I assume that the SoC in these devices doesn’t have the horsepower/resources to waste on T9 style predictive typing.
A feature that would be really useful on these phones would be to have 10 or so user predefined messages that can be chosen from a drop down when creating a text message. It would save a lot of wear and tear on the keypad and would allow quick sending of things the user sends all the time like:
Meet me at xxx
Be there soon
Will e-mail you later