I was on the road for a bit the other day, and when I left home at noon, my iPhone's battery was about 95% full. About 4 hours later, I saw it was down to about 25%, and I wondered what it could have been doing to deplete the battery so much. I thought of the usual culprits, like brightness (it's not at the maximum), Bluetooth (it seems well behaved with iOS 6, going in standby mode when not in use), or push email. Then I looked at which apps were open. I quit them all, including Skype. An hour later, my battery had only dropped another 5%.
When I came home, I did some googling, thinking it could be Skype, or it could be another app. I came across a Skype forum post where someone said they lost 70% in four hours, just like me. There were no other apps running that would have been keeping a connection open, so it's safe to say - given the vast number of people who have commented on the relationship between Skype and poor battery life - that there is a link.
So, if you use Skype, and see bad battery life on your iPhone, try quitting the app and see if this improves things. I haven't done any scientific testing, but there seem to be enough people who have this problem to suggest that Skype may be the culprit.
Sometimes when calling other countries, I have trouble getting through. For some reason, my phone provider seems to not like numbers with the 00 prefix (the international access code from France), though I never have problems with numbers beginning with + saved in my Contacts.
Rob Griffiths, during a chat the other day, found that if you press and hold the 0 button on the number pad, it types a + character. So to make an international call, all I need to do is press that button, then enter the country code and the number. This will make my international calls a bit easier, at least for people who are not contacts, and who I don't want to make contact cards for.
It's worth noting that pressing any of the other keys, the ones that show letters, such as ABC, only types the number. I guess the fact that the + is on the 0 button makes one think there's a way to get it to display; I had tried in the past, but didn't hold it long enough.
You can add a photo or a video to an email message in iOS Mail without gong to the Photos app, though it's not very obvious how to do this.
While composing your email:
1. Tap on your email and hold until the "Select, Select All, Paste" menu displays.
2. Tap the arrow button at the right of this menu.
3. Tap Insert Photo or Video.
4. Select the photo or video you want to embed.
[kirkmc adds: I'm sure plenty of you know this, but I certainly didn't. A little curiosity would have found it, but I never tapped on that arrow button.]
Accessing your saved email drafts can be challenging when you have multiple email accounts on your iOS device. Here's a shortcut though to help save you some time.
1. Launch the Mail app.
2. Tap and hold the compose icon at the bottom right of the screen.
3. You will see a Drafts screen, where you can either compose a new message or continue editing saved drafts.
I keep all the apps I use regularly on my iOS devices in the Dock or on the home screens, but I have dozens of less-commonly used apps in folders. I often forget which folder some apps are in, even though my folders are labeled clearly. To find which folder an app is in, swipe right to display the Spotlight search screen, then type a few letters of the app's name. The app will display in the list, and to the right of its name will be the folder it's in. Next time, maybe you'll remember which folder to look in, which, for me at least, is quicker than typing in the search field.
Up until iOS 6, there was no way to remove e-mails from the "recently contacted" list when you start typing new e-mails, even if that person wasn't in your Contacts. Now, you can remove them one at a time, provided they are not in your Contacts.
All you do is start typing the e-mail address, and then when the list of addresses starts to populate the screen, scroll down to the address you wish to delete. It will have a blue arrow pointing to the right. When you tap on that arrow, you'll see a Remove From Recents button; tap that to remove that e-mail address from the recent e-mail list.
[kirkmc adds: I don't know if this is new in iOS 6, because I never really paid attention to it. What I notice is most of the addresses I see are addresses I've used on my Mac, not on my iOS devices. So, I went into Mail > Window > Previous Recipients, and deleted all those who weren't in my Contacts, and the next time I synced my iPhone, those extra addresses were gone.
Note that I sync e-mail accounts via iTunes (Info tab > Sync Mail Accounts); if you have only set up your accounts on an iOS device, and don't sync, then this my work differently. Can anyone post in the comments if they do it differently, and if e-mail addresses get deleted after removing them in Mail?]
If you, like me, have suffered an undesired in-app purchase there is a solution. Apple used to require the password to be entered every time there was a purchase involved. On the iOS 6, however, if you happen to have entered the password, such as to download a free App, watch out. During the next 15 minutes, if your kid happens to play one of those nasty games that keeps prompting for a in-app purchase they can do it without entering a password!
The solution is easy although a little inconvenient. You can turn on restrictions and make sure that the password is always asked for instead of lasting for 15 minutes.
To do this, go to Settings > Restrictions > Require Password and set it to Immediately. (There are only two choices: the default 15 minutes and immediately.) The drawback is that if you want to download a few apps in a row that are free you must always enter the password.
With iOS 6, you can now add different signatures for different e-mail accounts, but you can also add logos, links and styled text.
If you have an HTML or styled signature in Mail on OS X, do the following:
1. Send an e-mail to your account with the signature from OS X.
2. Open the e-mail on your iOS device, then tap and hold the signature text.
3. Select all the text and images of your signature, and then copy it.
4. Go to Settings > Mail, contacts and Calendars > Signature. In the text field, tap and hold again to display the Paste menu and paste your signature.
Only styled text (bold, italic or underlined), plus images and links will be copied. Text colors or font sizes will not.
[kirkmc adds: We had a hint giving a much more complex way of doing this back in April. This is very easy to do, requires no third-party software or futzing around with backups. Though, to be fair, think carefully if you really need images and logos in your e-mail signature…]
I've recently needed to fill in an e-mail address in Safari on my iPad for a number of sites. I have multiple e-mail addresses and they're not trivial to type. I kept thinking "why doesn't Safari let me pick one of my addresses to fill in here?" While I couldn't find a way to make that happen, I realized I could do this by creating shortcuts for my commonly used email addresses and get a very similar result.
To do this, go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Shortcuts. Tap on Add New Shortcut, enter a "phrase" - this can be a single word, an e-mail address or a longer text - then enter a shortcut. For example, to enter firstname.lastname@example.org, enter a shortcut such as "myn."
[kirkmc adds: I've been using shortcuts for some user names that aren't e-mail addresses, since I generally use the same address on most websites, but this is a good way of easily entering any kind of text. If you don't know about them, you should.
One interesting thing to point out: shortcuts sync across devices via iCloud, as long as you have Documents & Data syncing turned on in the iCloud settings. So set up a bunch of shortcuts on one device and they'll propagate to others.]
Following yesterday's hint about fixing an iOS device that wouldn't launch third-party apps, I realized that it would be useful to back up my iPhone via iCloud, in case I have a problem away from home. I looked around, and saw that we don't have anything about this on the site, so I thought I'd write a brief primer.
You can turn on iCloud backups in iTunes: connect your iOS device, then, on the Summary tab, in the Backups section, click on Back Up to iCloud. However, when you sync your device, it won't back up to iCloud. The only away for this to happen is, according to Apple, when a device is connected to the Internet via Wi-Fi, connected to a power source, and has its screen locked. And, this only happens once a day.
However, you can force a first iCloud backup on the device by going to Settings > iCloud > Storage & Backup, then tapping on Back Up Now. (You can also turn on or off iCloud backups here; this has the same effect as the iTunes setting.)
It's worth noting exactly what gets backed up to iCloud. Apple has a technical document explaining this in detail. Note that iCloud backups don't back up content synced via iTunes: music, movies and TV shows not purchased from the iTunes store; podcasts; audiobooks; and photos synced from your Mac. However, any purchased content is backed up (technically, it's just a list of the content), and this content isn't counted against your iCloud storage quota. What will take up the most space in your iCloud backup is photos and videos on your device, so if you're tight on space, think of downloading these to your computer, or uploading them to some other storage service.