iPad still rules

Tags: Knowledge

Advent of Android-based devices might have toppled iPad as the most sold tablet but it’s still the most popular slate. Here are a few tips on using your iPad better

Even though the Apple iPad was toppled from the top spot in annual sales in 2013 by the collective might of Android tablets, it remains the single the most popular slate out there. With over 200 million iPads sold since its introduction in June 2010, the GodPad unquestionably dominates the tablet universe not just in numbers but also in usage. And that goes for India too. So it only makes sense that we pass along some nifty usage tips and tricks that will help you get the most out of an iPad running iOS 7.

Multi-touch glory

If you haven’t tried using the iPad’s multi-touch gestures, you’re missing some neat and very simple productivity shortcuts. Before you get started, go to Settings > General > Multitasking Gestures and ensure that this is switched on. Now if you swipe left or right on the screen with four fingers you will be able to switch between apps that are open. To minimise an onscreen app and return to the home screen, simply pinch four fingers together.

Likewise, if you swipe upwards with four fingers, you will be able to see what apps are currently open. To close these apps all you need to do is swipe up. And you can do this two-three apps at a time too. A one-finger swipe up from the bottom edge of the screen reveals oft-used settings like wifi, bluetooth, camera, and music controls etc.

No trespassing: restricted area

The iPad offers some excellent apps for children. Apart from being an engaging entertainment device for them, it can also become a very good education tool for them. Yet, granting kids unrestricted access to the machine is not a very good idea. Not only can they accidentally delete apps, mail and documents, they might also shoot off embarrassing mails full of gibberish to your clients, boss and colleagues. Go to Settings > General > Restrictions, enable it and tweak all the various setting inside as per your needs. See what you want kept open and what you want restricted by a pin number.

This will ensure that access to anything right from the internet, the camera, iTunes Store, installing/deleting apps etc., is totally dependant on the preset numeric passcode. You can block Facebook and Twitter app usage, prevent in-app purchases, filter out explicit content, and disallow changes to contacts, calendars, mail etc.

A second monitor

Did you know that you can easily use your iPad as a second monitor for your computer--be it a PC, a laptop or a Mac? And that to wirelessly. All you need is Air Display (http://is.gd/Qvd0Nw) and Splashtop XDisplay (www.splashtop.com/personal).

Hey, wait! Why would you want to do so in the first place. Quite a few reasons actually. It can help you increase your productivity with extra screen real estate, or mirror your Mac/Windows computer display on your iPad. For instance, you could use the iPad as a dedicated messaging window instead of popping in and out of programmes on your PC’s screen. You could also use the iPad across the room to watch content stored on your computer. This would often negate the requirement of converting videos and copying them to the iPad.

Privacy and finding your iPad

As with a phone, it is extremely vital that you have a login passcode for your iPad. Like a phone, an iPad too can be stolen or fall into the wrong hands should you misplace it. Your contact list could be misused. You could have personal, confidential and financial information in there. It could provide ready access to your email, Facebook, Twitter or other social networking sites. To safeguard your own privacy and that of your kith and kin, ensure set up a four digit passcode via Setting > Passcode right away.

In the event your iPad is lost or stolen you can make it easier to locate it using the built-in Find My iPad feature. You’ll find this in Settings > iCloud > Find My iPad. Now if your iPad goes missing, log into your iTunes iCloud account from any computer or phone and you’ll see its location. You can also tell your iPad to display a message telling the finder how to return it. Failing this, you can remote wipe the data on your iPad to prevent misuse. Further, the Activation Lock feature in Find My iPad will prevent anyone from re-activating your device without your permission. Now if you can’t use use your iPad, neither can the thief!

(The author is a freelance personal tech writer)

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