iOS 8: Start Website-Specific Searches From The Safari Address Bar

 

iOS 8 website search

Here’s a little iOS 8 tip for quickly searching sites you’ve already visited in Safari: while in the address bar, start typing the first four or five letters of a website, add a space, and then type in a search term. You’ll find that the first result in the suggestion list (below the URL bar) will become an option to search that website, and tapping on that line will initiate the search.

The only catch is that you have to manually run a search on the website at least once (which is how Safari learns how the site formats search queries). In our example case, this means visiting www.iPadInsight.com, typing a search into our search bar, and then pressing enter to execute the search. Once you’ve done that once on our site, you’ll see results similar to the one in my screenshot above. This is a really useful feature for power users, since it saves you from having to load a website before actually getting to initiate your search.

This is also a great tip for people who want to keep the number of apps down on their iPads. You could download apps for Yelp and IMDB, but using this trick puts the powerful search results of those websites at your fingertips, without any extra apps to clutter up your home screen.

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iOS 8: How to See Which Apps Are Using the Most Battery

iOS 8 Apps Battery Usage

Battery life can be a big factor in getting the most out of the iPad and other mobile devices. When you have battery life struggles, it can be very useful to know what’s causing any rapid battery drain – and sometimes that can end up being an individual app or two.

Now in iOS 8, we have more insight on this issue – and we can see which apps are using the most battery in the last 24 hours and the last 7 days. Here’s how:

— Open the Settings app

— Tap on the General section on the left sidebar

— Then tap on ‘Usage’ in the General area on the right

— Next tap on ‘Battery Usage’ right at the top of the Usage page

This will bring up the Battery usage page – which shows the amount of usage since the last battery charge, standby time, and then a listing of the apps that have used up battery during the selected time frame, from highest usage to lowest.

You can tap the headers of this section to switch between viewing Last 24 Hours and Last 7 Days.

This should be a very useful feature – not least for identifying potential battery hog type apps.

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iOS 8: How To Add Widgets to Notification Center

iOS 8 Notification Center

One of the areas that Apple has opened up in iOS 8 is access to Notification Center – as in access for third party apps. Now it’s supported and you can add Notification Center widgets for some of your favorite 3rd party apps.

Here’s how:

— Open Notification Center – with a swipe down from the top of the iPad screen from within any app or from the home screen

[click to continue reading…]

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Hiding Purchased Music On Your iPad

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John Gruber linked to this awesome MacWorld article that details how to use iTunes to hide the free U2 album on your iOS music app. I actually want to listen to this latest U2 album, but I do want to hide the crappy singles I’ve gotten from Starbucks, so this really came in handy for me. I thought it came to actually deleting the music from my iTunes Match library, but the real trick is heading to the music section of the iTunes Store and then hiding purchased music from there.

I think this also points out how iTunes-reliant music management still is within the Apple ecosystem. If you just want to buy and listen to music or make playlists, it’s definitely easy to use an iPad for all of your music needs. However, there are still quite a number of things that require iTunes on a Mac or PC:

  • setting the volume of an individual song (great for older recordings)
  • adding lyrics to songs
  • telling iOS to skip a song during Shuffle
  • add or change album artwork
  • change any part of the song’s metadata

That said, I don’t really mind having to manage these things from my Mac right now. My laptop still strikes me as the easiest place to manage a large collection of albums, but I wouldn’t mind having the option in future versions of iOS.

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Quick Tip: Use iTunes to Transfer Files to Compatible Apps On Your iPad

File Sharing tab iTunes

Here’s a tip we published almost four years ago, but seeing as I used it quite recently at work, I thought I’d give it a refresh. Now that iPads are infiltrating the office space and boardrooms, I see more and more co-workers wanting to take videos and other files into meetings with them. This isn’t a problem on a PC or Mac because they can just use USB drives, but iOS 7 devices like the iPad aren’t as easy to transfer files to (iOS 8 will change this a bit with iCloud Drive, but it’s not here yet).

Fortunately, as long as you have a computer running a recent version of iTunes, it’s fairly easy to transfer files to an iPad using the USB cable (30-pin or Lightning, depending on your device):

  1. Load up iTunes on the computer
  2. Plug the iPad into the computer
  3. Select the iPad from the left-hand side of the iTunes sidebar
    • if the sidebar is hidden, use the View menu at the top to access it again.
  4. If iTunes ever offers to sync with the computer, cancel it.
  5. Head to the Apps tab of the iPad within iTunes, then scroll all the way down to the File Sharing list.
  6. Click on the app you’d like to send your files to, and then drag your files into the right hand side of the window (labelled Documents)

If you’re looking for good candidate apps to transfer files to, VLC can play most any kind of video you throw at it, and Good Reader 4 can display most any other kind of file you’d want to manage on an iPad.

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iPad Tips: Using Smart Mailboxes on iOS 7

One of the killer additions to the Mail app in iOS 7 are Smart Mailboxes, which help organize all sent messages, messages with attachments, and more. The VIP mailbox is displayed by default, but you’ll want to tap on the Edit button on the top-right corner of the Mail app to reveal the other Smart […]

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How To: Use Private Browsing on the iPad

Private browsing is a very useful feature for the Safari browser app on the iPad and iOS. In private browsing mode your browsing history is not recorded. So, for example, if you’re secretly browsing around for a perfect birthday gift for your partner (who shares your iPad) and you don’t want them to see your […]

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iPad Tips: iOS 7 Gesture Guide

Let’s be honest, sometimes it can look a bit weird to the uninitiated outsider when they see you magically waving your fingers in different ways all over your shiny iPad (things look even weirder if you start talking to it via Siri too). However, from a user’s point of view, gestures on the iPad can […]

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