Windows Phone has been playing catch up to Android and iOS since it was first released. Basic services we took for granted on other platforms were initially missing, but Microsoft has taken a fairly significant step forward with the release of Windows Phone 8.1.
One specific example is text entry. Keyboards like Swype, SwiftKey, and Google's stock keyboard have set the standard for fast touchscreen typing, utilizing features like gesture based typing and long pressing for special characters.
Windows Phone's keyboard also now includes "swiping" typing, but there are a couple gestures included which can help improve entry speed for things like special characters.
At first glance the WP8.1 keyboard resembles the iOS keyboard, where users have to toggle between special characters and letters. However if you tap and hold on the special character toggle switch, then slide on the screen, when you release the slide after selecting a character, the keyboard will automatically return to QWERTY.
Hit the related video to see this tip in action and for more tricks including punctuation selection and cursor control!