Text Expansion with Alfred

I’ve had my MacBook Air for over five years now and by and large it is still performing pretty well. Certainly better after that time than any Windows machines I’ve had in the past would have done.

Just recently, though, I’d been having a performance problem which led me to do a root and branch check of my machine (turned out it was the Sophos Home Virus scanner). As part of this I stumbled upon the fact that Alfred can do text expansion and this left me to wonder whether it was worth having two programs sat in the background waiting to do the same thing.

For years now I have used TextExpander for my text expansion needs and found it indispensable using it many times each day. But like so many others the company behind the program have moved to a subscription model and I am trying to wean myself off having lots of little subscriptions (I think that might be a post for another day). It’s not that I don’t value the program, I absolutely do, but I just am not a power user and so didn’t feel I’d be getting the value from the subscription.

That Alfred can do text expansion was, as I said, a bit of a surprise. I know it is very capable and again I use it all day every day but I did wonder what load was being added to my machine having two programs just sitting there looking at my keyboard input waiting for my to type my snippet keyword.

I have a reasonable number of snippets and didn’t relish entering them all again. Fortunately someone has written a routine to convert TextExpander snippets to Alfred format so testing it out was easy.

And how does it compare? I can safely say that I haven’t noticed any difference at all. So that was goodbye TextExpander. If you have both I would highly recommend taking a look and see if the switch might work for you too.

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