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iOS 8 features you want to know about

Most of us know that Apple’s new iOS 8 will be released later this year and on the Apple website they show some of the upcoming features, however I wanted to share with everyone what they really want to know… what the new features coming with iOS 8 are.

“Automatically send the last known location of this iPhone to Apple when the battery drains to a critical level”
This can be helpful if you lose your phone or forget it somewhere. Currently the iCloud only keeps this data for 24 hours, but this new setting will allow Apple to access your iPhone’s (or iPad) location information for more than the 24hrs.



Thanks to the integration of Shazam into Siri, you be able to ask Siri, “What song is playing?” and she will listen to the ambient sound, using Shazam to identify music, then if everything goes right you will have the proper song information.

Credit card scanning tool: With iOS 8, if you need to enter your credit card information while browsing Safari, all you need to do is scan your credit card with the iPhone / iPad’s camera, so you do not have to manually enter in all the information.



Hide Images: Usually when you take a picture with you iDevice thepictures automatically get loaded to your collections/albums with no way to put them in a “Hidden” album. With the new iOS 8 there will be an option to “Hide” your photos, by simply holding your finger on the photo a pop up menu appears and gives you the options to Hide your Picture or Video!


Battery Usage: Ever wonder which app is causing you to have less battery life? Well this little feature will definitely be of help. The guys at Cupertino has created a way to view your battery usage on iOS 8, then you can decide how badly you need that app open or to just close it and save your battery.
Camera: The Camera app got some great improvements this time. Things added to the iOS 8 camera apps; Time-Lapse mode, self-timer mode ( 3 and 10sec), Focus controls and even retrieve recently deleted photos.Mail notifications: This can be a great feature for those important emails, you can now have a notification per thread – Swiping left on an email message will allow you to delete, archive or Flag it, if you click the “More” tab you will then get the option to receive a push notification whenever a reply is sent to that particular email thread. 


Allow Notifications: There is finally you can now silent certain app notifications.

Indoor Mapping – With the addition of the M7 processor and iPhone motion sensors to the CoreLocation API will allow venue owners to create indoor positioning systems (IPS) that can be used to point the user in the right directions and floor or to direct them to points of interest.

There are many more added features to iOS 8 but the ones I just went through are the ones that stand out in my opinion.

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More Handy Tips and Tricks for iPhone 5

More Handy Tips and Tricks for iPhone 5

I recently posted a partial list of helpful tips on hidden features of the iPhone 5.  As I said before, those were just the tip of the iceberg!  The iPhone 5 has so many handy features, I decided to bring you a few more.

Built-In Camera HDR

The camera that is included on an iPhone 5 is a lot better than many of the other smart phone cameras out there.  However, we all know that there are just some environments that don’t photograph well, no matter how hard you try.  With the iPhone 5’s camera, high-dynamic range (HDR) photography is possible.  HDR permits the camera to change an image as it is being captured.  This results in the best possible picture that can be taken in a particular environment.

When the HDR mode on your camera is engaged, your camera takes three images of varying exposures successively and at a very high speed.  These three exposures are intended to capture three different areas of the photograph independently.  One of these is optimized for darker areas, one for lighter areas and a third for the mid-range of light and dark areas.  Your iPhone then parses out the best of each of these images and puts them together to form the full, final, high-quality image.  In the event that you’re not satisfied with how your iPhone renders the image, the HDR and non-HDR images are both saved to the memory, allowing you to use the one you like best.

If you want to activate this option, simply bring up your camera and then go to Options.  You’ll see a toggle switch for HDR.  Turn it on and you’re all done.

The HDR mode works best when used for close-up photos and outdoor shots, as well as in darker environments when a flash is not appropriate.  HDR will not provide good results in bright lighting conditions or when the camera is in motion.


Reply With Message

If you’re in the middle of something and your phone rings, you may not be able to answer it.  No worries, though, because in this situation, you can reply to the caller with a text message.  It’s simple and easy to do and can save a lot of rounds of phone tag.  Letting someone know that you can’t talk right now also allows you to head off additional calls that you won’t be able to take.

When a call comes in, you’ll see an icon representing a phone located next to the green button you would normally use to answer the call.  When you find that phone icon, just swipe up for a menu, then choose “Reply With Message.”  This will prompt three messages to appear on your screen.  You can choose one to reply with immediately, or you can create your own custom message when the call comes in.  Your caller gets routed to your voice mail while you’re sending the text.

You can even choose to personalize the preset messages that pop up when using the “Reply With Message” function.  To do this, navigate to Settings>Phone>Reply With Message.  You can change any or all of the preset messages with a message of your own devising.


Safari’s Reading List

Safari allows you to make a reading list by tagging pages so that they are saved and can be read at a later time.  Saving a page to your Reading List is very easy.  You can do so simply by tapping the menu button (found at the bottom of the Safari page screen) and from the menu that pops up, choose “Add to Reading List.”

It’s not hard to find your tagged pages, either.  Just access Safari and go to Bookmarks>Reading List.



Global Languages

Have you ever been irritated by the fact that you can’t find an “n” with a tilde when you want to talk about the jalapeño poppers you had last night?  Your iPhone 5 can help you with that!  The iPhone 5 has a penchant for global languages, so if you’re actually bilingual, or you just want to be able to type jalapeño correctly, your iPhone 5 will take care of it if you know what to do.  You just need to hold your finger on a letter that you’re wanting to change; your iPhone will pull up a variety of versions for that letter in many different languages.  Select the one you need and poof, you’re international!

These are just a few of the additional, helpful tips to help you get the most out of your iPhone 5.  I’ll be hunting down more of these useful tips, so stay tuned to get the best performance from your device.









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Discovering Hidden iPhone 5 Functions

Discover the hidden functions of your iPhone 5

Discovering Hidden iPhone 5 Functions

Many users are incredibly familiar with their iPhones.  Through daily use, it’s easy to figure out most of the functions your iPhone 5 possesses, leading the user to believe they know all there is to know about using their device.  More often than not, even the most avid iPhone 5 users are in the dark about some relatively simple (and very useful) functions of which the iPhone 5 is capable.

Some helpful but (sort of) hidden features that have come to light have been enormously helpful to many iPhone users.  These include the screenshot ability, wherein a screenshot of your iPhone’s screen can be captured by pressing the Home and Power buttons at the same time, and the removal of SMS preview from the lock screen.   This feature allows you to keep your texts private when your phone is unattended and can be accomplished by navigating to Settings>Notifications>Messages and then setting the “Show Preview” option to “Off.”  However, just because you might be aware of these handy features does not mean that you know all there is to know about your iPhone’s hidden capabilities.  Read on for some of the more helpful “hidden” features you may not know about.

Saving Time…and Your Thumb!

One of the best and most underrated of the iPhone 5’s features allows you to go immediately to the top of any page you’re visiting, just by tapping the top of the screen where your clock is located.  You won’t have to scroll all the way back to the top, meaning you can get to items near the top of the page or get back to the search box quickly and easily.


Which Way is Up?

If you’ve ever been in the midst of reading or playing a game and changed position a bit, you’ve probably been frustrated by the screen of your iPhone having orientation problems.  Portrait to landscape and back again, the screen’s changing orientation can make you lose your place or flub your game.  There’s a fix for this problem that is much easier than you might think.

Start by double-clicking the Home button on your iPhone.  This causes the device to pull up a listing of recently-opened apps; simply swipe from left to right on the screen when this list comes up.  You’ll see a set of music controls, along with a gray square sporting a circular arrow to the left of the controls.  Just tap the square.  Your device will then flash the message that your screen orientation is locked.  Turn your iPhone this way and that, and marvel at the steadiness of the screen!  Your screen will only lock into portrait orientation, though, so some features will require that you unlock the screen orientation by accessing the gray square and tapping again (as outlined above).

Advanced Calculation

While a simple calculator is enough for the calculations that most users want to carry out, your iPhone 5 can accomplish feats of scientific calculations that you may have never dreamed of.  You can access a fully functional scientific calculator just by rotating your iPhone to the landscape orientation when you’ve got the calculator app open.  This is one of those features that you won’t be able to access if you’ve got the orientation locked on your device, so make sure to unlock it if you need to access the more sophisticated calculator.

Weekly Planning

You need to be able to see in an instant if you’re available during specific times or on individual days.  Your iPhone can help you with that in its built-in calendar app.  Simply open your iPhone’s calendar for a monthly view and then tilt your device so that the screen changes orientation to landscape mode (unlock your orientation if you’ve got it locked).  The view of the calendar will change from monthly to weekly, showing a detailed summary of the events you have scheduled for that week.  If you’ve tagged your appointments correctly, your weekly calendar view will be color coded for events at home, work, etc.


Silent Alerts

Some users have expressed disappointment that iPhones do not have a blinking light that can alert you to incoming messages.  Actually, iPhones do have this capability.  The built-in LED light on the camera can be set to provide a flashing light alert for incoming or waiting messages.  Simply navigate to Settings>General>Accessibility and go to the Hearing heading.  Under that heading, set the toggle switch to “On” for the “LED Flash for Alerts” option.

Making Shortcuts

It can be both time-consuming and irritating to have to keep bringing up Safari and typing in the name of a site you visit often.  You can make your own shortcut to your favorite websites that will appear on your home screen.  You’ll have to visit the site from Safari in order to make your shortcut, but from then on, it’ll be instantly accessible.

When you’re visiting the page you’d like to make a shortcut for, you’ll need to access the menu.  The button for this is located at the bottom of your Safari screen and appears to be a rectangle with an arrow pointing out of it.  Simply select the option to “Add to Home Screen” and then choose a name for your new shortcut.

The Tip of the Iceberg

There are lots of other handy little tips and tricks for the iPhone 5.  Listing them would take more time and space than I have at the moment, but fear not, more will be forthcoming!  Keep your eyes peeled for the next batch of helpful hints on getting the most out of your iPhone 5.




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How to Create Custom Vibration Patterns in iOS 6 for iPhone

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A great feature in iOS 6 for iPhone is the ability to create custom vibration patterns which users can apply to contacts or phone events (such as Alerts). The process is actually quite simple, and pretty fun for the nerdier people out there. Dave Caolo explains:

For example, assign your custom pattern to important contacts, so you know if you should bother to look at your phone during a meeting or other important activity. Or, get really creative and use a little morse code to spell out your wife’s name, for example, or “GOD NO” if it’s your in-laws.

To set custom vibration patterns, navigate to Settings > Sounds > Ringtons > Vibrations. Scroll to the end of the page and select “Create New Vibration”. Tap the screen to begin and continue tapping when you want a vibration to occur — these are denoted as black dots on the progress bar. Tap “Stop” when you’re done and save your pattern with a custom name.

You can now assign that custom pattern to any contact or event that you want.

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