Hey all you iPhone users out there, read this!
Here are 10 awesome iPhone shortcuts that can come in handy and simplify your smartphone life.
1. Organize Apps Into Folders – Stop scrolling through pages and pages of apps on your iPhone. Instead, organize the apps into folders that are quick and easy to find. Simply hold your finger down on one of the apps until they are all shaking. Drag one app on top of another to put them in a folder together. For example, I did this to group my social media apps together, my health apps, my productivity apps, my financial apps, and so on.
2. Create Albums In Your Photos App – See the plus sign in the top left of the below picture? That is for creating albums in your photos app and keeping your pictures organized. Go to your Photos app, select Albums in the top left, and you’ll see the screen with the plus sign. From there, follow the prompts to add photos to your new album.
3. Take A Screenshot – All the pictures on this page were taken using this little trick. It’s so useful! If you want to take a screenshot of what you currently see on your iPhone, simply hold the Home button (round button below the screen) and push the Lock button (button on the top edge of the phone). Snap! The screenshot is taken and it ends up in your Photos app.
4. Save An Image From The Web – If you’re surfing the web using the Safari app and you come across a photo you want to save, hold your finger down on the image. A menu will appear with options, and one of them is to save it. Hit the Save Image button and it will appear in your Photos app.
5. Turn Off Auto Correct – Let’s avoid those funny, and sometimes awkward, text messages that have fallen into the hands of auto-correct. To turn this feature off, go to Settings, then General, then Keyboard. Lastly, slide the button next to Auto-Correction in to the off position.
6. Customize Alert Sounds – Also in Settings, you can customize your alert sounds so that you can decipher what kind of message is coming in without looking at your phone every time it makes a noise. Once in Settings, go to Sounds, and then customize the sound next to each alert option.
7. Turn Off Your iPhone – I didn’t know how to do this when I first got my iPhone, so this tip may sound really easy but is useful nonetheless. Press and hold the Lock button (button on the top edge of the phone) until an option comes up to power off. Do the same thing to power it on.
8. Search The Entire iPhone – Instead of scrolling to the right to the next page of apps, scroll to the left. A blank page will appear with a search bar at the top and the keyboard at the bottom. Type in what you’re looking for, and a search will be done of your entire iPhone.
9. Current Snapshot – Drag your finger from the center of the top of the screen in a downward motion. A page will appear with the current weather, appointments for the day, notifications from social media and game apps, the stock market ticker and any other “news” for you.
10. Create Keyboard Shortcuts – Want to streamline typing on your iPhone keyboard? Create shortcuts so that your phone will automatically expand “omw” to “on my way!” Go to Settings, then General, then Keyboard. Scroll down to Shortcuts and select Add New Shortcut… then follow the prompts from there.
You’ve been through the routine. You open your text app or your email app, type in the recipient’s name, write a message, select a single photo and send it. Then you repeat this several times until you’ve shared all the photos you wanted to share. Humph!
Come on, it’s 2013! You should be able to share several photos in the same message. But wait, you can!!
The following step-by-step instructions show you exactly how to do this with your iPhone.
- Go to the Photos app.
- Make sure it says Camera Roll at the top if that’s where the photos are that you want to send. To get to your other albums, hit the Albums button in the top left corner and select the appropriate album.
- Hit the Edit button in the top right corner.
- Select the photos you want to share by simply touching each one.
- Hit the Share button on the bottom.
- Choose how you are going to share the photos (i.e. email, text message, Facebook, etc.) and follow the prompts from there.
It’s important to note that you can share 5 photos at a time via email, and you can send more than 5 pictures via text message. I was able to send 10 photos at one time in a text message! Also, don’t forget you can share with multiple recipients at the same time as well.
This little trick is handy in so many ways. It simplifies the process of sending photos of your kids to your parents, sharing pictures on Facebook, or emailing pictures of your work to a potential client. Any way you use it, you are saving time, effort, and money. How lovely!
When things are simple, life is just easier. Simple steps = quicker execution which means better time management. Like when you have to write something down and then head off on a 15 minute scavenger hunt looking for a pen…and oh, yeah, paper, too.
Save yourself a few minutes – and the aggravation – and just use your voice and the handy dandy Voice Memos iPhone app. You’re likely to always have your phone with you, so no need to go searching…unless you have to dig through your purse to find it. We’ll talk about that later.
Anyhoo, with this app, you can record a note or reminder and even send it to yourself via e-mail. I use Voice Memos to record interesting stories I hear on the radio (for future blog posts) when I’m in the car…while I’m at a stop light, of course.
If I can’t record a story in real time, then I wait until I can record a reminder with the name of the program and topic. The app automatically adds a date and time stamp. Love that. I also love that it is a standard feature on the iPhone.
See, I told you it was simple. How do you use this app?
I got a nice surprise a few days ago after I updated my iPhone software (iOS 4.0.2). While deleting apps and moving a few of them around on the phone, I discovered that I could store apps together. As I dragged one app close to another, a mini window (folder) opened up with a pre-suggested label. I kept most of those labels and created a few of my own. You can put any app in any folder and name it whatever you want.
. . Folders are easy to access. Just tap the one you want and you’ll see all the apps that reside in that category. Tap the folder again or press the home button to close it. Don’t worry – if you decide you want to move an app to a different folder, just drag and drop it in a new location.
Life before folders
Before folders, I had five pages of apps arranged in categories. Now, I have two pages of apps spread across seventeen folders. I know that sounds like a lot, but three of them belong to my husband. Yes, he has apps on MY phone…but his folders are on page two. J
So, now I spend less time flipping between pages looking for what I want. All the apps I need are on one page and I just look for the host category. Since this is a new system, it can take me a couple extra seconds to find what I want. After a few more weeks, this will no longer be a factor.
Folders force you to be picky
A maximum of 12 apps can fit in a folder so you will need to be choosy about the apps you want to keep. Of course, a work around would be to create two similar or connected folders (e.g., News I and News II). You also need to be picky about what you name your folders, so keep it simple and make sure it’s something that you can easily recall. You also have the option of keeping the suggested labels. You’ll notice these are the same labels used in the App Store.
If you need to access your favorite or most used app, you don’t have to put it in a folder. Keep it on the first page so you can find it quickly. For me, that’s my calendar. I open it several times a day and I don’t want an extra step to get in my way.
If you haven’t tried iPhone folders yet, give it a shot (for at least 21 consecutive days) and let me know how it works for you.
One of the main complaints I get from my clients about technology is that it’s too complicated. This can be true in some cases, but for me yesterday, it couldn’t have been more simple.
I called a client who happened to be driving and he asked me to call him back in 15 minutes. There were a few things I could have done to remind me to call him…
- Put a reminder post-it on my laptop (btw, I love post-its!…best low tech product ever, especially when used with Sharpies.)
- Put a note on my digital calendar with a pop-up reminder
- Use my iPhone timer
- Tie a string around my finger
I’m out of string, so I went with the timer. ;) Not only is the timer easy to set, it also gives you a visual countdown and blares when time is up (though you can choose which “blare” you like).
The time frame was short so I wasn’t worried that when the timer went off that I would forget what I was reminding myself to do. Any kind of timer can help keep youfocused, but I really I like this iPhone feature. Is it a reason to go buy an iPhone? No, but if you have one, why not make the most of it and use as many features as possible? …especially one that’s simple and easy to use?
Of course, things don’t always work as planned. When I called the client back in 15 minutes, I got his voicemail. =)
Simple and easy… Do you use a low or high tech timer?
P.S. My colleague and tech expert, Lauren Halagarda, would probably cringe at notion of putting a task on a calendar. =) As she says in her presentations, calendars are for appointments, not tasks. She’s right, and if I had a to do or task app with a reminder feature, that would have been another viable option. I know there are a couple apps out there that can do this, so more on that in a later post.
Happy Wednesday to you. I hope this post finds you well. Last week, at the end of my post, I wrote that I’d be doing some reviews of apps for iPhone and iPod Touch. Those of you that have been reading my weekly articles know that I love using Google Calendar to sync events to and from my Blackberry AND to my iCal calendars on my Mac. Google Calendar also allows you to (and recently more easily) input and track tasks as well. While I’ve occasionally used this feature, I’m not familiar with it enough to say that it will do all I need it to.
When I do task management via paper, I tend to use a customized approach, depending on the type and length of the overall task. Well, I came across what appears to be a great task management task that has been made into an app for the iPhone. That app is called Toodledo.
At first glance, the app appears to provide a tremendous amount of flexibility, and seems to be pretty easy to use. I like the ability of pop-up calendars from which you can easily pick task due dates. The app also provides the capability to organize your tasks based up on where you are and what you’re doing. As for goal setting, it allows for that as well. We all know tasks are the bedrock in achieving goals.
Sharing and collaboration are now natural activitiies when it comes to online usage and Toodledo doesn’t fall short in that capability either. It includes true collaboration in that strict permissions can be set with regard to who can modify your to-do list.
With that being said, the app is rolled up into yet another mobile app for the iPhone. I have it on my to-do list (no pun intended) to download it and give it a spin!
For those already using it or planning to use it, feel free to leave me your thoughts. I’ll be taking a week off from posting next week (16th of June), but until then, enjoy each day! Have a good one!
Professional Organizer, Brandie Kajino, is today’s guest blogger. Check out her recommended tech tools for the home office.
I have some tricks up my sleeve. If you work from home, or have a home office, you probably do, too. I have some favorite tools that keep me together and organized. Here’s my top three favorites:
Google Apps: I have been using Google Apps for over a year. One thing people ask is, ”Why Google Apps and not Gmail?” Google Apps is what’s called a “cloud technology” software as a service application. That’s a whole lotta words for a software you use online, not installed directly on your computer. Google Apps is best for business, meaning I can use it for my business email account, calendar and included software called Google Docs. Google Docs is like Microsoft Office, only you use it online like a website. You can share documents with other people, collaborate on projects and have access to your documents anywhere in the world. Love that!
The last thing I love about Apps is the Calendar and Email. Apps has the ability to sync with a PDA or smartphone, just like Outlook. The difference is having my calendar backed up (away from the inevitable PC crash) and available to me in two places. It was easy to set up, which is a big bonus in my book!
iPhone: Ok, so yes, there are lots of us who swoon over this handy little device. Let me just say this about it: The iPhone is a game changer. I’ve used a Palm Treo (and other models), Blackberries and other devices. The first thing that I loved about my iPhone was how easy it was to set up and maintain. It just WORKS. It took minutes, not a weekend (like one of the other previous devices, which shall remain nameless), to set up. It made me a believer right out of the box. There’s lots of other great things, like thousands of Apps, syncing my music library and generally just being fun to use. (I still stare at it occasionally and just wonder how I was able to see this little wonder in my lifetime!)
The thing I like most is feeling in control of email and other communications like Twitter. My iPhone lets me decide when I want to be connected and when I don’t. The best part? I don’t carry my laptop around nearly as much anymore, and my shoulders and neck are thanking me!
ActiveWords: I could not live without this little program. I’ve written about it on my blog, talked it up on my podcasts and generally given it the love and devotion it deserves. Think of ActiveWords like a treasure trove of “action words” you use like saying a magic spell. “Abracadabra, launch my email program.” “Alacazam, take me to Wikipedia.” “Hocus, pocus, show me my Facebook page.” All joking, and bad magic spell attempts, aside, this is one powerful tool!
With ActiveWords, you set up “active words” to do any number of things, like launch a program, navigate to a website or substitute text. It cuts down the mouse clicks you incur and saves you little bits of time throughout your day. It will even tell you how much your accumulated saved time is worth! Last time I checked, it had saved me over 88 hours of time! Now, that’s productive!
What are some of your favorite home office techie tools?
About The Author
Brandie Kajino, The Home Office Organizer, is a dynamic speaker, author and “organizing muse.” Empowering clients with information, tools and simple organizing solutions are her specialty. For more information on her services, product downloads, a link to her podcast & radio show, her blog and free organizing tips, visit her website: www.thehomeofficeorganizer.com or call 360-907-6485.
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