London: We`ve all done that - hurriedly typing out a text message that doesn`t quite turn out as we`d hoped. But for those who use the built-in dictionary on their mobile phones, embarrassing miscommunication can jump to a whole new level.
Take the mother who wanted to treat her children by making them visit Santa Claus one Christmas. She didn`t sound so loving when she texted a friend: "Taking the kids to see Satan."
Modern mobile phones come with a built-in dictionary which enables them to predict what word a user wants from only a few key presses, a daily reported.
Each key represents three letters. It differs from the older system in which users had
to hit keys several times per letter, for example pressing the 5 key three times for the letter L.
For this reason, phones can often predict a completely random word - often with hilarious results.
For example, it is easy to end up asking a friend out for a quick riot (pint) or telling them about being stuck in a Steve (queue).
More worrying is a 2009 study that found predictive text messaging changes the way children`s brain works and make them more likely to make mistakes.
Scientists said the system trains young people to be fast but inaccurate. They claim this makes them prone to impulsive and thoughtless behaviour in everyday life.
Previous research has shown that predictive texting makes people sloppy when it comes to spelling, with many flummoxed by words such as questionnaire, accommodate and definitely.
But for most phone users, predictive texting is a source of convenience, and considerable amusement.