iOS 6 Archive

How To Filter Your iMessage Alerts

iMessage, the free messaging service from Apple, has clearly been a game changer for Apple.  With some 500 billion of them sent world wide, it is clear iMessage is here to stay.  With all those message though it can be daughnting if you are getting them from people you know but you don’t have contacts information on.  Take for example someone you meet at a trade show or the like who ends up with your mobile number and send you an iMessage.

Fortunately Apple has a built-in filtering system for iMessage to prevent you from getting alerts on messages sent from

Filter who you see alerts from in iMessage

Filter who you see alerts from in iMessage

those not in your contacts.  It can help filter the important ones from the not-so-important ones.  Rest assured though that even if you turn on this filter, all your iMessages will still be in your Message box.  You just won’t get an alert.

To enable this filter, go into Settings>Notifications and scroll down until you find Messages in the list.  Tap on it then scroll down to towards the bottom where you will see a section Show iMessage Alerts From:  You have two options:  Everyone, which is the default, and My Contacts Only.  If you tap My Contacts Only you will only get alerts on your Lock Screen or Notification Center of iMessages that are sent from someone in your contacts.  Those who are not in your contacts simply get sent to your Messages app but do not alert you.

If you ever want to change it back to where you see every iMessage notification, simply move this setting back to Everyone.

This How To is applicable to iOS 6 and is for iPhone, iPad and iPad Mini as well as the iPod Touch.

For more How To’s here on AlliOSNews, visit the How To section using the menu at the top of the page or by visiting this link.

Apple posts article on Do Not Disturb issue with it being fixed on 7 January

Apple has released an acknowledgement that the sporadic issues with Do Not Disturb are legitimate and are being addressed.  On the Apple Support site yesterday, Apple posted article TS4510 which outlines the problem of Do Not Disturb mode staying on even after the scheduled time for it end has passed.  The resolution to the issue is interesting:

Do Not Disturb scheduling feature will resume normal functionality after January 7, 2013. Before this date, you should manually turn the Do Not Disturb feature on or off.

What makes this interesting is the “resume normal functionality” statement.  Does this mean that whatever this bug is, likely algorithm related, runs its course on 7 January and things return to normal?  Or does it mean that we can expect to see a hot patch of some sort for iOS 6 to resolve the issue on 7 January?  It really doesn’t matter but the blogosphere is alight with the idea that this will be a software patch – I’m not convinced yet. :-)

A deeper question – and I’d like to hear your thoughts – is why does Apple have a difficult time with the calendar rolling to a new year and Daylight Savings Time?  They have been plagued with issues related to one or the other or both in iOS 4, iOS 5 and now iOS 6.

You can read TS4510 here and remember to turn off DND manually between now and the 7th.

How To Activate Siri by holding your iPhone to your ear

I’m a big fan of Siri.  Although it is still technically a beta from Apple, Siri has grown by leaps this past year with the improvements and expanded abilities in iOS 6.  You can get anything from a stock quote to making a reservation at your local restaurant all with a tap-and-hold of the Home button on your iPhone 4S/5 or iPad 3rd/4th generation.  The tricky bit comes in when you need Siri and you are in a crowded, noisy location.  Sometimes Siri picks up the background noise, making it almost impossible to get it to understand what you are asking.  Fortunately there is a way to make it easier for Siri to understand you in these situations and in this How To I’ll show you how to enable the Raise to Speak function of Siri.

Like many things in iOS, this How To highlights a functionality that is already built in but is rarely used or mentioned – but there a lot of good nuggets of usefulness in iOS if you look around.  To enable Raise to Speak, go into the Settings of your

Enabling Raise to Speak on Siri

Enabling Raise to Speak on Siri

iPhone then go to General.  About midway down the list you will see Siri listed as the settings that you can adjust.  Tap on Siri and here you find all of the settings such as the language used, feedback of information and your personal information (so it can link it up in contacts).  The last setting is an on/off toggle for Raise to Speak.  Turn it on then tap the Home button to get back to your Home screen.  Now hold your iPhone up to your ear as if you are making a phone call.  Immediately you will hear to double-tone of Siri being activated.  Now you can speak to Siri just as if you are making a call.  When you pull your phone away from your ear, Siri deactivates.

Using Siri with the Raise to Speak feature enabled has dramatically improved the responsiveness of the service for me when I’m in a noisy situation such as in the middle of London, on a train, etc.  It still has a higher error rate than when I’m in a quite room but it is usable now where as in normal mode that was often not the case.  Your mileage will vary but give it a try and see if this mode works better for you in noisy places.

As a final point, you will not find this setting in iOS for iPad – it is an iPhone only functionality.  It does however work on both the iPhone 4S and 5 as both of those models have Siri enabled.

Let us know how this How To helps – leave a comment or follow us on Twitter or Facebook.



Scheduled Do Not Disturb Not Turning Off on Some iOS 6 Devices

There have been some reports via Twitter and a few other Apple centric sites this morning about a bug impacting scheduled Do Not Disturb and the rolling of the calendar to 2013.  I can report that I’ve seen the bug on my iPad (3rd Generation) but my Scheduled DND turned off as normal on my iPhone 5.

Take a look at this screen capture I made this morning from my iPad.  Note the scheduled DND is still enabled even though the time is past the scheduled end time of 08:00.  I had to manually turn of Do Not Disturb instead of it disablingDo Not Disturb Error 01 Jan 2013 itself automatically as it did throughout 2012.

The interesting thing is that I did not see this problem on my iPhone 5.  The Do Not Disturb is set up exactly the same way on it as it is on my iPad and it disabled itself as normal this morning.  Others have reported this being a problem on their iPhone 4S and 5 so it doesn’t seem to be isolated to just the iPad.  In other words, it could be the worst kind of bug:  No method to the madness.

I will update this post as I gather more information or if Apple releases any statement regarding this maybe-or-maybe not bug.

How To add a Shared List to Reminders in Mountain Lion

Whether it is a “Honey Do” list or a grocery list, couples always need to share tasks and lists with each other.  Fortunately for couples on Macs and/or iOS devices, doing so is quick and easy with the Reminders app.  The Reminders app is built into OS X Mountain Lion as well as iOS 5/6 for iPhone and iPad.  Through iCloud, any list you create is replicated to all of your devices and when you create a shared list, it is sent to those which you have designated to share the list with on their devices.

In this How To I show you how to create a list in Reminders in OS X then how to share it with others.

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Dropbox brings support for password protected Office files in latest update

This morning, Dropbox has released a minor update to their universal iPhone & iPad app but it brings a big new feature.  Now if you are running iOS 6 on your iPhone or iPad, you can now open password protected Microsoft Office files within the app.  This seems – to me at least – a feature a little more worthy of a minor dot release but Dropbox didn’t ask me so…

Version 1.5.7 is the updated version for those keeping score and it brings this new feature along with significantly improved video streaming in addition to the Office password protected files support.  For those of you who Italian and Iberian Spanish are your native tongue, the app is now localised for you.

Dropbox is a free app and is one of the handful of services that I simply couldn’t live without – and Dropbox has saved my bacon more than once when it comes to finding and recovering a file.  Pricing starts at $9.99 per month for 100GB of storage while a free account will bring you 2GB of storage.  You can sign up for Dropbox here.

Dropbox (Universal App) – Free – Download Now

Why iOS 6 Maps is my navigation app of choice

If there was one feature that was suppose to be “killer” in iOS 6, it was Maps.  Apple had turned away from Google Maps and developed their own solution and all of the hype leading up to the release of iOS 6 pointed to it being great.  The demos, after all, were awesome.

But as we all know by now, Maps was a flop.  A large flop.  So large in fact that it had a significant role in the dismissal of Scott Forstall from Apple.  Apple publically apologised for the Maps app, promising to double efforts to make it everything that it should have been from launch.  Requisitions on the Apple site indicate that Cupertino has and continues to look for mapping expertise to bring in house to help solve some of the issues.

So here we are, three months after launch.  Has Maps improved.  The answer, in my opinion, is a resounding yes.  So much so that it has become my sole navigation app on my iPhone 5.  Risky?  Some thing so but I’m not one of them and I’ll tell you why.

How To Change the Direction of Panorama Pictures on your iPhone 4S or 5

One of the exciting new features of the camera app that came in iOS 6 is Panoramic.  This mode, available on the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5, allow you to sweep your camera around you to capture a full length panoramic shot.  It works amazingly well with images having few of the traditional artefact problems that panoramic apps have with them.

Panoramic of Theatre Royal Windsor

Panoramic of Theatre Royal Windsor

By default Panoramic has you sweep your iPhone from left-to-right while you are capturing a photo.  This works well in almost every situation but others it will be easier and better to go from right-to-left.  Fortunately Apple has made it easy to do this straight from within the Camera app itself.

To get to Panoramic mode, open the Camera app then tap on Options.  You will see the Panoramic button there and tap it to go into Panoramic mode.  On screen you are shown instructions on what you need to do to capture the panoramic shot.  You will see that the arrow on the instructions are pointing from left-

Panorama Default Direction

Panorama Default Direction

to-right, indicating that is the direction you need to go in order to capture your shot.

Panorama alternate direction

Panorama alternate direction

To change the direction to right-to-left, simply tap the arrow.  Instantly you will see the instructions and indicator change to the right side of the screen.  Now you can start capturing your panoramic shot sweeping in the “reverse” direction.

When you close the Camera app and relaunch it, this function will go back to the default left-to-right.  There is no way to permanently change this within iOS (although I’m sure a jailbreak of some type likely does).

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Living with the iPhone 5 two months later

It has been two months since Apple released the iPhone 5 with much fanfare.  Lots of people have them now – some 8 million if the numbers are accurate – with many still waiting for shipments of the devices.  While supply has gotten a bit better, it is clear that this 6th generation iPhone is popular by any measure.

For those who have and the iPhone 5 for a while now, the shiny toy aspect of the device has faded a bit and now we are in the real practical use mode of the device.  So how is it stacking up?  Is the bang-to-hype ratio in line or completely out of whack?

American Airlines update brings improved Passbook and iPad support

American Airlines may be in financial straits but their iOS development keeps on working.  The airline has released a significant update to their Universal iOS app with some nice improvements and feature enhancements along with a shiny new icon.

The update, version 2.0 for those keeping score, brings a completely new look to the iPad version of the app and it fully supports screen rotations from portrait to landscape.  In previous versions this rotation worked… kinda.

The other big improvement is for iPhone users.  Now your boarding time, not just your departure time, appear on your electronic ticket in Passbook.  This will give you the time that you need to be at the gate without having to go into the actual app itself.

There are other minor enhancements and improvements to the app and American has even thrown in an offline trivia game that can be played on the iPad while you are in flight.

The American Airlines app is free.  Registration into the AAdvantage Frequent Flyer program is required for some features which is also free.

American Airlines (Universal App) – Free – Download Now