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20 Secret iOS Shortcuts And Gestures You Probably Don’t Know

20 Secret iOS Shortcuts And Gestures You Probably Don’t Know

There are lots of awesome things about iPhones and iPads, and iOS aficionados can spend hours exploring Apple’s flagship devices. There are few things more interesting than playing around and using the unexpected shortcuts, especially after the additions in iOS 7. In fact, iOS 7 contains more shortcuts and quick-access features than any of its predecessors.

Master those gestures and you can use your fingertips to glance at your emails faster than before and navigate between your apps at a tremendous speed. And that’s just for starters.

Here are twenty iOS shortcuts and gestures that you were probably didn’t know about that will enable you to accomplish complex tasks speedily, and in style.

 

iOS shortcuts

    1. Move an Event in the Calendar in a Jiffy

    Did you know that events in your calendar can be changed or moved simply and quickly, just like the icons on your iPhone’s home screen? To do this, just tap and hold on to the event in day mode. You’ll see two dots that have appeared around the box. You can drag edges of this box up and down to make a change in the event duration. To move an event, just tap and drag the entire event.

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    2. Quick Access to Spotlight Search

    If you feel that Spotlight Search has disappeared from iOS 7, you’re wrong. It has just been integrated into every screen so that you can have easy access to this facility from just any home screen. All you need to do is touch anywhere on the home screen (not the top edge, which is reserved for Notification Center). Next, swipe down gently. The screen will drop down and the Spotlight field will reveal itself.

    3. Take a Sneak Peek at Recently Taken Pictures

    If you want to take a quick look at the pictures you have just taken, go to the camera app and simply slide the screen from left to right. The last picture taken will immediately pop up!

    4. Include More Emojis

    If you’re looking for ways to include more emojis into your texts within nanoseconds, there’s a way for that too. Open Settings, go to General and then to the keyboard. Add Emoji keyboard and you’re ready to use as many emojis as you want in your text. You can use the same settings to access keyboards in other languages.

    5. Use Your Ears to Open Siri

    This is certainly a rare gesture control! You can now open Siri without holding down the Home button. Open Settings, go to General and open Siri. You get an option of ‘Raise to Speak.’ Once you activate this option, the light sensor on the iPhone is set to work. Simply press the phone to your ears, and once the sensor detects your ears, Siri will open up.

    6. Scroll Up with the Menu Bar

    Scrolling up manually through the web pages is irritating. Now you can do so without using your hands–you can scroll up by using the menu bar. When you read an article or any other long text, then simply tap the menu bar present at the top of the screen. This will take you to the top of the web page or article. This feature works with most browsers and apps.

    7. A Quick Glance at Drafts

    Apple provides you with the ease of viewing your drafts from the Mail’s main menu. To get to your drafts within seconds, press and hold the ‘Compose’ button present in the bottom right-hand corner. This will immediately present the drafts folder and you can get back to complete those incomplete messages you left in a hurry.

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    8. iPad’s Split Keyboard for Typing Faster

    If typing on Apple’s tablet is troubling you, there is a more comfortable keyboard available for you. By holding down the keyboard key of iPad, you can split the keyboard apart. This way you can type easily with your thumbs, which is better for people who are accustomed to typing on Smartphones. In order to put the split keyboard in a convenient position, just drag the keyboard button upwards.

    9. Set Custom Vibrations

    Setting custom ringtones are known by everyone, but custom vibrations are a rare feature. Here’s how to do it. Open Settings > General > Accessibility. In Accessibility, you’ll find Hearing. Go here to turn on Custom Vibrations. After turning it on, navigate back to Settings and again open Sounds. At the bottom, you’ll find Vibration Patterns.

    Tap this option and customize vibrations at the bottom of the screen. Simply tap on the pattern you want. You can hold down your finger to get longer notes. Assign these customized vibrations to specific contacts.

    10. Swipe through Safari History

    The latest iOS 7 has bestowed Safari with a gesture-based navigation of its own. Simply swipe from left edge to the right and the screen goes back to previous page of browser history. Similarly, swipe the right edge to left and the screen will take you forward (if you’ve gone back to a previous page). These gestures come in quite handy in finding a particular web page, especially on a tablet or Smartphone.

    John.Karakatsanis
      11. Use Camera Flash for Alerts

      A great thing that iPhone users don’t know is that camera flash of their Smartphones can smartly be used for alerts, too. Here’s the way to set it. Navigate to Settings > General > Accessibility. There you’ll find Flash for Alerts. Slide on and the LED in your iPhone will start serving as alerting beacon.

      12. Sync Your Downloads

      Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all your downloaded files could be synced automatically across all your iOS devices? Rejoice! It is possible now. For music, apps and books, IOS 7 allows you to sync your downloaded files through Automatic Downloads. To do so, go to Settings and open Store. Here you can check Automatic Downloads option for any of the three, i.e. music, apps and books. After that, all your files will stay in harmony across all devices. Neat!

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      13. Quick Navigation of Home Screen and Multitasking Drawer

      Apple’s iPad consists of few gestures that enable users to navigate through the home screen easily and quickly.

      Pinch the screen with four fingers and you’ll get back to the home screen. You don’t even need to click the home button. To get to the multitasking interface, simply swipe, four fingers up. However, if these gestures don’t work on your iPad, then perhaps you need to turn them on. Go to Settings > General, and there you’ll find options for these gestures.

      14. Better Control Over Symbols and Letters

      Apple provides you a better and faster way to get capital letters, numbers, and special characters. Press the shift key and then, drag your finger to the desired letter. Similarly, you can get numbers too. First of all, press the number key and then drag it to the required number. Although you still have to use the number button and shift key, typing becomes much easier this way.

      For special characters, simply hold down on any keyboard button and you instantly get all the special characters for that letter. This even includes the ‘.com’ that appears by holding down period button in Safari.

      15. Keep an Eye on Storage

      You may get an application that is free of cost, but never one that doesn’t eat memory and space on your IOS device. If you are lacking storage, go straightaway to Settings > General > Usage and you’ll get to see a list of all your applications and which app is eating how much memory. This dissection of storage comes in highly useful when you’re trying to find some useless apps that you need to get rid of.

      16. Save Images Right from Websites

      If you’ve come across a beautiful image that you want as your wallpaper, put your finger on that image and hold it for a second or two. A menu slides from the bottom of the screen where you can find the Save Image option. That’s it. Simply save it and it is ready to adorn your iPhone’s or iPad’s screen. Besides Save Image, you also get an option for copying it to the clipboard.

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      17. Refresh by Simply Pulling Down

      Surprisingly, this gesture’s been around for quite some time, though some iOS users are still unaware of it. It’s a useful and easy shortcut to refresh–just pull down. Whether you’re looking at your Inbox or using an app, pull down the window and all contents of the page are refreshed. When you pull down, you will see an icon or arrow along the top that indicates that you’ve pulled far enough and now the page is refreshed.

      18. Shortcut to Phrases

      Avid SMS senders will love this one. It’s seriously irritating to type the same phrases several times every day. Now you can create shortcuts for such phrases. Open Settings > General > Keyboard. After you reach Keyboard, scroll down to find Shortcuts. Next, enter the phrase and a shortcut for the same. Next time you need to type the same message, simply type the shortcut and the phrase appears automatically. This gesture can also be extremely useful for texting numbers or email addresses and unwieldy chunks of text.

      19. Find the Meaning ASAP

      Some people just love to play with words and if you have a friend who keeps texting you with difficult-to-decipher messages, or you’re stuck with an unknown word while reading an eBook, then here’s how you can find word meanings ASAP. When you come across any such word, simply hold down on it. Select the option called Define, and you will discover the meaning!

      20. Browse Secretly

      If you want Safari to keep your information intact, then browse secretly. You can go incognito with Safari. Navigate to Settings > Safari, then click the button of Private Browsing. That’s it. Now you can browse secretly.

      If you have more interesting iOS shortcuts or gestures that you love, please feel free to share in the comments.

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      Last Updated on December 30, 2018

      18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2019 Updated)

      18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2019 Updated)

      No one can dispute the countless benefits technology has brought us. It’s undoubtedly allowed us to connect, perform, improve and leverage our resources beyond what was once imaginable.

      If you’re not taking advantage of one of the hundreds of time management apps and tools out there, you’re definitely missing a trick.

      But with so many apps to choose from, how do you know which ones to use? Well, this will depend on your needs, but we’ve put together a list of 18 of the very best time management apps that can help you with the most common time management challenges.

      Let’s dive straight into the list…

      1. Rescue Time — Use your time wisely

        If you have doubts that you’re using your time sensibly, this app will send you weekly reports to indicate what things are stealing your time. You may be shocked to discover how much time you’re actually wasting.

        Download Rescue Time

        2. Remember The Milk — Keep on top of all your tasks

          If you’re struggling to manage everything you have to do, and you work with many different devices, then this is the app for you. It’s a great free tool which is compatible with your mobile, computer, Gmail, Outlook, etc. It helps you to manage your tasks easily, and reminds you of them – wherever you are.

          Download Remember the Milk

          3. Focus Booster – Boost motivation to complete tasks

            This app is based on the principles of the Pomodoro Technique, and is aimed at individuals who procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by tasks. It’s designed to enhance your focus and remove any anxiety you might have with time pressures.

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            Download Focus Booster

            4. Toggl – Keep track of time spent on projects and tasks

              This is a great alternative to time-sheets, if you need to track how much time you spend on different projects. Effective time management starts with being clear on exactly how much time you actually spend on your projects and tasks, and then through analysis, working out how you can manage them more effectively.

              Download Toggl

              5. Dropbox — Store and send large files easily

                There are many apps that allow you to transfer content from your computer to other devices – but Dropbox is free and easier to use than the others. With the Dropbox app, you can even access and share important files on the go.

                Download Dropbox

                6. Evernote — Keep all your notes in one place

                  Evernote is a free productivity tool that allows you to capture all your ideas, thoughts and images in many different ways (e.g., with voice, notes or images).  You can even record your meetings, interviews, speeches and ideas, create lists, add voice or text attachments, and share your files with friends. You can also sync Remember The Milk with Evernote to really optimize your time.

                  Download Evernote

                  7. Mind42 — Focus on tasks at hand with mind mapping

                    Mind mapping is a great productivity technique, and Mind42 is the best free mind mapping app currently available. It helps you to become more organized by focusing your thoughts – thereby gaining clarity on what needs to be done.

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                    Download Mind42

                    8. SyncBackFree — Back up and sync your files effortlessly

                      This free software allows you to back up, restore and synchronize your files easily. It not only saves you time now – but also in the future. If you have never backed up your files before, you should definitely take a look at this pivotal tool.

                      Download SnycBackFree

                      9. MyLifeOrganized (MLO) — Manage your to-do lists effectively

                        Check this out if you find it difficult to manage all your tasks, to work with your to-do lists, and to organize your goals. This task management system helps you to target what you should be focusing on to reach your objectives. It automatically generates to-do lists, with priority actions for your immediate attention so that you can track your progress methodically.

                        Download MyLifeOrganized (MLO)

                        10. 1Password — Have all your passwords remembered

                          This app allows you to keep all your passwords in one encrypted database, protected by one password. This saves you time when you forget your passwords and need to retrieve them. It also allows you to use various passwords for different accounts so you don’t compromise on security.

                          Download 1Password

                          11. Pocket — Keep your eye on the ball

                            When you’re surfing the web, it’s easy to get distracted by enticing and fascinating websites. Use this tool to save your ‘finds’ to access and read later on at a convenient time which will not impact on your immediate work.

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                            Download Pocket

                            12. [email protected] — Boost your attention span

                              This amazing app combines neuroscience and music to boost your productivity. According to the developers, it’s possible to increase your attention span by up to 400%! Ideal for those who find it difficult to focus while studying, working or reading.

                              Download [email protected]

                              13. Launchy — Interact with your computer in a smart way

                                This small and simple tool allows you to launch your documents, project files, folders, and bookmarks with just a few keystrokes. This makes life so much easier as you don’t need to go through the start menu to access what you want.

                                Download Launchy

                                14. Forest — Boost your focus by growing a forest

                                  This unique and fun app helps you stay focused and on-track. The concept is simple: whenever you want to focus, plant a virtual tree. If you stay focused, the tree will grow. If you lose focus, the tree will die. As the app’s name implies, you can grow multiple trees to create a virtual forest!

                                  Download Forest

                                  15. Trello — Track your projects in a highly visual way

                                    This is a hugely popular app that you may already be familiar with. It works by allowing you to create cards for tasks that you need to complete. Each card moves across the Trello board (which is typically broken into columns such as To Do, In Progress, and Completed) as your start, work on and complete the associated task.

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                                    Download Trello

                                    16. Wunderlist — Digitalize your to-do lists

                                      Purchased by Microsoft in 2015, Wunderlist is an easy to use, feature-packed to-do list app. From planning a holiday, to sharing a shopping list with a partner, or managing multiple work projects, Wunderlist will keep you on top of all your tasks.

                                      Download Wunderlist

                                      17. TimeTree — Have a shared calendar with your family

                                        This app allows families or teams to share multiple calendars and appointments. So, whether you’re planning a party, or run a local sports team, Time Tree can keep everyone up-to-date with all current and upcoming activities and events.

                                        Download Time Tree

                                        18. Todoist — Capture and order all your tasks and activities easily

                                          Todoist is close to being the ultimate digital to-do list. It’s available via browsers and apps, and lets you schedule all your tasks and activities. Each item can be flagged for priority as well as given a due date. There is also a neat option to add notes to any of your tasks.

                                          Download Todoist

                                          The above list covers what we consider to be the very best time management apps and tools. And the good news is – that many of them are completely free of charge! So, what are you waiting for? Select the ones that will be the most valuable to you – and begin boosting your productivity now!

                                          Oh, and one more thing… Take a look at a couple of our other articles that will help further streamline your time management:

                                          40 Top Productivity Apps for iPhone and 20 Quick Tips For Better Time Management

                                          More Recommended Productivity Experts on Lifehack

                                          • Leon Ho — The Founder and CEO of Lifehack, which he share productivity hacks to make life easier
                                          • Carl Pullein — A renowned productivity and time management coach
                                          • Mark Pettit — A Business Coach for ambitious entrepreneurs who want to achieve more by working less

                                          Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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