion cards, personal dictionaries and the ability to change and fix text. The SDK offers feedback and suggestions for correctness (grammar and writing mechanics), clarity (conciseness and readability), engagement (vocabulary and variety) and delivery (formality, politeness and confidence).

Designed only for the web and the desktop, the SDK provides English-language writing assistance on any web-based application running in a browser or in Electron or Chromium-based desktop apps. For this beta launch, the company said it’s supporting only Windows and macOS and not mobile platforms like Android or iOS.

What specific types of programs could tap into the new Grammarly SDK?

“First are marketplace platforms—job boards, freelancer marketplaces, retail marketplaces, etc.—where improving the quality of communication between buyers and sellers can increase the likelihood of a successful transaction,” said Rob Brazier, head of Grammarly for Developers.

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“Next are business communications and content creation tools, like support ticketing systems, marketing tools, email clients, customer service chat products, and CMS systems,” Brazier continued. “These applications are where high-stakes business communications are drafted, and it’s important for users to look professional and consistent.”

Education apps could also benefit from grammar checking, according to Brazier. In this regard, Grammarly can help students learn and improve their English skills.

The grammar checking available through the SDK works by talking with Grammarly’s cloud-based services. The SDK manages all the communications between the app and the cloud.

A product like Grammarly does trigger concerns about privacy and security. By using the grammar checker, users are essentially giving the company access to their text and data. The cloud-based communication also raises the question of who can see the data and whether it’s secure from prying eyes.

“Security is our first and most important product feature,” Brazier said. “We do not and will not sell or rent user data.”

Brazier also pointed to Grammarly as a trusted company that employs user-first security and privacy practices. As some examples, the product checks only the text the user wants it to check and it doesn’t run in sensitive or read-only fields. Further, users can view all data associated with their accounts.

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Grammarly also is transparent about its security practices and holds enterprise-grade compliances and certifications, Brazier added. In this area, all data is encrypted, the security protects users against unauthorized access, and the company regularly obtains security evaluations from third parties.

Grammarly is already available for several different platforms. The product for Windows and macOS comes in free, premium, and business plans. Add-ons are accessible for Microsoft Office as well as for Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge and Safari. Grammarly also comes as a third-party keyboard for iOS and Android. With any version, you can correct grammar and spelling errors on the fly and run a check on an entire message, document or other piece of text.

Grammarly isn’t alone in offering grammar checking. Other applications that perform this function include ProWritingAid, Hemingway, WhiteSmoke, Readable, Ginger and LanguageTool. Most of these apps also come in different versions and can check your grammar on the fly or after you’re finished writing.

The Grammarly Text Editor SDK is available to developers at no cost through a closed beta. Anyone interested can apply for the beta at the Grammarly for Developers website. The beta offers several benefits, including an API with access to Grammarly services and UI building blocks, developer guides and API documentation, sample applications with source code, and a quick-start tutorial.