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Top 6 Quick Tips to Make Every iPad 3 User Smile

May 1, 2012

When I purchased my brand new  iPad I couldn’t wait to get home and start playing with it.  One of the greatest benefits of the iPad is that it is so intuitive.  You can use simple “finger gestures” to easily gain information quickly – a truly awesome user experience.

I did discover through all sorts of tapping, swiping and flicking that this simple little device was easy to use. The ease of using it did leave me wondering if I was using this pricey little invention to its full potential… and so began my quest to discover some of the hidden treasures the iPad offers, all so that I could quickly access information and become more intimate with my new friend.

First I decided to start with the iPad User Guide.  Yes, I am one of those disturbed people who enjoy reading instruction manuals even when I don’t have insomnia.

Finding the user guide was the first challenge.  It is hidden in Safari under the Bookmarks tab and although you may never want to read the entire guide, it is a handy document that you can refer to if needed.

Below are some quick tips I found in the user guide along with some other tips I gathered in my travels.

  1. To quickly access your iPad controls, double-tap the Home button and then flick the bottom of the screen either to the left or to the right until you see the Controls dashboard.  You can then control the brightness of the screen, start playing your favorite tune from iTunes, control the volume and turn the mute on/off.
  2. When viewing maps you can quickly zoom in/out.  Double tap the screen once to zoom in and tap once with two fingers to zoom out.
  3. To zoom in/out on photos and web pages, double-tap to zoom in and double tap to zoom out.  (You can also continue to use the “pinch” method to zoom in or out. This is just a nifty alternative).  
  4. To quickly map out an address and get directions for one of your contacts, go to your contact list, locate your contact and double tap on the address. The iPad will display the Map application and also offer driving directions.
  5. Are you curious about traffic conditions?  Open Maps, tap the dog-eared page icon in the lower right corner of the iPad, and slide the Traffic overlay switch to On. Slide the page back and you can then view real-time traffic conditions (however, remember that you must be connected to the internet).  Green means traffic is going at the posted speed limit, yellow means traffic is slower than the posted speed limit, and red indicates that traffic is stop and go.
  6. ..and last but not least, for those of you wanting to take a shot of a specific screen, press the Home button and the sleep/wake button simultaneously!  The screenshot will automatically be saved in your photos.  You can then email the photo to yourself, save as a .jpg and manipulate the photo with Snagit or a similar tool.

Now if I could only figure out a quick swipe to get rid of all those annoying fingerprints on the screen.

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