Handy iPhone tips

I read the basics when I bought the device, but I’m sure there are a ton of great features that I know nothing about. For example, for starters. . .

I’ve been annoyed occasionaly when I put the phone in my pocket to discover I inadvertenly pushed buttons on it and it’s filming inside my pockets or making calls, etc. So I google just now and found the solution is simple. On the top right of the phone, not top right of the screen, but top right of the entire phone, there’s a little button (the website said it’s black, but on my phone it’s silver). Push that button and it will turn off the screen and lock the phone, but the phone will still receive messages and phone calls in that state. When you want to unlock, just press that again. :slight_smile:

Here’s a similar tip for another, related problem I’ve encountered. I haven’t tried this yet, so I hope it works. Are they talking about the same button – on the very top, beside the silver strip?

[quote]Most iPhone users have probably experienced the annoyance, or even occasional embarrassment, of their cheek hitting the iPhone’s “end call” button and accidentally hanging up on the person they’re talking to.

There’s an easy way to avoid this, though: Lock the screen.

When your call has started and you’re talking to someone, just click the iPhone’s hold button at the top right of the phone. This will lock your phone but will not end your call.

Now, your cheek can’t end your call. When you’re ready to hand up, just unlock the screen by using the onscreen unlock slider and tap “end call.” Problem solved.[/quote]

MT, yes they are talking about the same button - it’s called the Hold or Power button, while the one on the bottom of the screen is called the Home button.

The tip you quoted is a strange one, since the iPhone has a sensor that should automatically turn off the screen when you put it up to your cheek!

Here’s a tip that I find very useful, that I didn’t know about:

In most apps that feature long scroll windows, you can quickly scroll back to the top by pressing the status bar (the bar that shows the time and battery life).

some off the top of my head:

to take a screen shot press the power button plus the home button at the same time.

go into settings -> general -> home and map the double-click home key to the photo app. by default its mapped to search which is stupid because you can get there from any location on the phone by simply hitting home once (starting from home screen 1), twice (starting from home screen >1) or three times (starting from in an app) at a slower pace than double click. you will be grateful for his setting later when you want to quickly take a picture or video. this allowed me to get this video of an eagle flying around hong kong bay: youtube.com/watch?v=36v4V3_pHfQ (at the wrong orientation, lol so decided to zoom in a bit before upload).

while you are in the settings, you may as well go ahead and turn on the ipod controls when playing. this allows you to control playback without unlocking the phone in the case where you are using a non-stock headset.

if it totally locks up, reset by holding the power button and the home button at the same time until the screen turns off and you see an apple. this is the equivalent of ctl-alt-del.

organize your most used icons in the corners of the home screens. that way you can hit them without really looking. if you categorize them and put the most used icons this way, you can get to your most used apps with muscle memory alone - which is almost as good as having a hardkey for each of those apps (for example: the adobe ideas app for me is home if not home already, swipe once, upper_right)

the camera is easy to trick into being a mini-manual camera. if the scene is too dark or light, tap on an object in the scene that you want to optimize. then tap the picture button. if that doesn’t work, tap on an opposite object (eg: light vs dark, far vs close). tapping in between the objects will make it use an in between setting. if you are taking a shot where things are moving, you can to an extent trick it into changing the exposure time by clicking on moving vs not moving objects.

the easiest way to keep an iphone (or any cam) steady if you are taking say night shots is to rest it on something. if that isn’t possible, jam your elbows into your rib area and lock your legs. then put your fingers together behind the phone and apply light pressure as if you are trying to bend the phone. your free right thumb takes the shot. the opposing forces will stabilize it better than if you were trying to hold it in front of you with arms straight, for example.

the camera is really fast at taking shots (vs say a droid, which takes forever to take a shot) so you can more easily take timing critical action shots. if you REALLY have only one take at it (eg: basejumping off 101 or something) you can get a lower quality action pic (good enough to post on facebook) by first taking a video, going to that frame in the playback and taking a screenshot using the method above.

you can crop any video you take to your desired length in the playback app before uploading it.

copying then pasting a picture to e-mail vs the e-mail picture button works differently. copy keeps the picture at full resolution when e-mailed. sending using the phone app directly cuts the resolution.

if you are really really low on power (say 5% or less) and need to use the phone later, resist the temptation to turn it off. if it is this low, it won’t turn itself back on most of time. if you leave it in standby, it will last the few hours until you can get to a charge point.

I have two iPhone tech issues I was hoping someone could answer.

  1. Recently I’ve been unable to email photos or videos from my phone. I can send ordinary emails, but if a photo or video is attached I’ll get a message saying “copy of the email is placed in your outbox. The recipient, ___@.com was rejected by the server”, even though I am certain the address is correct. At first I thought maybe the photo/video was too large, but that doesn’t appear to be the problem, because I’ll get that message even if I try to send just one photo on the small size setting. It doesn’t just take a while to send; it won’t send at all, and eventually I have to delete the attempted email. Any idea how to fix it?

  2. My wife wants an iPhone but she wants my 3GS, so she wants me to buy an iPhone 4 and transfer all of my applications, contacts, emails, photos (ie., everything) from the 3GS to the new 4, then clear out the 3GS for her. Anyone know if that’s possible.

As for “handy iPhone tips”, this may not be rocket science (in fact, I expect some techies may laugh at it for being stupid), but it appears to work for me. If I’m in an area with poor reception and I’m trying to upload a video, or send an email with attachment, or go to a difficult site, so it’s straining the iPhone to the point that the reception dies completely and it might otherwise be difficult reconnecting (by going to Settings and clicking on Carrier), I will first go to Settings and put the device on Airplane Mode, which I understand stops those efforts it was making that were causing the problem, then after a moment I’ll turn Airplane Mode back off and click on Carrier for better success.

Possible, and easy. Lucky bugger.

Possible, and easy. Lucky bugger.[/quote]
Yup, just make sure you backup all your 3GS data to iTunes by plugging it in and syncing. Then plug in your new iPhone. You will see a Restore button there. Just choose the last backup time and voila, all your data and settings will be transferred to the new phone within minutes. After that, go into your 3GS Settings / General / Reset and choose “Erase All Content and Settings”.

By the way, if your devices all share the same iTunes account, then you only need to purchase an app once, and you can then choose which devices to load it onto. Pretty cool!

Thanks guys. That’s good to know. Personally, I don’t know the difference between 3GS adn 4, and I’m perfectly happy with my phone, so I had no desire for the 4, but if that’s what my wife wants. . . well, she’s the boss.

As for my first question re recipient rejected. I think I just solved it. I went to Settings > Mail contacts calendars > my account > SMTP > and found my username and password were missing, so I entered them and it seems to work now. Actually, I recall having to do the same thing a year or so ago. Not sure why they the username and password would have been removed, but. . . well, it seems ok now. :slight_smile:

Not everyone is pleased with the reception of ChungHwa Iphone 3GS. This mini celebrity paid for 2 years subscription in advance but can not get a signal anywhere in her house.

youtube.com/watch?v=yYKaFPwc … re=channel

In day-to-day use, the main thing is that your eyes will thank you profusely. You’ll see what I mean after you’ve used the 4 for a few days then look at the 3GS again.

Ok, a couple of questions concerning multiple iPhones in a single household.

My wife bought an iPhone 4, gave it to me, I synced my old 3GS on the computer and loaded everything onto my new 4, no problem. So I’m all set.

Then my wife brought the old 3GS into the shop and they removed all my stuff from it and installed her contacts from her non-iPhone. Great.

But last night we ran into problems when trying to install apps on the 3GS (that used to be mine) for her. A pop up appeared, saying she needed to enter her Apple ID and password. It asked if she wanted to input the existing ID or create a new one, so she said create a new one, and it then sent a message to her email address that she needed to click on to “verify” the ID and password. But the message she received at her email address said, “Dear Mother Theresa, please click below to verify your new ID and password.”

We didn’t click it because it said my name, not hers. We were afraid it is not giving her a NEW account, but is only changing the ID and password on MY Apple account. We don’t want to do that. We want to create a new, separate account for her.

I’m not sure how it knew my name when she asked to create a new account to be sent to her email address. Perhaps because she tried using MY credit card in that process (I know, that probably won’t work, because the name of the card must match, but we were afraid her Taiwan credit cards wouldn’t work). Or, perhaps the device, the 3GS phone that used to belong to me, still remembers that it was my phone with my ID. If so, how do we change that to set it up for a completely new user? Surely that must be possible, since iPhone owners surely transfer ownership all the time.

Second, assuming we can do that – get a new separate Apple account for her on my old phone, so each of us has a separate iPhone with a separate account – will it be possible for us to each sync our separate phones on the same computer, in two separate computer sync locations, so we don’t each take turns screwing up the sync of the other?

Keep one account. This effectively lets you replicate your app and song/video purchases to all the iDevices in your household. If you’re OK with paying twice for the apps and songs/videos to get two accounts, by all means, go for it.

If you want to sync contacts separately, use GMail to sync the contacts and not the computer. This allows you to have multiple contacts, calendars, etc. per phone while being able to replicate your apps and media purchases across the phones. Moving as much stuff as you can “to the cloud” makes all the migration scenarios much much easier.

Cool. Thanks. Now I guess my next step is to look into how I can use GMail to sync contacts (and presumably to transfer photos from the iPhone to the computer and other syncing tasks). I shall google that later today. :slight_smile:

Photos are also a bit tricky given the need for iTunes to edit photo albums. I use a jailbreak app called PhotoAlbums+ to do this so I can avoid needing a tether to the PC.

I use DropBox for photo sync to the desktop. Some people like to use Picasa or Flickr for this. For transfer of photos between iPhones, iPads, I use Bump.

The point is take the computer out of the loop as much as you can. Ideally, other than the initial activation, we should never have to connect our phones to a computer. They ARE the computer. Androids work this way (never needs to be connected to a PC), and I believe they are thus farther ahead of the game in this regard.


Don’t know what happened. As of this weekend I can no longer update my NY Times app. The “latest news” was last updated Jan 14, and it says “Downloading latest news” at the bottom of the screen and has the blue line that appears when it’s updating, but that blue line just remains there continuously, it doesn’t update at all, just sucks the juice from the battery and does nothing until the screen goes dark from lack of activity or the internet connection gradually fades till it’s disconnected and I have to go to Settings and reconnect.

And, I’ve got the same problem with another publication app (ABA Journal) that is supposed to be updated daily.

I thought maybe I needed to go to the App Store and update those two apps, but it doesn’t indicate that they need updating.

And, I synced my phone on the computer just now, hoping that might resolve it, but it didn’t. Any ideas? It’s an iPhone 4. I’ve also only had this phone for a week or two, so apparently some connection has come undone and I need to reenter a password, or something is my guess. (For example, if I go to Settings>Network>Cellular Data Network, should those usernames and passwords be filled out? They’re not and I’m not sure I know my usernames and passerwords for there.)

Sounds like an internet problem. There are 2 ways to have internet on your phone - WiFi or 3G. If you’re in a WiFi zone and you have connected your phone to that network before, then the WiFi connection will take over. If there is no established WiFi, then 3G should take over (if it has been set up properly). When the 3G connection is on, you will see a little 3G symbol on the status bar. Otherwise you will see the WiFi symbol to the right of the carrier. It looks like this:

So the first test is to make sure the symbols for both connections are showing properly.
If they are, go to the Safari browser and type any website and see if that works. If it doesn’t, you will get a message saying your internet connection is not working.

Thanks. I’m sure you are correct. I thought I was connected just fine because I can see the symbol in the top left for signal strength and I received an email just this morning. Aha! But I can’t send emails. They remain in the outbox. And, as I said, my NYT won’t update. And, this is one of disturbing messages I keep receiving.

So i go to Settings>General>Network>Cellular Data Network and click on Reset Settings, it asks “are you sure you wish to reset all network related settings to their original values?” So I click reset. But, the problem persists.

And I started creating a custom APN as instructed here (not completely sure if that’s a good thing to do or a bad thing and not even knowing what an APN is or why I should want a custom one.
iphonedownloadblog.com/2009/ … a-service/

But, argggghhhhh, still not working. May stop at the iphone store after work today. :eh:

Have you tried taking the SIM card out and cleaning the electrical contacts on it? Try that. Turn phone off first. Just rub the contacts with a dry cloth. I’ve had that problem before with a different phone.

Good luck, if all else fails, I can trade my 3gs for your iphone 4. The internet works on mine. :wink:

PS: My 3gs had this problem on a few occasions, too. The internet just stops working. Just rebooting the phone fixed it every time for me.

Hey, thanks. I just rebooted (hadn’t thought of that) and – voila – it seems to be working fine. I did install usernames and passwords at the pop address places, where I think they may have been lacking, but I hadn’t rebooted and apparently that may have been needed. So, sorry, looks like maybe I won’t trade my 4 for your 3. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

[quote=“Mother Theresa”] I hadn’t rebooted and apparently that may have been needed. So, sorry, looks like maybe I won’t trade my 4 for your 3. Thanks for the suggestion, though.[/quote]It was worth a try. :wink:

A rule of thumb with the iphone is, if something isn’t working, reboot. I’ve had multiple malfunctions (mostly apps) and rebooting often fixes it. :2cents:

Next time it happens just toggle Flight mode on then off again and internet will work. Much faster than rebooting.