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    iPhone Tips and Hints
    Topic posted March 7, 2013 by NineSunsBronze, tagged iPhone 
    9587 Views, 22 Comments
    iPhone Tips and Hints

    People show me their iPhone asking me how to do something, and I discover that they don't know even the basics ... like how to shut down programs they have running in the background to save battery life. As a matter of fact, they don't realize that they are running. I figured I'd start a thread to help some of those people out ... and also pass on more advanced finds for those who are beyond the basics. Here are some of the basic basics.

    1) Double click the "home" button (after you have unlocked the phone); that will show you all the programs you have running. The more you have open, the faster your battery will drain.

    2) While you have those programs that are running showing, hold your finger over one of the app icons. The icons will start to wiggle and will have a "minus" sign on the upper left corner. Hitting a minus sign will shut down the application.

    3) Tired of so many apps that you don't use cluttering your screen? Again, put your finger on the icon and wait till they start to wiggle, this time with an "X" in the upper left. Hit the X to get rid of icons you don't want. You can still get those programs back if you want them back, but if you aren't using them, it will leave you with a cleaner, less cluttered screen.

    Whether a new user, or seasoned user, please post some more hints to help new users, and old hands alike.


    • NineSuns

      iPHONE CAMERA TIPS (extra shutters and grid and HDR)

      Well, there are some viewers here, but no posters so I will add another tip. I was interested in taking better pictures with my iPhone camera. One hint that I didn't know, or had forgotten, was that my volume button will trip the shutter. That is much more convenient than trying to flick the "take picture" button on my touch screen.

      I was looking for some other hints and found that people had set aside their hi-end cameras and were using their iPhone cameras ... and were getting great results. One thing that has improved my photos a lot is changing the settings through the Option Menu. Turn on Grid and HDR. That gives you a grid on your screen. By holding your finger on the object you want to focus on, and the light to adjust to, you will get much clearer, pictures that are lit where you want them to be.

      That means that when the sky is bright late in the day, and it's darker where I am taking the picture, the light will adjust for where I am, not for the sky.

      I have taken much better photos since then. :)

    • NineSuns


      I am cross-posting this here; I had posted it under "Apps", but it's nice to have these all in one place.


      This is to do with taking a screen shot on your iPhone. Why would you want to do this?

      * to copy and send a text conversation to someone else. There are really funny ones if you search for "*** You Autocorrect Top 25".

      * To post something that you found to Facebook or other social media.

      * To save a picture someone else has posted on Facebook (Your friend/family posts a lovely wedding picture and you want to save it)

      * You want to save some information posted on a web page and can do so with a couple of snaps. Email or text them.

      * You're trying to help someone with their phone and you want to show them what they should be looking for

      * etc. etc, etc.

       * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

      Quote: "... hold down the Power button on your iPhone (top right side) and press the Home button (big button right under the screen) at the same time. The screen will "flash" and your screen shot will be in your picture folder. You're in business!!"

    • NineSuns


      Maps on your iPhone act like a GPS. 

      When I had an Aunt and Uncle visit who are avid garage sale enthusiasts, I was driving in unfamiliar parts of the city. My Aunt was navigating and our printed map, although not very old, didn't have a new street listed. Out comes my iPhone and the Map function. 

      We plugged in the location we were going to, used the "Directions" feature for the phone to identify our present location, and just followed one of the routes my iPhone identified. It was so fun to hear my Aunt, who was the passenger, express amazement as she watched as the "present location" dot moved as the car did ... so much so that she had forgotten her task of giving me directions!  

      So, it goes without saying that this is a task for a passenger since you need to look at the phone. If you are alone, you will have to memorize the route and pull over if you forget what the route is. 

    • Logan

      One of my favourite iPhone tips is enabling emoticons. The iPhone has hundreds of smileys and symbols that are hidden unless you know this little trick.


      Tap on Settings > General > International > Keyboards

      Tap on Add a new keyboard and choose Emoji.


      Once you have done this you will see a new icon on your keyboard.


      From here you can select all kinds of fun emoticons.

    • NineSuns

      READING QR (quick response) CODES USING YOUR PHONE

      I am adding another cross-post of mine from the "Apps" thread. Again, it will get lost in there so moving to here. If you haven't yet, check out Apps for more recommendations on the apps that people use and enjoy. Lots of good recommendations in there.


      I was slow on the uptake of an app to read QR (Quick Response) codes till I took the time to figure it out one day. I choose "Scan", an app for the iPhone, but there will be many more for the iPhone and other phones. You just use your camera's phone to scan the code with this app. And if you don't know what a QR code is, here's one ...

    • NineSuns


      Do you know how to search your iPhone? I mean, search everything ... contacts, appointments, email, documents, messages, etc. There's one handy place to do it. Unlock the phone and, from the home screen, swipe "Left to Right" until you come on a black screen that says "Search iPhone". That's all there is to it; you just type in what you are looking for and a number of options pop up. Select the one you want and you're good to go!

      This comes in handy when you are looking for ..

      • a contact's information instead of scrolling through contacts
      • an appointment you can't remember the time of
      • an app that you want to find (I can never find "What's On", a TV schedule app ... I just type TV into my search and What's on, the app comes up).
      • a doc with a specific subject
      • a specific email ... use who it was to, the subject, what it was about, a unique word in it, etc.

      And, if it's not on your iPhone, it gives you the option of searching the Web or Wikipedia. Kool!

      iphone_home_screen.jpg Swipe Left to Right on the Home Screen to get ..... iphone30_02.jpg

    • NineSuns


      I was hoping that others would add to this, but they must still be celebrating after the Easter extended weekend. :) Although there are few contributors, there are many readers so I will add some more to these. 

      When you are using your web browser to look up information (Safari on the iPhone)and come upon a pretty fansastic web page that you just have to share, there's a quick way of doing that. 

      Say your found a job that you think your friend may be interested in. On the bottom of the Safari screen is an icon with an arrow jumping out of a box. Click that and there are a number of options available to you. You can mail the link to her, send her the link by instant message, Tweet the link, add it to your Facebook page, and a few other options that you may like. It's so much easier than copying and pasting the link. 

    • NineSuns


      I have seen people send the same exact text message ("meet me by the box office") to a number of people by texting each one individually. That's not necessary ... you can text a number of people at the same time. 

      Hit the "New Message" icon (square with a pencil) in text messages and add your first recipient in the "To" box by starting to spell their name. A number of recipients will pop up, and you select the one you want. Then, start typing the next name ... again, select the one you want. You can keep adding names untill you have included everyone you want to send the message to. Note that if people reply, everyone in the list gets their message too, so everyone is in on the conversation. 

      Something to keep in mind though; if you want to reply to one of these messages sent TO you and have only the original sender read your reply, start a NEW text message with just that recipient in the "To" box. Then, only that person will see the text. 

      And, I have messed up on this next one .... I have not paid attention to who an old text is from (all the names don't show up due to space limitations) and have clicked thier name to send them a text. Turns out, I picked one that they had sent to multiple recipients, and EVERYBODY got my new text. Sooooo .... haste may lead to embarassment in some cases. ;) 

    • NineSuns


      Do you know you are able to use your iPhone as a modem or "Hotspot"?. That means that if your computer can't connect to the Internet through the cable modem, or you purchased your iPad without the 3G, or one of your kids has an iPod Touch that only works on wi-fi, you can use your iPhone to connect each of these. 

      Go to Settings>Personal Hotspot and turn it on. The iPhone will give you a password for the connecting device to use. Then follow the directions under the password to connect using Wi-fi, Bluetooth, or USB. 

      For whatever reason, when I went to do this, "Personal Hotspot" did not appear under "Settings" and I had to contact my provider to correct this. I use this most often when I am on a trip; I connect my iPad using my iPhone and am able to use it as if I have wi-fi in the car. 

      Another use ... my Aunt and Uncle are in a rural area and use a Data stick to connect to the Internet. We recently investigated the possibility of thier getting a high data usage cellular plan and using it to connect their computer. In their case, they have low usage. 

      Be sure to check your own cell plan first and ensure that you have enough data usuage available to you so you don't experience overages. 

    • NineSuns


      Have you ever wished you could keep the phone from flipping to Landscape view when you are in Portrait view, or from Portrait to Landscape. For me, it usually happens when I am reclining while using my phone (say, laying on a beach ... mmmmmmm), and have my phone overhead, or by my side. There is a way of locking the view in either Portrait or Landscape so it doesn't flip until you unlock it. Here's how ...

      Unlock the phone and put the phone in your preferred view - landscape or portrait. Double click the "Home" button (big one on the botton of the front of the iPhone), and swipe from left to right bringing you to the "Music" screen. On the far left of that screen is a button with a "refresh" or a "recycle" type arrowed circle. Tap that button to show a lock, or to unlock, click to remove the lock. Click the home button again to return to what you were doing.

      Simple .... and really useful!




    • Logan

      NineSuns - Do you have any new tips for iOS 7?

    • NineSuns

      SEARCHING YOUR iPHONE ... now in iOS 7

      Hi Logan, thanks for the prompt. I intended to add to these, but was enjoying my summer so much, I was away from the computer. Now with iOS 7, there are some new enhancements, and some old tools that are accessed in a different way. One of my favourite tools has been moved, but it's still there. 

       When my sister upgraded her iPhone to iOS7, I told her where to find Spotlight Search (the official name of this tool). She wasn't even aware that she could search her phone, so that is why I am starting with this tip. If you're not sure what I am talking about (searching your iPhone), refer to my April 22nd post ... "Searching your iPhone ... like Google". 

      To access Spotlight Search, on any of your home screens (the screens that have your programs icons on them), swipe down from half way down the screen to the bottom. Pop!!! There is your search box on the top of the screen, and the keyboard to start typing what you are looking for. Start typing to find an app, an email (using a unique word), a contact or part of a conversation in your text messages. Great tool!!! 

    • NineSuns


      Closing open programs/apps on an iPhone/iPad running iOS 7 is just slightly different than it used to be. To close apps in iOS 6, you had to double click the  home button to see open apps (big button on the bottom), tap and hold the app you wanted to close and then hit the X in the upper right. 

      In iOS 7, double click the home button which will cause all running apps to "pull back" into smaller squares where you can scroll (swipe right to left) to see each of the open apps. To open a program, just tap the small window and it will advance into a full screen. If you want to close the app, or several apps, just swipe each of the apps up and away by placing your finger on the app, and swipe toward the top of the screen. Swish; it's gone! 

    • NineSuns


      I have iMessage messages come to both my iPhone and iPad. The advantage to that is that I can switch to my iPad to use my wireless keyboard  when carrying on a long text conversation, and the conversation on both devices if I want to look back and find a part of a conversation. This all works really well, but when I upgraded to iOS 7, it became randomized whether the text came on my iPhone, iPad, or both. Yikes!!! People were missing texts from me because I had switched to my iPad from my iPhone, and so I was being rude? mysterious? aloof? a jerk? 

      So ... well, it took some time to realize that people were not getting my texts. I had to research the answer and here is one. This work for some and it worked for me. I powered off both of my iThings for at least 5 minutes and it started working again. 

      A proper shut-down (not sleep) involves holding down the power button (top of iPhone) until you see the message to "Slide to power off". Slide, the phone will shut down, and leave it shut down for the 5 minutes. 

      Hope it works for you! If not, the suggestion was to wait till Apple had a fix. :(



    • NineSuns



      I titled this as turning a ringing phone off during a meeting, but that could have just as easily said a class, a movie, church, near a sleeping baby, in an awkward moment, etc. Of course, you try to remember to turn off your phone, but sometimes, we forget, or the moment is unexpected. This has happened to me and to others around me as their phone rang .... and rang ... and rang while they frantically tried to jam the phone into a purse or a coat to deaden the noise. Most often, it was in class; nothing says "phone rookie" like a ringing phone and an owner who doesn't know how to make it stop.

      There are many ways to tackle this problem, but the fastest is to  hit the "Power" button (top edge, right side of iPhone), or slide the "Ringer/Mute" button on the upper left side toward the back. The call will continue to come in, and will kick over to your message service if you have one, but the whole process will proceed silently.

      Ahhhhhhh ........... silence .... and no more embarrassing, frantic jamming.