These "Tips & Tricks" work for
the iPad Air or Mini with iOS7.

They may (or may not) work with other Apple products.
The icons will no doubt be different!  

I add more bumpf as I learn ... so the ordering may seem weird.

Built-in Apps
Menu ... of iPad Tips & Tricks
Signature Emojis Making folders See open apps Delete apps
Type all caps A picture of the screen Copy, Paste, Share Search for an app Typing with thumbs
Triple-click Home Speech Recognition Batteries the iPad Dock Keyboard short cuts
Siri: voice recognition Facetime Messages Gestures Air Drop
iCloud Backup Notifications Mail Auto stuff HDR photos
Location Services Read webpages offline Kindle stuff Favourite Apps iOS 8.0.2
RAVPower File Hub Apple TV
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Settings Mail, Contacts, Calendars Signature

Instead of your email ending with "Sent from my iPad" ... change it!

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Settings General International Keyboards Add New keyboard Emoji

Get a bunch of smileys (called "Emojis") for your message.

Then you get a "special" keyboard like this:

If you press the "globe" you can pick from a jillion emoticons!!

Press the "globe" again to get back to the standard keyboard.

It'll make your emails & messages look slick!

Folders on the Home Screen
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Drag one icon on top of another and they both go into a newly created folder.
Then you can slide other apps into that folder.

Open apps
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Double click the Home key to see all the recently opened apps.
Swipe side to side to see them all.
Slide an app up to close the app.

Deleting stuff
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Press on an icon on the Home screen until all the icons "wobble".
Click on the appropriate to delete the app from your iPad.
Click the Home key to stop the wobbling.
You can't delete the iPad built-in apps.

All caps
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To type in all capitals, double-click the upper case button.

Take a screenshot
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To take a picture of the screen, simultaneously
hold down the Home button and the Sleep/Wake button.

The picture will go into your Photo collection.
That's how I got the pictures for this web page.

Note: You can also use the AssistiveTouch button.

Copy, Paste & Share
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There's a magic button called the "Share Button" which appears from time to time:

Whenever it appears, you can tap it and get a menu that depends upon what's currently on the screen:

See? One of the menu items is "Copy".

To save a photo you received in a "message", tap the photo to enlarge it
then tap again on the screen to get the "Share" button:

You can also press some text or an empty space and get a menu of choices:

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On the Home screen, slide your finger down to search.
Start well below the top of the screen ... else you'll get somethin' else!

Type with both thumbs
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If you like to type with both thumbs, you can drag the keyboard apart:

Triple clicking the Home button
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You have choices as to what triple-clicking the Home key does:
Settings General Accessibility Accessibility Shortcut

You might like reading white text on black background, eh? Then choose Invert Colors.

Assistive Touch button
If you choose AssistiveTouch you'll get a small button (which you can relocate where you like, on the screen).
Clicking the button will bring up a sequence of windows ...

Speech Recognition
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There is a tiny microphone icon on the keyboard.
If you click it (and you're connected to the Internet!)
then you can speak to the iPad and click
and your words appear as text on the screen.

You need the Internet 'cause the words you speak get sent to a magic "Apple" place
where they (hopefully) recognize the words and send back text.

Things you can say:
  • Period: You get a period and a space.
  • Question Mark: You get a ? and a space.
  • New Paragraph: You get a new paragraph.
  • Comma or Colon or Quote and Unquote and even Upside Down Question Mark.

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Lithium-Polymer batteries (LiPo = a modified Lithium-Ion) are 4.2 volts, fully charged.
The maximum battery level can drop to 80% after (about) 500 charge-discharge cycles.**
They may be charged at any time ... no need to wait until they are discharged.
Apple recommends that you completely discharge
the battery at least once a month
... down to (maybe) 10%.

Note: A complete discharge will also recalibrate the battery level meter.

It may be a bad idea to discharge to below 5%.
Some suggest that a Lithium-Polymer battery may not recover from too deep a discharge.

Remove any case while charging ... for ventilation.
Charging may take four hours. They should not be overcharged!
Special LiPo chargers reduce the charging current when the voltage reaches 4.2 volts.

The newer iPads have a battery capacity of over 11,000 milliamp hours (mAh):
An 11,000 mAh battery will provide 1100 milliamps for 10 hours (because 1100 x 10 = 11,000).

** One "cycle" means discharging 100%, then recharging back to 100%.
That's not what we do, eh? Roughly speaking, a "cycle" means something like this:
We discharge by 30% (down to the 70% level), then recharge, then discharge another 40%, then recharge, then discharge 30%.
That'd be one cycle (not three cycles), because 30% + 40% + 30% = 100%.

Conserving battery power:
  • Turn off WiFi when you don't need it.
  • Use auto-lock to turn off the display after a few minutes of inactivity.
  • Dim the screen at night.
  • Turn off location services.
  • Close apps that you aren't using.

iPad Dock
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The "Dock" at the bottom of the Home screen (usually) has four apps.
You can have up to six. Just press an app until you get the "wobble".
Then slide the app to the Dock.

Keyboard Shortcuts
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  • Double-click the space bar at the end of a sentence and get a period and a space
    ... and the next letter will be upper case.
  • Hold down the ? key and get a double quote "
  • Hold down a letter key and get special accents.
  • You can hold down the .?123 key, get the number keyboard,
    then slide your finger to the number you want.
    Raise your finger and the keyboard reverts to the original keyboard.
  • Type Im and dont and get I'm and don't. **
  • Invent a shortcut, like: You type mmm and the iPad types Mamma mia!

** You can disable some "shortcuts": see Auto Stuff

Siri: voice recognition
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Hold down the Home key and Siri asks what you want.
Touch the question mark at the bottom to see what you can ask:
  • Open Camera
  • Check email
  • New email to ...
  • Find the nearest gas station
  • Turn on WiFi
  • Turn up/down brightness
  • Search Wikipedia for ...
  • Tell me about ...

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To enable video calls:
(turn it on)

If you want to show the caller the view out your window, switch cameras.

Sending iMessages
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You can send messages (over a WiFi connection)
with text, pictures, videos, internet links
to one or many people ... for free.
And you can "speak" your message.
(See Speech recognition.)

For messages: Click the icon on Home screen
to send messages to any of your "Contacts".
You can add additional recipients with the + icon.
This'll give you "group messaging" where everybody shares the messages.

There is a tiny camera icon.
If you click it you can take a picture or video and send it
... or send an existing photo from your album(s).


Gestures & Swipes
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Swipe your finger DOWN from the top edge and get the Notification Center.

Swipe your finger UP from the bottom and get the Control Center.
To see all open Apps, swipe up with five fingers
This is like double-clicking the Home button. ( See App List )

Be sure that Multitasking Gestures is ON:

Air Drop
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In the Control Center
Gestures) there's an "AirDrop" button:

You can send stuff
(photos, videos, URLs, documents etc.) to any "nearby" iPad (with iOS7 and less than 30 ft. away).
NOTE: The other apple device must have AirDrop capability ... such as
Your iPad and that other device must both have Bluetooth/WiFi ON.
Further, the application your are using must have a "Share Button":
I reckon that the iPad looks around (using Bluetooth) to see what nearby Bluetooth devices are on your Contacts list.
Then it sends the data to the device(s) you select via a device-to-device WiFi connection (not the Internet).
(That's a WLAN: a Wireless Local Area Network.)

For example: Sending a Walmart flyer (that I found on the Internet) to my wife's iPad.
I had the flyer on my iPad screen then I clicked the "Share Button":

iCloud Backup
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When you buy an iPad and sign up for iCloud and iTunes,
you get 5 GB of free storage.
You can backup your iPad stuff ... things like:
  • Purchase history for music, movies, TV shows, apps, and books
  • Photos and videos in your Camera Roll
  • Device settings
  • App data
  • Home screen and app organization
  • iMessage, text (SMS), and MMS messages
  • Ringtones
  • Visual Voicemail

To enable iCloud Backup, do this:
Settings iCloud Storage & Backup

iPad stores (in your iCloud space), your photos, info about your apps, messages, ringtones, etc. etc.

It does this "backup" when your iPad is sleeping...after you press the sleep button (so you're not disturbed if you're playing with your iPad)
and if you're plugged in
(so the battery doesn't die while the iCloud backup is taking place) and you're connected to WiFi (since the backup takes place via the Internet).

You can access iCloud info from your PC.
Go here:
The control panel you get will look something like this:

If you click on the link, you'll see your iPad stuff ... something like this:

Push Notifications
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Apps will (often) ask if they can provide "Push Notifications".
If you say "OK", the app may stick comments on your Lock Screen, make a sound, display a "badge", etc.
You can check your notification settings with the Settings icon.

Swipe your finger DOWN from the very top of the screen to see all your Notifications. (see Gestures.)

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When you click the Mail icon, you get a list of mailboxes.
You can click on one and delete an email by clicking on the "Edit" button.
Alas, deleted email only goes into another mailbox: Trash.
SettingsMail, contacts, calendarsAccount/ADVANCED/MailAdvanced
and Trash gets deleted after some time:

When you send a photo via email, you have the opportunity to change the size:

The menu you get looks like this:

My wife bought an iPad Air (iOS 7.1.2) and I bought an iPad Mini with Retina Display (iOS 7.1.2).
Her iPad shows the change-of-size "Images" button ... mine does NOT. That ain't fair!

After some fiddling I discover that size matters!.
I DO get the Images button when I try to email large photos ... say a megabyte or more (?)

Auto Stuff
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To turn On or Off things like Check Spelling and Auto-Correction ...
Settings General Keyboard

HDR photos
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When you tap the Camera Button you have the opportunity to take a photo in HDR mode.

HDR means High Dynamic Range and is a technique for (hopefully!) modifying the range of light intensities in a photo.

It might involve taking several photos at different exposure levels and superimposing them to create a single, more detailed photo.

For example, one could take several pictures with a varying shutter speeds (hence changing the "exposure") and superimposing them.

The iPad takes three photos and superimposes.
Needless to say, the object being photographed had better not move
else the superimposing would generate a blurry image.
Further, I reckon one would want HDR if there are very bright areas (hence washed out)
and very dark (hence little detail).

Okay, here's a picture I just took of an amethyst "rock concert" sitting on my desk:

Location Services
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If you're driving about the country your iPad can identify nearby Wi-Fi HotSpots.
It can use that information to guesstimate your iPad Location.

It works pretty well!
P.S. It don't work good if'n there aren't enough WiFi Hotspots nearby.

Reading web pages offline
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If you're browsing and see a web page you'd like to read later (when you're not on the Internet):
  1. Click the Share Button to get the share menu.
  2. Click Add to Reading List ... see the eyeglasses?
  3. On the bookmarks menu (when you're using the Safari web browser),
    click the eyeglasses icon to get the list of web pages you've added to your Reading List.
  4. The delete an item, swipe it to the left.

Kindle stuff
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By clicking on the App Store icon you can download thousands of Apps.

That's where you'll download the Kindle App ... using the URl:

When you fire up the App for the first time, you'll register with Amazon and get a Kindle email address :
It'll look like:

To put an ebook on your iPad from a PC (for example), mail the book to your Kindle email address.
The next time you open the Kindle App, it'll read the email, download the book and add it your the ebook collection.

Some of my Favourite (free) Apps
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Click on a picture for more info

Kindle Reader

Google Earth

Weather Network



Fongo phone


Google maps

Skype phone





Wi-Fi Finder








iOS 8.0.2
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After reading favourable iOS 8.0.2 reviews, I decided to update my Operating System two days after it was released.
I had to delete a dozen apps to make 7 GB available for the update.
It took almost two hours to download and install.
(My WiFi download speed is 10 Mbps.)
When it was finished, my iPad restarted and the software verified ... that took a while!
Then I was asked some questions concerning iCloud (password, settings) ... then the update ritual ended.
Most of the 7 GB was again available, so I could reinstall most apps.
What's neat are the extra "Camera" features, like Timer, Time Lapse and Panoramic.
Then, too, there are minor changes to "Photos"
...recently deleted images stick around for 30 days:

Panoramic photo Click to enlarge
Now there's the ability to add audio to
Messages. Just click the wee icon at the bottom ...

When you double-click the Home Button you see all the open Apps.
With OS8 you also see Recent Contacts.
Just click on a Contact (or an App) to go there.

You can now see what apps are using how much of the Battery with
Settings General Usage Battery Usage

There's a modified keyboard which suggests words

If your iPad is plugged into power (as in a car), you can talk to Siri by saying "Hey Siri"

The Spotlight Search will provide a variety of places to search.
Type something and it suggests things

You can send your Location in Messages.
Just click on Details to get your options.

When you use the "Safari" browser in Landscape Mode, you get your book marks on the left side.
To get rid of that list, just click:

the magic RAVPower gadget
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My 16 GB iPad runs out of memory in a hurry, so I tried one of them portable gadgets that provide additional memory and battery power, namely the RAVPower Gadget.

Also, I insert an SD memory card or flash drive, filled with videos, photos, whatever and it becomes a WiFi Hotspot which allows devices (like my iPad) to load files from that inserted memory ... after I install the free App: Airstor on the iPad. (That lets my iPad talk to the Gadget.)

Further, there's a 3000 mAh battery in the Gadget which allows me to charge some device (like my iPad).
            Don't tell nobuddy, but I bought
            a couple of these chargers, too  
            You never know, eh? (Cost? $6.88 each.)
For comparison, the iPad mini with retina display has a 4760 mAh battery
(that's 23.8 watt-hour) and the iPad Air has 6480 mAh (that's 32.4 watt-hour).
P.S. A typical 9 volt alkaline battery has about 500-600 mAh.
A heavy-duty 6 volt lantern battery might have 11,000 mAh.

It's nice to have an iPad with a 500 GB disk drive attached via RAVPower!
This RAVPower is an amazing gadget!!  

This is the ritual after I insert an SD memory card and a flash drive:
I press the Power Button on the Gadget and several lights flash

Look for and connect to the RAVPower gadget

Enter password "11111111" and see the SD card and flash drive.

Open SD card, see the photos ... and mail one.

Open the flash drive and see the videos ...

... and play one
  • Several of us will soon be taking a vacation that includes a looong plane flight.
  • We all have iPads and we will all be watching videos on my RAVPower
    ... including all the videos & photos taken on our vacation!!

For me, one of the most useful features is putting photos, videos, etc. from my iPad to a memory card or flash drive.
select My Device and Manage:

pick your files then Done then Upload:

decide where to put the files

I came back from a holiday with dozens of photos & videos and needed to put them all on my desktop (where I got me lots of software to manipulate the stuff). Guess how I got it all on the desktop?
Apple TV
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If you get an Apple TV box, you can have everything    
on your iPad screen show up on a TV with HDMI.
Just sweep up from the bottom of the iPad screen to get the Control Center (see
If your Apple TV is turned on and connected to your TV via HDMI cable, you'll see this:

Click AirPlay then Apple TV (which allows wireless communication between iPad and Apple TV).

"Mirroring" will display
your iPad screen on the TV.