How to Copy and Paste on Android

​Elizabeth Fernandez / Getty Images

Android supports cut/copy/paste just like traditional computers, but in order to access these features, you have to go about it differently than you're used to.

Copy and Paste General Text

If you want to copy a word, sentence, paragraph or other chunk of text from a webpage, message or other source follow these steps.

  1. Tap on a word in the section you want to copy, holding your finger on the word for a moment. The word will be highlighted with two small teardrop-shaped handles on either side and a popup menu will appear. 
  2. Tap and hold one or both handles, dragging them to highlight and select the text you wish to copy. 
  3. Tap Copy in the popup menu. 
  4. Go to the application where you want to paste the copied text, such as your messenger or email app. Open the email, message or window you wish to use. 
  5. Tap and hold the text field where you want to paste the text
  6. Tap Paste on the popup menu that appears to paste the text. 

Copy and Paste a Website Link

Copying the address of a website is similar to copying basic text on an Android device. 

  1. Navigate to the website you want a link for in your browser.
  2. Tap and hold the web address in the address bar until a popup menu appears.
  3. Tap Copy.  
  4. Go to the application where you want to paste the copied link, such as your messenger or email app. Open the email, message or window you wish to use. 
  5. Tap and hold the text field where you want to paste the link
  6. Tap Paste on the popup menu that appears and paste the link.

Copy and Paste Special Characters

In order to copy and paste a symbol or other special character, it must be text-based. If it is an image, you will not be able to copy and paste it. 

CopyPasteCharacter.com is a useful resource for virtually any symbol or special character you might need. You can copy and paste them using the same method as you would use to copy and paste text. 

Cut and Paste on Android

The Cut option will only appear in the popup menu if you select text you are typing or editing, such as in an email or message. To cut text, follow these steps.

  1. Tap on a word in the section you want to cut, holding your finger on the word for a moment. The word will be highlighted with two small teardrop-shaped handles on either side and a popup menu will appear. 
  2. Tap and hold one or both handles, dragging them to highlight and select the text you wish to cut. 
  3. Tap Cut in the popup menu. 
  4. Navigate to where you want to paste the cut text. 
  5. Tap and hold the text field where you want to paste the text
  6. Tap Paste on the popup menu to paste the text.

Why Am I Unable to Copy?

Note that not all apps support copying and pasting text. If the app has a web-based version, such as Facebook or Twitter, try accessing it through your mobile browser instead.