10 iOS 5 Tips For iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch Users

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ios 5 tips and tricksSo many new features get added to iOS updates that we often don’t take advantage of them all. The most recent iOS 5.0 and 5.1 updates for iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch users make the devices a little easier to navigate with several useful features for the iPhone camera, and perhaps little known preference options in the Settings area.

I’ve chosen 10 of my favorites, but I’m sure I’ve overlooked some. So please add your tips at the end of this article.

Deleting Apps

You might find that that a faster way to delete several apps on your iOS 5 device is to launch the Settings app and tap Usage. From there you will get a list of all your apps and their file size. Tap on individual apps you want to delete, and tap the Delete App button.

ios 5 tips and tricks

Quick Camera Access

Since the iOS 5 update, the Camera app can be accessed from the Lock screen, but instead of tapping on the Camera app, which causes a delay in activation, slide it up instead for quicker access to the camera. Also, if you’re taking a photo in landscape position, just press the volume-up button on the iPhone to activate the shutter. (The button works in portrait mode also, but I find it more cumbersome to use in that position.)

ios 5 tips secrets

Folder In Dock

If you have a folder of apps that you use often, you might consider putting it in your device’s Dock as you can with individual apps. This is very useful for the iPhone and iPod touch which of course have a lot less screen real-estate than the iPad.

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ios 5 tips secrets

Keyboard Shortcuts

If you’re not using keyboard shortcuts on your device, you’re missing out on a great time-saving feature. Open Settings > General, and scroll down to Keyboard > Shortcuts. Tap the upper-right + button and add a phrase, name, or regularly used word, and then assign it a shortcut. Be sure to a use a combination of letters that don’t make up the first few letters of a real word.

You probably should keep your shortcuts to 2-4 letters to make them easier to remember.

ios 5 tips secrets

When you type a shortcut in a text box, the assigned phrase or word will pop-up and you tap the Space bar to insert it.

ios 5 tricks

Ideas for shortcuts include your first and last name, your email address, frequently used text messages, and tags used in social networking sites.

Turn Off Automatic App Download

I don’t know about you, but most of the apps I download on my iPad are often not ones I use on my iPhone and visa versa. The iOS 5 update – I believe by default – automatically downloads your app purchases to all your iOS supporting devices. If this a problem for you, simply launch the Settings app, scroll down to Store, and turn off automatic downloads for Apps.

ios 5 tricks

Notifications

In Settings you can also tap on Notifications to manage the types of notifications you want for individual apps. From there you can tap the Edit button to re-arrange the order of app notifications in Notification Center.

ios 5 tricks

You can tap on each individual app and select the type of notifications you want to get, or disable notifications all together.

Ios tips 12

And you can scroll down the page and add apps to your Notifications Center that are not there.

Ios tips 13

Digital Zoom

In the iPhone camera app, you can zoom in on a subject by pinching on the screen with two fingers to bring up the 5x digital zoom. Note however, this is digital zoom, which works like a magnifying glass, rather than optical zoom. So the subjects you zoom in on won’t be as sharply focused. But it’s still a handy feature for when you need it.

Ios tips 14

Turn Off Camera Grid

If that grid overlay in the Camera app annoys you while taking pictures, simply tap on the Options button on the screen to turn it off. Or better yet learn how to use the grid to compose and/or crop photos.

Ios tips 16

Create A Playlist

Just as you create playlists in iTunes, you can also create on-the-go playlists in the iOS 5 Music App. To do so, launch the app and tap on “Add Playlist….” Create a title for the playlist, tap save, and from there tap to add individual songs from your Music library to create your list.

Ios tips 17

Use Flipboard

This is not a native iOS tip, but if you haven’t done so, download the free RSS feed magazine app Flipboard for your device, especially for the iPad. This app provides a much better experience of viewing your Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram streams.

ios 5 tips and tricks

You can view stream posts like flipping through a magazine. Links, including attached photos, in posts get downloaded to the app for better and faster viewing. You can also add and favor posts in those accounts.

For other iOS app tips, check out these articles.

Well, that’s it for my list. Let us know your favorite which was overlooked in this article.

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  • Adam

    Thanks for the tips. I use shortcuts for my email address is web forms, but the trigger space at the end can cause an error. Or worse, it might register me as addr@example.com. I’m used to deleting it after pressing space, but is there a better way?

  • ipoduser

    Thanks for the tips :) I didn’t know some of them.

    I only hope one day I could try them all without waiting too long to my iPod Touch 4th generation to respond. Since we were forced to update to iOS 5, our iPods are very slow.
    I’ts a memory management issue in iOS 5.

    • Bakari Chavanu

      Thanks for the feedback. Know what you mean. Seems like some software upgrades just force you to upgrade to the next product. I still use the original iPad, but some day it will indeed become obsolete with software upgrades.

  • Red

    Great tips! I learned a few new things!

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Affiliate Disclamer

This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.