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September 5, 2012

Seven tips for maximizing iPad efficiency

At the HSMAI MEET National event in Washington, D.C., Mike Song of GetControl.net shared several tips for maximizing efficiency on iPads. (Some apply to iPhones and iPod touch devices as well.) “Tech management is as important as time management,” he said. “They can even go hand-in-hand.”

1. Zip to the top. The clock at the top of an iPad is a quick way to bring a user back up to the top of whatever page (or email) is being read. Just tap it and you’ll scroll up quickly.

2. Save typing time, especially if you’re not using a Bluetooth-connected keyboard (which you should be—typing on a real keyboard is much easier than a virtual one). Hit the space bar twice to automatically insert a period and capitalize the next word, saving the hassle of finding the period on the secondary keyboard screen and then hitting the shift button.  To add an accent over a letter, hold down the letter until a menu of available accents appears over it. Also, typing apostrophes is a waste of time—auto correct, as evil as it sometimes is, will add them for you. If there is a lengthy word or phrase that you type often (perhaps your business’ name), create a shortcut. Go to the General button from the home page and scroll down to “Keyboard.” Find the Shortcuts option and add the longer word or phrase on top and the shorter word—the “trigger” —on the bottom.

3. Manage all open apps easily. Hit the home button twice to bring up a menu of every app you’re using (great for copying material from an email into a document, for example). To quickly zip from one app to another, make your hand into a claw and sweep across the screen. All the apps will sweep by until you find the one you want.

4. Organize your home screen. Separate apps into different categories that apply to different parts of your life. Folders make this easy: Tap an app and hold until all apps wiggle, then drag one app onto another to create a new folder. Move apps that might be distracting onto different screens so you won’t see them until you want to. 

5. Also, if there are websites you visit regularly, turn them into apps that can be easily launched from your home page. Launch the browser and look for the little rectangle with an arrow by the address bar. Click that and select “Add to Home Screen.” For other popular sites, activate the bookmark browser (and shorten the names when adding them to maximize space). 

6. Use auto-fill for forms. Create your own entry in the iPad’s contact list with all of your information. Go to settings, then to Safari, then to Auto-fill. Make sure “Use contact info” is on, and then select your contact entry.

7. To save battery life, turn on airplane mode when you don’t need Wi-Fi. Also, turn off Bluetooth if you’re not actively using a peripheral product. Monitor battery life with “Battery percentage” in the “General” tab.  Settings – general – scroll to keyboard. 

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About the Author: Jena Tesse Fox

Jena Tesse Fox





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