iPad Portable Genius - Paul McFedries - E-Book

iPad Portable Genius E-Book

Paul McFedries

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Increase your iPad IQ with this genius-level guide to the Apple iPad If you want to squeeze every last bit of incredible from your Apple iPad we've got you covered with this newly revised iPad Portable Genius. Want to learn how to connect to a network? How to configure your tablet? How to surf the web more comfortably? All while keeping your identity and accounts private and secure? With the iPad Portable Genius as your guide, you'll unlock the full potential of your iPad in no time at all. You'll learn how to: * Get the most out of sending and receiving your email * Have fun with your images and take crystal-clear photos every time * Shoot and edit video right on your iPad * Manage your busy schedule with calendars Perfect for anyone looking to save time and reveal the true power and flexibility of their iPad, the iPad Portable Genius, Fourth Edition contains all the new, engaging, and extensively illustrated info you need to master your tablet.

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Copyright © 2021 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana

Published simultaneously in Canada

ISBN: 978-1-119-76358-1

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About the Author

Paul McFedries is a full-time technical writer. Paul has been authoring technical books since 1991 and has nearly 100 books to his credit. Paul’s books have sold more than four million copies worldwide. These books include the Wiley titles Windows 10 Portable Genius; iPhone Portable Genius, Sixth Edition; Teach Yourself VISUALLY Windows 10, Third Edition; and G Suite for Dummies. You can visit Paul on the web at www.paulmcfedries.com or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/paulmcf.


Being a technical writer is an awesome vocation: You get to work at home, you get to set your own schedule, and you get to help other people understand and use technology, which is a big warm-fuzzy-feeling generator. But perhaps the best part of technical writing is getting to be among the first to not only use but also really dive into the latest and greatest software and hardware. The hardware side is often the most fun, because it means you get to play with gadgets, and that’s a gadget geek’s definition of a dream job. So, to say I had a blast researching and writing about the latest version of the iPad redefines the word understatement. What self-respecting gadget guy wouldn’t have a perma-grin while poking and prodding this device to see just what it can do?

And what self-respecting technical writer wouldn’t be constantly shaking his head in admiration while working with the amazing editorial team at Wiley? The people I worked with directly included Associate Publisher Jim Minatel, Project Editors Maureen and Scott Tullis, Copy Editor Kim Wimpsett, and Content Refinement Specialist Barath Kumar Rajasekaran. My heartfelt thanks to all of you for your outstanding work on this project.

iPad® Portable Genius

Table of Contents


Title Page


About the Author



Chapter 1: How Do Get Started with My iPad?

Using the Top Button

Using the Home Button

Setting the Volume

Working with the Touchscreen

Editing with Your iPad

Configuring iPad from the Control Center

Chapter 2: How Do I Connect to a Network?

Making Wi-Fi Network Connections

Working with Wi-Fi Connections

Tethering to an iPhone Internet Connection

Working with Cellular-Enabled iPads

Activating Airplane Mode

Connecting Bluetooth Devices

Chapter 3: How Do I Configure My iPad?

Customizing the iPad Home Screen

Dealing with App Notifications

Trying Out a Few More Useful iPad Customizations

Chapter 4: How Can I Get More Out of Web Surfing?

Surfing with the Touchscreen

Utilizing Pro Tips for Easier Web Browsing

Dealing with Forms

Enhancing Web Browsing Privacy

Making Safari Even Easier and Better

Chapter 5: How Do I Make the Most of Email?

Managing Your Accounts

Configuring Some Useful Mail Settings

Working with Email Messages

Chapter 6: How Can I Have Fun with Photos?

Browsing and Viewing Your Photos

Editing a Photo

Using the Cameras

Chapter 7: How Can I Create Video on My iPad?

Recording Video

Editing Recorded Video

Creating Videos with the Clips App

Making Movies with iMovie

Chapter 8: How Do I Manage My Contacts?

Getting Started with Contacts

Creating a Contact

Editing a Contact

Getting More Out of Contacts

Chapter 9: How Do I Track My Events and Appointments?

Getting Started with the Calendar App

Tracking Your Events

Getting More Out of the Calendar App

Working with Reminders

Chapter 10: How Can I Navigate My World with iPad?

Working with Location Services

Mapping Locations

Navigating with Maps

Chapter 11: How Do I Protect My iPad?

Locking Your iPad

Configuring Your Tablet to Sleep Automatically

Backing Up Your Tablet

Setting Restrictions on a Child’s iPad

Chapter 12: How Do I Solve iPad Problems?

Troubleshooting iPad Problems: A Quick Guide

Troubleshooting iPad Problems Step-by-Step


End User License Agreement

List of Illustrations

Chapter 1

1.1 On all recent iPads, you can find the Top button on the right side of the t...

1.2 Use the Slide to Power Off screen to shut down your iPad.

1.3 Double-press the Top button to authorize an app or in-app purchase.

1.4 Flick down on the Home screen and then type your search text.

1.5 iPadOS displays the touchscreen keyboard automatically when you tap inside ...

1.6 For noneditable text, select it and then tap Copy to copy it.

1.7 Tap and hold editable text to see these options.

1.8 Select your text and then choose what you want to do with it.

1.9 Shake your iPad to display the Undo dialog.

1.10 The Control Center offers “one-flick” access to some important iPad tools.

Chapter 2

2.1 The first step for making a Wi-Fi connection is to see which networks are a...

2.2 You can connect to a hidden Wi-Fi network using the Other Network dialog.

2.3 If your Wi-Fi network isn’t using the optimal security type, you see a Weak...

2.4 To make a Wi-Fi connection to the iPhone hotspot, display the list of wirel...

2.5 When your iPad is tethered, it shows the Personal Hotspot icon in the statu...

2.6 The Airplane Mode icon appears in the status bar when Airplane Mode is acti...

2.7 Tapping the Bluetooth switch to On makes your iPad discoverable.

2.8 Your iPad displays a passkey for pairing with the Bluetooth keyboard.

2.9 Use the AirPlay screen to select your paired Bluetooth headphones.

Chapter 3

3.1 To create an app folder, drop one app icon on another.

3.2 iPadOS asks for your permission to allow notifications from an app.

3.3 Viewing a notification usually displays one or more buttons, such as the Tr...

3.4 iPadOS offers per-app customization of the notification settings.

3.5 Tap and hold the Hide Keyboard button to see these options.

3.6 Tap Split to split the keyboard for easier thumb typing.

3.7 Tap Floating to float the keyboard so that you can easily move it out of th...

Chapter 4

4.1 Long press a link to see its domain, a thumbnail preview, and some useful l...

4.2 You can open a new tab by tapping the New Tab button (+) or by tapping and ...

4.3 Tap Open New Tabs in Background to Off to switch to new tabs right away.

4.4 Today’s web pages are often cluttered with elements that get in the way of ...

4.5 The Reader version of a web page removes the clutter to focus on the text.

4.6 In a form that contains two or more text boxes, use the Previous and Next b...

4.7 Tap a list to see its items in a separate box for easier selection.

4.8 Tap AutoFill Contact to fill in form fields that correspond to your contact...

4.9 If you set up Safari to save passwords, you see this dialog when you log in...

4.10 Safari asks if it you want to use a site’s saved login data the next time ...

4.11 Safari highlights the first usage of your search text.

Chapter 5

5.1 Use the Add Account dialog to select the service you want to set up.

5.2 For most account types, you temporarily disable email checks by tapping the...

5.3 Use the Mailboxes pane to choose the other account.

5.4 A circled arrow on the right side of a message indicates a thread.

5.5 You can use the Format dialog to apply a wide range of formatting to the se...

5.6 Swipe right on a message to mark it as read.

5.7 Swipe left on a message to flag it.

Chapter 6

6.1 The All Photos tab shows — you guessed it! — all your photos.

6.2 In the Control Center, tap the Screen Mirroring button and then tap your Ap...

6.3 The Photos app’s cropping and straightening tools.

6.4 The features of the Camera app.

6.5 Tap the screen to set that location as the focus of the photo.

6.6 Long press the photo subject to lock the exposure and focus.

6.7 Set the Mode switch to Pano to display the Panorama tool.

Chapter 7

7.1 The Camera app in Video mode.

7.2 To trim a video, use the Timeline to specify the starting and ending points...

7.3 The recording mode of the Clips app.

7.4 You can apply filters and other effects to your video.

7.5 You see a screen similar to this when you open a video for editing in iMovi...

7.6 Tap a clip to display the trimming tools.

7.7 Tap the transition to open the Transition Settings window.

7.8 Tap the photo to display the Ken Burns effect tools.

7.9 After you select a song or audio track, iMovie displays the track as a gree...

7.10 In the Project Settings screen, tap a theme.

Chapter 8

8.1 In landscape mode, you see the Contacts pane on the left and the current co...

8.2 Use the New Contact dialog to enter your new contact’s details.

8.3 Tap the label you want to use for a contact’s phone number.

8.4 Don’t forget to take advantage of the on-screen keyboard’s URL-friendly key...

8.5 Tap Twitter to see the social networks supported by Contacts.

8.6 Use this dialog to add a photo or other image to a contact.

8.7 The Add Field dialog shows the hidden fields that you can add to any contac...

8.8 If your iPad receives an email message with an attached vCard, an icon for ...

Chapter 9

9.1 Your tablet’s administrative assistant: the beautiful and talented Calendar...

9.2 Fill in the New Event dialog to add an event to your calendar.

9.3 All-day events appear in the all-day section, near the top of the Day and W...

9.4 Use the Event Alert screen to tell Calendar when to remind you about your e...

9.5 Use the Details dialog to set up your reminder.

Chapter 10

10.1 Apps that can use location data require your permission to use that data.

10.2 Use the Location Services settings to control how apps can access your loc...

10.3 Use the Maps app to map your world.

10.4 When you tap a location in the search results, Maps displays the location ...

10.5 Bird’s-eye view, indeed; Maps in Flyover mode.

10.6 Tap Tracking to see your current location as a blue dot on the map.

10.7 Maps offers a few driving routes originating from your current location.

10.8 Use the Change Route dialog to specify a different starting location.

10.9 Tap a Roadwork icon to see info about the construction.

Chapter 11

11.1 Use the passcode-related settings to configure the passcode lock.

11.2 This is the screen you see when using a complex passcode to unlock your iP...

11.3 Use these Face ID switches to control what you can authorize with your fac...

11.4 Make sure the iCloud Backup switch is On for automatic iPad backups.

Chapter 12

12.1 To force-quit a frozen app, drag its multitasking screen thumbnail up to t...

12.2 On iPads without a Home button, press and hold the Top switch and a volume...

12.3 You see this dialog when your iPad is running low on storage space.

12.4 The iPad Storage screen shows how much storage is being used and by what.

12.5 If an app has a Documents section, it means you can free up storage space ...



Title Page


About the Author


Table of Contents

Begin Reading




























































































































































































































There are many reasons for the success of the iPad, as well as its smaller cousin, the iPhone. However, if you polled fans of these devices, I bet one reason would quickly bubble up to the top spot: the touch interface. It’s slick, elegant, and just so easy: a tap here, a tap there, and away you go.

Using the iPad touch interface is like playing in one of those seaside areas where the water is only a couple of feet deep no matter where you go; you can still have all kinds of fun, but you never have to swim hard, and there’s little chance of drowning. However, if you walk out far enough in many of those ocean areas, you suddenly come to the edge of an underwater shelf, where the sandy bottom gives way to the inky ocean depths.

Your tablet, too, has its unexplored depths: hidden settings, obscure features, out-of-the-way preferences, and little-known techniques. The usefulness of some of these features is debatable, at best, but many of them can help you work faster, more easily, and more efficiently. Rather than swimming blindly through the murky waters of your tablet’s deep end, what you need is a companion that can guide you through these waters, enable you to be more productive, and help you solve problems wherever you and your tablet happen to be hanging out.

Welcome to iPad® Portable Genius, Fourth Edition. This book is your guide to all things iPad packaged in an easy-to-use, easy-to-access, and eminently portable format. In this book, I cover how to get more out of your iPad by accessing all of the really powerful and timesaving features that aren’t obvious at a casual glance. I also explain how to avoid the tablet’s occasional annoying character traits and, in those cases where such behavior can’t be avoided, how to work around it.

Finally, this book tells you how to prevent iPad problems from occurring and, just in case your preventative measures are for naught, how to fix many common problems yourself. This edition also includes updates on the new features of the latest iPads, as well as the most important and useful new features in iOS 14.

This book is for iPad users who know the basics but want to take their education to a higher level. It’s a book for people who want to be more productive, more efficient, more creative, and more self-sufficient (at least as far as their tablet goes). It’s a book for people who use their iPad every day but would like to incorporate it into more of their day-to-day activities. It’s a book I had a blast writing, so I think it’s a book you’ll enjoy reading.

Chapter 1: How Do Get Started with My iPad?

We live in a world where “design” is shorthand for “the more bells and whistles the better.” That’s why, when you take a look at most tablet devices, they’re positively bristling with buttons, ports, switches, keys, and other operable knickknacks. Ah, but now take a look at your iPad, which, by contrast, has just a few physical buttons (especially the iPad Pro). That minimalist design is a sight for sore eyes in today’s world, but it leads to a question: If the iPad has just a few operable buttons, how are you supposed to operate the darn thing? It’s a great question, and this chapter provides the answer by giving you a big-picture tour of your iPad. You learn what those buttons are there for, and you learn perhaps the most important iPad skill: how to use the remarkable touchscreen.

Using the Top Button

Using the Home Button

Setting the Volume

Working with the Touchscreen

Editing with Your iPad

Configuring iPad from the Control Center

Using the Top Button

Your iPad doesn’t have many buttons, but it does have a few, and arguably the most important of these is the Top button (also called the Sleep/Wake button). As I point out in Figure 1.1, the Top button resides on the top right edge of your tablet, assuming you’re holding the tablet in the so- called portrait orientation demonstrated in Figure 1.1.

1.1 On all recent iPads, you can find the Top button on the right side of the top edge.

The Top button has three main functions: sleeping and waking the iPad, powering the tablet on and off, and authorizing purchases made with the device. The next three sections provide the details.

Sleeping and waking the iPad

You put your iPad into sleep mode (sometimes called standby mode) by pressing the Top button. Sleep mode turns off the screen (which conserves battery power and prevents accidental screen taps), but some background activities still occur (such as receiving messages and playing music). Press the Top button once again to wake up your iPad and see the Lock screen. You now have two ways to proceed:

Slide a finger up from the bottom of the screen.

Press the Home button (if your iPad has one).

This either unlocks the tablet right away or prompts you to enter your passcode, if you use one (if you don’t, you should; see Chapter 11).

Turning the iPad off and back on again

You won’t turn off your iPad often, but here are a couple of scenarios where shutting down your tablet can be useful:

If your iPad’s battery level is critically low and you can’t charge it, turning off your iPad is a good idea because then the device consumes no power. You can then turn the iPad back on whenever you need to use it.

If a glitch has caused your iPad to freeze or behave erratically, turning the device off and then back on can often solve the problem (I talk more about this in

Chapter 11


To turn off your iPad, use one of the following techniques, depending on your iPad model:

Your iPad has Face ID.

Press and hold the Top button and one of the Volume buttons for a couple of seconds.

Your iPad has a Home button.

Press and hold the Top button for a couple of seconds.

The Slide to Power Off slider appears on the screen, as shown in Figure 1.2. (Note that you can tap Cancel if you change your mind and decide to leave your iPad on, or just do nothing and iPadOS will cancel the screen for you automatically after about 30 seconds). To shut down the iPad, use a finger to drag Slide to Power Off all the way to the right.

iPadOS is the software that controls just about everything that happens behind the scenes of your iPad. The “OS” part stands for operating system, so in that sense iPadOS performs essentially the same functions as Windows does on a PC and macOS does on a Macintosh computer.

1.2 Use the Slide to Power Off screen to shut down your iPad.

To turn your iPad back on, press and hold the Top button until the Apple logo appears on the screen.

Making a purchase

If your iPad supports Face ID (see Chapter 11 to learn more), you can also use the Top button to authorize purchases on the device:

Using Apple Pay in a store.

Double-press the Top button to use your default Apple Pay credit card. To learn how to set up Apple Pay, see

Chapter 3


Confirming an app or in-app purchase.

When you see the Double Click to Pay message on your iPad (see

Figure 1.3

), double-press the Top button to approve the purchase.

1.3 Double-press the Top button to authorize an app or in-app purchase.

Using the Home Button

If you have an iPad that comes with a Home button — that is, the circular button on the face of the tablet at the bottom — then you’ll use that button a lot because the Home button has quite a few functions. Here are the main ones:

When the iPad is in sleep mode, pressing the Home button wakes the device and displays the lock screen.

When the iPad is running, pressing the Home button returns the device to the Home screen.

Pressing and holding the Home button invokes Siri, which enables you to control many iPad features using voice commands. (If Siri is turned off, pressing and holding the Home button opens a window that asks if you want to turn on Siri.)

Double-pressing the Home button displays the multitasking screen, which enables you to quickly switch between your running apps.

If your tablet is in sleep mode, press the Home button to display the Lock screen. (This screen appears for up to about six seconds; if you don’t do anything, the tablet drops back into sleep mode.)

Setting the Volume

The buttons that enable you to control the volume are located on the right edge of the iPad when you hold the tablet in portrait orientation; see Figure 1.1. There are two volume buttons:

Volume Up.

This is the button situated closer to the top edge of the iPad. Pressing this button increases the volume.

Volume Down.

This is the button situated just below Volume Up. Pressing this button decreases the volume.

When you press a volume button, iPadOS displays a horizontal volume meter that shows you the current volume level.

Working with the Touchscreen

If you’ve only ever controlled devices by using a keyboard and mouse, you’re in for a treat when you start using the iPad’s touchscreen. The “touch” part of the name means that you do everything on the iPad — zooming in and out, scrolling through screens and lists, dragging items here and there, and even typing messages — by using a finger (or, in some cases, two or more fingers) to perform particular movements, known as gestures, directly on the screen.

There’s a learning curve, but it’s not a steep one, and it won’t be long before you’re wishing that every digital device came with a touchscreen.

The touchscreen is a marvel, but if you intend to do serious work on your iPad, then you might consider augmenting your tablet with some extra technology that can make your life easier. If you write a lot, then easily the most important accessory you can invest in is an external keyboard (such as Apple’s Magic Keyboard or Smart Keyboard). For drawing or writing notes, consider a digital pen (such as the Apple Pencil).

Understanding touchscreen gestures

Learning to use the iPad’s touchscreen means learning how to use gestures to make the iPad do your bidding. You might think there must be dozens of gestures to master, but happily there are a mere half dozen:


Use a finger (it doesn’t matter which one; even a thumb will work) to lightly and quickly press and release a specific part of the iPad screen. Tapping initiates just about any action on the iPad. For example, you tap to launch an app, select a check box, turn a switch on or off, enter text using the on-screen keyboard, run a command button, and much more.

Long press.

Place a finger on a screen object (such as a Home screen icon) for a few seconds. In most cases, long pressing an object displays a list of commands that you can perform with the object.


Use a finger to tap a specific part of the screen twice, one right after the other. Most of the time, double-tapping something zooms in on it, and a second double-tap zooms back out.


Place a finger on the screen and then move it along the screen (which, depending on what you’re doing, could be up, down, left, right, or diagonally). You use this gesture — which is also called a


— to scroll through screens or lists, drag objects to different parts of the screen, and much more.


Place two fingers on the screen relatively close together and then move them apart. You use this gesture to zoom in on items such as photos and web pages.


Place two fingers on the screen relatively far apart and then move them closer together. You use this gesture to zoom out of something (so it’s the opposite of the spread gesture).

Searching for stuff on your iPad

Each new generation of the iPad bumps up the space available for storage: from 4GB in the original tablet to 1TB (terabyte, or 1,024GB) in a top-of-the-line iPad Pro. That’s a lot of data, but the more photos, videos, music, email, messages, apps, and documents you stuff into your iPad, the harder it gets to find what you’re looking for. Fortunately, your iPad comes with a powerful search feature that makes it easy to find what you want. Here’s how it works:

Return to any Home screen.

Swipe down anywhere on the screen.

Actually, don’t swipe down from the top of the screen because that gesture displays the Notification Center instead of the Search box.

Tap inside the Search box and then enter your search text.

Your iPad immediately begins displaying items that match your text as you type, as shown in

Figure 1.4


Tap Search to display a list of all the results.

If you see what you’re looking for, tap it.

1.4 Flick down on the Home screen and then type your search text.

If you’re getting way too many search results, you can customize iPad searching to not include results from certain apps or their content. Open the Settings app and then tap Siri & Search. In the Siri & Search settings that appear, for each app you want to remove from your search results, tap the app, tap the Show App in Search switch to Off, and then tap the Show Content in Search switch to Off.

Switching from one app to another

You’re free to run multiple apps at the same time on your iPad. However, it’s a rare iPad user who runs apps one after the other without having to return to a previous app. For example, you might open Mail to check your messages, run a few other apps, then sometime later want to return to Mail to see if there’s anything new.

That’s no problem, but the technique you use to switch from one app to another depends on what kind of iPad you have:

For all iPad models, slide a finger up from the bottom edge of the screen; stop when you get to about the middle of the screen.

If your iPad has a Home button, double-press the Home button.

Either way, iPadOS displays the multitasking screen, which offers thumbnail versions of the apps you’ve used recently. Swipe sideways to bring the thumbnail of the app you want into view and then tap the app to switch to it.

Shutting down an app

The apps on your iPad don’t come with a “Close” command or button. That’s because when you switch to a different app, iPadOS automatically suspends the app you were working on, so you almost never have to worry about closing an app. However, there are two exceptions to this:

Shutting down one or more apps can make it easier to navigate the app thumbnails in the multitasking screen.

If an app is frozen and is preventing you from working in other apps, shutting down the stuck app usually fixes things.

To shut down an app that you've used recently, follow these steps:

Display the multitasking screen:

Slide a finger up from the bottom edge of the screen; then pause about halfway up.

Double-press the Home button (if your iPad has one).

Locate the thumbnail for the app you want to shut down.

Drag the app thumbnail up to the top of the screen.

iPadOS shuts down the app.

Typing on the touchscreen keyboard

Your iPad comes with a touch keyboard — the portrait mode version of the keyboard is shown in Figure 1.5. To get the keyboard on-screen, tap inside any control that requires text input, such as a text box, a search box, or an address bar. You “type” on the keyboard by tapping each key, just like you would on a physical keyboard.

1.5 iPadOS displays the touchscreen keyboard automatically when you tap inside a text control.

Accessing special keys

Besides the usual letters, numbers, and symbols, the touchscreen keyboard offers some special techniques and keys that allow you to do some tricks:


These keys — there’s one to the left of the Z key and one to the right of the period (.) key — work similarly to Shift on a regular keyboard. You have two ways to use Shift on your iPad: