Saving some memory in iOS 8

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 7.27.21 AMSaving memory is a big issue for some people, especially if you have a 16GB phone. Memory gets eaten up by all kinds of things.

One of those “things” is the collection of photo-messages, video-messages and voice messages that you acquire over time.

I never realized this until doing the research for this post, but apparently your messages are saved for… well….. forever. :shock: (that’s a long time!)
And if you get a lot of pictures, etc, via the messaging app, your memory could be taking a serious hit.

iOS8 gives us the opportunity to have a little control over that.

Here is how to make your own choice about message-saving:

Go to Settings > Messages

Slide down, and you will see a place for “message history.” The default is to keep messages FOREVER.

From Skitch

Tap on “forever” and you will be given two additional choices: 30 days or 1 year.

From Skitch

By nixing the “forever” choice, you’ll be saving memory that would otherwise be lost. Every little bit helps!

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Is Your Blog Snowing?

Screen Shot 2014-12-02 at 6.47.28 AMIf you have added snow to your Blog here on WordPress anytime in the past, you might have noticed that WordPress remembered this …. and it has recently started snowing on your blog without you doing a thing to get it going.

And if you leave it alone, it will automatically stop on January 4.

If you are new to WordPress and you would like to make it snow on your blog, here is what you do:

Go to Settings > General and scroll ALL the way down to the bottom. There you will find the box that you can check to make it snow on your blog (or UNcheck if you do not want the snow).

This snow is harmless. It won’t accumulate, and you don’t have to shovel it. :)

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Saving Favorites in Safari with iOS 8

Screen Shot 2014-11-20 at 7.07.56 PM Safari changed a bit in iOS7 and a bit more in iOS8. Not a lot, but enough to mention, here.

When you bring up a web page on Safari, and you would like to save it as a favorite, there is a really easy (visual) way to do this…… but it’s kind of hidden.

So let’s go and find it. :)

Let’s start by using Safari to bring up a website that you would like to save.

Here I have summoned the website for one of my favorite podcasts, A Way with Words.


To save it as a favorite, just touch the search bar, again. Suddenly, you will see several “squares” representing the websites that your iPhone thought you might like favorited, like Disney and ESPN.


Now, pull DOWN on the page. Two hidden buttons appear, “Add to Favorites” and “Request Desktop Site.”


Tap on “Add to Favorites” and your website will be saved with its own little square icon, as you can see, here.


(The other option allows you to view the regular desktop site instead of the abbreviated mobile one.)

If you need to delete a “Favorite” in the future (or delete the “favorites” that Apple chose for you), just tap and hold a square. “Delete” will appear above the square as an action-option. Now touch “delete” and the square-favorite vanishes. Poof! Gone!

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Weekend Distraction: My New iPhone 6

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Thanks, Linda, for this great cartoon!! :)

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A Quick Post about Quick Reply in iOS8

If a text appears at the top of your device while you are involved with something else, you no longer have to leave whatever-you-are-doing to head over to messages to answer it.

When the text comes in, just pull it down.

You’ll have the opportunity to reply right then and there, and then go back to doing whatever it was that you were doing.

From Skitch-25

From Skitch-24

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Real Time Dictation in iOS8

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 7.47.05 AMThis was a pleasant surprise.

Before iOS8, I would dictate notes, emails and text messages, BUT this process often resulted in frustration for me.

I could dictate, but after every few sentences I would have to click on “done” in order for the dictation-gremlins to catch up. And then I would proof-read to fix errors. I used it, but it was buggy.

iOS8 has changed this …. significantly for the better.

Now, when you dictate, you will see your words appear as you speak them. Now you can speak your entire text, and not have to hit ‘done’ until you actually are (done!).

For those who are new to the iPhone/iPad, or for those who have never used dictation before, here is …..

How to dictate text in iOS 8:

Tap the spot where you plan to type (in notes, email, texts, etc) and a keyboard will appear.

Touch the microphone that is next to the space bar.

From Skitch-22

Start talking. Speak clearly and watch your words appear as you talk.

When you are done, (REALLY done) hit “done.” :)


MUCH better. I’ll now be doing a whole lot more talking-to-text rather than finger tapping the keyboard.
(however……. typing on the iPhone 6 Plus is a WHOLE lot easier with the bigger everything keyboard!)

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iOS 8 will now SLOWLY come to this blog

Screen Shot 2014-10-14 at 8.24.52 AMReminder: This is a blog for EVERYDAY people. If you are a tech-person or have advanced skills, you are in the wrong place.

I find that when I read tech blogs or articles they are often filled with lots of things I don’t understand or need, and I have to sift down to get to the nitty gritty (dating myself with that term!). :shock: Often there is a nugget of precious info that can help me enjoy this word of tech-wonder, but I have to look for it.

Or …… sometimes info on a tech blog can be simply overwhelming with too much information. Too too too much at once. If I see too much at once, it jumbles together. That won’t happen here.

So, I am taking this opportunity to remind you that I GO SLOWLY.

I have placed a special link to an “iOS 8” page up at the top of this blog.

I will GRADUALLY start exploring iOS 8 features one at a time. And as I do, I will group them on that page, above.

One at a time. Slowly. Step by step. Bit by bit.

This approach helps this regular person understand what she’s learning, and I hope it helps you, too.

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My thoughts after 24 hours with my iPhone 6+

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 7.44.17 PMSo it’s been 24 hours since I have started using the iPhone 6+ as my phone.

My first thought … it’s BIG.

Second thought …. it’s BIG.

Third thought … it’s really really REALLY BIG.

I knew it was going to be big, so this shouldn’t have been a surprise to me, but yet somehow it was.

Holding it in my hand as MY phone, it just felt awfully, uhhhh …. big.

I’ll admit to some concerning thoughts. Did I make a mistake? Should I return this?

But I think it wasn’t just the size that was throwing me off a bit. Whenever we get something new, and it’s a bit different from our old-and-familiar, I think we always need a little time to adjust. I needed some adjusting time.

My first wacky moment came when I tried to put it to sleep. I have a habit of clicking the top of my iPhone and sending it to sleep (dark) before putting it in my pocket. To my surprise, there is NO sleep button on the top of this phone. They moved it to the side.

So, once I learned that the button was on the side, I noticed that my case maker had left one of the side buttons exposed. Without giving it a thought, I pushed it. Nothing happened. Pushed it again. Nothing. This is when I realized that I was pushing the mute button and that the sleep button was on the OTHER side. Sigh. (This experience should once and forever squash the rumor that I know what I’m doing. :) )

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As I worked through some of my apps today, I was once again pleased with my decision to update through iTunes. So far, every single app with “data” moved over without any problem whatsoever. Passwords, lists, a weight tracker and a grocery list all arrived on my new phone in perfect order.

The only app that gave me trouble was the Overdrive app. On my iPhone 5, I was in the middle of listening to an audio book from my library through this app. I needed to put the same book on my new phone. Let me be clear: this is an app issue, NOT a phone issue. Nevertheless, this was an inconvenience albeit something you have to expect when changing phones. On my last attempt, I managed to download the book again from my library, and now all is well. Yay!

The size of the phone makes the screen a wonderful sight to behold. Texting is a pleasure with more room and some additional perks (which are part of iOS 8 and will also be addressed later). The screen has room for photos of your texting friends, and it looks very nice.

The iPhone+ turns to landscape, and the icons move with you, just like on an iPad. This is a delightful option, and I like it! The ‘tray’ icons, the ones you leave at the bottom, move to the side in landscape. Nice! Your mail and texting appear as they do on the iPad. All good. There is plenty of room on the screen for these extra arrangements.

The phone I just gave up was a 5, which was “before” the Touch id, so I had no previous experience with this fingerprint technology. It was another thing I had to get used to. It was easy to set up. The phone took me through the process by having me tap my finger on the home button several times. I did this with my thumb. Half a day later I realized that I rarely use my thumb, and I kept having to awkwardly unlock my phone with an odd posture (for me). So I easily added an extra fingerprint (my index finger). I was also mildly annoyed that the phone locked “immediately” and I had no ability to change that. BUT with just a tiny bit of practice I learned that a mere tap with my finger now unlocks the phone in a fraction of a second, and so all in well once again. I guess I adapt quickly. This morning I found the touch annoying, but this evening, I love it.

Battery life is not something I can address, yet. Apple claims that the battery life of this phone is quite good. I can tell you that I’ve run through most of it on Day One. :shock: However …. I’ve been using the phone constantly today. If I haven’t been exploring it, I’ve been listening to an audio book or music, so it has been “running” all day. That said ….. I was hoping for a better battery life than a single day. We’ll see.

The Kindle app looks gorgeous on this iPhone. Yes indeed, this will be an awesome device to carry for all-reasons. You can call, text, play (you can SEE the solitaire cards!), listen and READ all on the same piece of equipment. I frequently carried my Kindle AND my phone. Now the phone will often be enough.

Overall … I am happy with the iPhone 6+. I do think that if you are a tight-pants wearer you will find this phone a bit large. My mom-jeans are fine for the phone, but other carrying-places might be tight.

(Message to my friend who carries her phone in her bra: this phone is not for you. :) )

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I did it! I set up my own new iPhone 6 Plus

Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 9.21.16 PMAlthough the new iPhone arrived yesterday, it came late in the afternoon, and that was not a good time for me to start. I wanted to do it when I could give it ALL of my attention and since I am a morning person, that meant today. I was going to get to it first thing this morning.

I woke with the best intentions, but of course, as usual, Life gets in the way. When I could finally turn my attention to the phone, I panicked big time just a bit, and chose, instead, to go to the store to get a case. :) I convinced myself that I couldn’t possibly set up the phone without a case. So off I went to Best Buy. (Of course, you really don’t need a case to set up your phone.)

Home again, with no more excuses, I began the deed.

The first thing I had to decide was how I wanted to do this. You have several choices.

You can set up the phone as a new device (the easiest).

You can set it up from a Cloud backup.

You can set it up through an iTunes backup.

The “new device” approach was not an option for me. I wanted to bring all my settings, contacts, etc, to the new phone. (However, there are those who prefer a “fresh” phone set up. If you are thinking of that, read this.)

Since I wanted to transfer all my old phone stuff to my new phone, I had a choice between the other two options. I could do it through the Cloud, or I could do it through iTunes. Since I only use the Cloud in a limited way, this was not a hard decision at all. I knew I would be using iTunes to set up my new phone.

Once I made sure that my iTunes was current and up to date, it was time to BEGIN!

The first thing I did was plug in my OLD phone into iTunes so that I could have a current backup. I hadn’t done that in quite a while, so it took some time. iTunes wanted to update the software from 7 to 8, but I declined that since that phone was about to be retired.


When the backup was complete, I disconnected my old phone from iTunes. At this point I felt a little panic rising again, but I proceeded with few deep breaths and a lot of self-talk.

I am happy to report …..It was incredibly easy. :)

I turned on the new iPhone. It comes already charged, so you don’t have to worry about that.

And after it lights up…….

you simply follow the messages on the screen. The phone will greet you and ask you a few questions (such as your country and choice of language).

And then, to my surprise, it gave me a screen with my phone number. It asked me to confirm. I did…. and …. poof! Through the magic of I-don’t-know-what, my OLD phone suddenly showed “no service” and the NEW phone was activated with my phone number.

At that point, I was instructed to plug it into iTunes (after selecting that as my choice of set up).

And so, plug it in, I did.


There was nothing more for me to do for a while but wait. The iPhone and iTunes communicated perfectly and moved everything onto my new device. At first I was surprised how quickly things were going, but there were also software updates involved, and so I’m guessing the whole thing took about 40 minutes.

Most interesting, is that while the NEW phone was syncing, it rang! Remember, it ‘activated’ with my phone number in the very beginning of the process. And so, I got a call in the middle of the transferring of all the everything :) and I answered it! And had a conversation during the process. Seamless. Flawless. I wasn’t even “out of reach” for any time at all.

The phone does a lot of rebooting and installing with the Apple logo and the long white line. I saw that several times during the process.

I would keep an eye on the phone during the process so that you are SURE it is done, and you don’t disconnect prematurely.

When I was sure it was done, I disconnected.

Almost everything was exactly as I had it set up on the other phone. One or two ringtones were mixed up, but that was all.

My notes, my calendar, my contacts, my music, my pictures …. all transferred perfectly.

I’m happy with my choice to use iTunes to do the deed.

The iPhone 6 Plus is BIG. I knew it was big, but it really is. BIG. Look at this picture. It’s almost as big as my iPad Mini!


My feelings about this bigness and several other observations (and a few glitches) coming soon…… (I just thought it was too much to load into just one blog post!)

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My iPhone 6 Plus is on its way!

Over the weekend, I got some happy phone-news.

My iPhone 6 Plus has been shipped!

And, it looks like I’m getting it earlier than the original guess-estimate delivery date.

It should be here on Thursday. And then I’ll unpack it, and try to set it up myself.

I’ll be sure to tell you all the steps I use …. (I’m hoping for an uneventful switch from one phone to the other).

From Skitch-20

From Skitch-21

Now I must start looking for a case. I’ve used the Speck Grip for the last several years (and love it), but they haven’t yet made that available for the 6 Plus.

I suppose I could be patient, and use it undressed (aka naked) for a while, but that worries me a lot just a little. :shock:

In the meantime, I’ll look at others.

Any case recommendations? I love my Speck, but I’d be interested in your choices. What do you use? Why do you like it?

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