iPhone Life magazine

Expert Blogs

How To Use Game Center

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My grandmother lives in a retirement community, and several times a week she heads up to the social center and plays cards and other games with her friends. For the rest of us, most of our gaming entertainment comes from an interactive screen. Our iDevices provide that entertainment and Game Center ties it all together.



Tip of the Day: Turn on Private Browsing in Safari

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We all have our reasons for wanting to browse the web privately occasionally. And I think we can all agree that we'd rather not know each other's reasons. Here's how you can keep your web browsing history private:



Tip of the Day: Shake to Undo

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When Autocorrect fails you or a message arrives that renders the lengthy epistle you just typed irrelevant, you can easily delete entire messages or emails.



Tip of the Day: Calculate Your Tip with Siri

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If you can't figure out a basic 20 percent tip at a restaurant (take 10 percent and add it to itself. Be generous and always round up) then you might want to revisit your elementary math skills. If you think tipping is optional then you need to revisit your basic being-a-decent-human-being skills and also, read this.

However there are times, such as at the end of a long dinner with a large group of friends, when figuring out a tip requires more advanced math skills or sobriety than you currently have. In these situations, Siri can do the math for you.



How-To Use iCloud

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iCloud, just like the name sounds, is cloud storage for your iDevice. This means that you can access your music, photos, contacts, and calendars on all of your devices, even if the content is not stored on your iDevice.



Tip of the Day: How to Take Selfies

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Yulia Mayorova/Shutterstock

Let's be honest. Most of us use our iPhone camera for just three things: taking pictures of our cute kids to share on social media, taking pictures of our food to share on social media, and taking selfies to share on social media. But sometimes trying to look cool while simultaneously tapping the shutter button on your screen can just end with you looking awkward. Here's a very basic tip that a surprising number of people don't know:



Tip of the Day: Share Your Photos with Non-iUsers

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Photo Stream lets you see all your images on every iDevice you own and it lets you share pictures and videos with your friends and family. But what about sharing photos with friends and family who don't (gasp!) use an iDevice?

It's OK, every family has one or two deluded souls like this. And the good news is you can still share that video of Junior's 5th grade play with them.



Unleash Your Inner App Developer Part 39: 7 Steps to Being a Better App Developer

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Do you have an idea for an app but lack the programming knowledge to begin building it? In this weekly blog series, I will take you, the beginner app developer, step by step through the process of creating apps for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Join me each week on this adventure and you will experience how much fun turning your ideas into reality can be! This is part 39 of the series. If you are just getting started, check out the beginning of the series here

Are you proud of the code that you write? Are you using a set of best practices that allows you to develop well-designed, stable apps that can adapt to change?



Tip of the Day: Siri Will Get You There Faster

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According to a survey by Intelligent Voice last fall, only 15 percent of iPhone users have used Siri in iOS7. If you're not already using Siri regularly, you should be. Why? Because Siri makes doing certain things on your iDevice so much faster.

For example, many of iPhone Life's Tips of the Day start by saying something like "Go to Settings>General>Accessibility." This requires you to open and scroll through two different menus. With Siri, all you have to do is say, "Siri, open Accessibility Settings." or Message Settings or Privacy Settings, you get the idea.

Other things that are much faster with Siri include:



Tip of the Day: Make Text Larger & Easier to Read

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Image copyright Goodluz, Shutterstock, Inc.

If your eyesight isn't what it used to be, you may find the small text on your iPhone or iPad hard to read. But there's no need to strain your eyes. And fortunately for you, I got my first pair of glasses at age six, so I'm way ahead of you on this being blind thing. Here are several tricks I use to make reading on an iPhone or iPad easier on the eyes:



Tip of the Day: Create Customized Vibration Patterns

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If you find yourself checking your phone every time any phone in your vicinity vibrates, it may be time to create a custom vibration pattern to set your iPhone's ringtone apart from the pack.



Tip of the Day: Use Siri to Get Directions from Google Maps

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Apple Maps has improved a lot since its disastrous debut. But many people still prefer to use Google Maps as their go-to navigation app. The problem is, when you ask Siri for directions, it'll automatically use Apple Maps as the default app for turn-by-turn directions. If you want to use Google Maps or some other navigation app with Siri instead, try this handy trick:



Tip of the Day: Use Your LED Flashlight for Alerts

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I frequently turn my phone on silent while I'm at work and then forget to turn silent mode off when I get home. If this is also you, or if you have a hard time hearing your alerts, you may want to set your LED flashlight to light up every time a new message or alert comes in. 



Tip of the Day: Emoji Shortcuts

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A couple of weeks ago we covered creating keyboard shortcuts to help you type commonly used phrases quickly. Did you know that you can also create shortcuts for emoji characters (those cute emoticons that go way beyond your average smiley face)? This is really handy if you use a lot of emoji characters and don't want to switch back and forth between keyboards all the time.

Before you can do this, you'll have to enable the emoji keyboard if you haven't already:



Tip of the Day: Choose from New Siri Voice Options

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Although I suspect most people still use the original female Siri voice, you've had the option for a while now of changing the gender or the accent. And now the latest update to iOS 7.1 offers more natural-sounding UK and Australian English voices in both genders, so if you haven't played around with Siri's voice, this might be a fun time to try it. 



Tip of the Day: Look Up Definitions in Safari and Mail

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One of my favorite things about reading ebooks (besides the fact that I no longer have to figure out how to fit 10 books in my carry on) is how easy it is to look up the definition of a word and then get right back to reading. No more encountering a word whose meaning I'm not sure of, realizing my dictionary is on the shelf all the way downstairs, and deciding I don't really need to know what that word means after all. (I stopped pretending to myself that I would look the word up later years ago.)

But did you know you can also look up words in Mail and Safari?



How to Add Calendar Events

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The Calendar app on your iDevice can help keep your life organized. It can even be synced among all your devices using iCloud. You also have a choice to use separate calendars, such as one for work and one for home. When you add an event to your calendar it is automatically placed in the default calendar set up on your iDevice.

Here I'll show you how to create events, add details, and, if you choose, place them in separate calendars.



How to Master "Silhouettes" with Your iPhone

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Hello friends and fellow iphoneographers. In this post I will be teaching you tips and tricks for capturing fantastic silhouette shots. For starters, you can use many different subjects for your silhouette shots. This includes people, birds, trees, or any object that would form a great silhouette. You always want to make sure your subject is in front of the lighting you choose to use. I find the best silhouettes are captured using natural light in the background. Sunrises and sunsets are my personal favorite backgrounds for capturing fantastic silhouette shots. I believe you can never go wrong using one of these as your backdrop. 



Tip of the Day: Let Siri Help You Decide Where to Eat

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You know you want to eat out tonight and you know what time you want to eat. The problem is deciding where to eat. Siri can help you with that.



How To Redeem a Promocode on your iPhone

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Believe it or not some people have no idea how to redeem a promo code on their iPhone. I give away quite a few promo codes that developers have passed on to me and a lot of times I get the question, "how do I redeem this?" The majority of the time, people don't want to redeem codes from iTunes on their computer, simply because once they redeem the code, they will have to sync their devices to get the app. In this article I will go through the simple steps of redeeming a promo code directly from your iPhone. The same steps can be use to redeem codes from your iPad or iPod Touch. Once you go through the steps you will see just how easy it is.



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