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How to Set Up Your New iPhone 4S

Your iPhone 4S runs iOS 5, which doesn’t require you to connect your iPhone to a computer — PC or Mac — running iTunes. However, certain tasks — such as rearranging icons on your Home screens and managing media — are easier on a computer than on the iPhone’s smaller screen.

Although Apple’s free iCloud wireless storage and synchronization service is strictly optional, it’s especially useful if you’re planning to use your iPhone PC-free.

If your iPhone 4S is fresh out of the box, follow these steps to set it up:

  1. Turn on the iPhone or wake it if it’s sleeping.

  2. Tap the language you want this iPhone to use and move to the next screen.

    Tap the blue arrow button in the upper-right corner to advance to the next screen.

  3. Tap your country or region and then tap the blue Next button.

  4. Tap to enable or disable Location Services and then tap the blue Next button.

    Location Services is your iPhone’s way of knowing your precise geographical location. You can turn Location Services on or off globally or for individual apps in Settings.

  5. Tap to choose a Wi-Fi network, type a password if necessary, tap the blue Join button, and then tap the blue Next button.

    Tapping Next initiates the activation process, which requires either a Wi-Fi network or your wireless carrier’s cellular network and may take up to five minutes.

    If neither network is available, you’ll see an alert that says you need to connect your iPhone to your computer and use iTunes to complete the activation and setup process.

  6. If you’re replacing an old iPhone with this one, choose either Restore from iCloud Backup or Restore from iTunes Backup to have the new iPhone restored with the settings and data from your previous one. (If this is your first iPhone, choose Set Up as New iPhone and tap the blue Next button, and proceed to Step 7.)

    You’ll see either the iCloud Sign In screen or the Connect to iTunes screen. Follow the on-screen instructions and choose the backup you want to restore from. In a few minutes (or more if your old iPhone contained a lot of data), your new iPhone will contain all the apps, media files, and settings from your old iPhone.

    If you're replacing an old iPhone with this one, you’re finished!

  7. Tap Sign In with Your Apple ID or tap Create a Free Apple ID. Then (you know) tap the blue Next button.

    You can tap Skip This Step and proceed without supplying an Apple ID, but you’ll need a free Apple ID to take advantage of the myriad excellent and free features — including iCloud.

  8. To agree to the terms and conditions, tap the blue Agree button in the lower-right corner.

    A Terms and Conditions alert appears.

  9. Tap the Agree button and then tap the blue Next button.

    If you disagree, you won’t be able to use your iPhone.

  10. Do one of the following:

    • If you want to use iCloud: Good choice! Tap Use iCloud and then tap the blue Next button. Follow the instructions on the Back Up to iCloud screen and tap the blue Next button again.

    • If you don’t want to use iCloud: Tap Don’t Use iCloud and then tap the blue arrow button.

  11. Tap Use Find My iPhone or Don’t Use Find My iPhone, and then tap the blue Next button.

    Find My iPhone is a seriously cool feature that lets you locate and secure your iPhone if it ever gets lost or stolen.

  12. Tap Use Siri or Don’t Use Siri and then tap the blue Next button.

    If you choose not to enable Siri (but there’s no good reason not to enable it), you can still use voice commands for dialing the phone and controlling the Music app.

  13. Tap either Automatically Send or Don’t Send, and then tap the blue Next button.

    If you tap Automatically Send, anonymous diagnostic and usage data will be sent to Apple.

  14. Tap Start Using iPhone to, well, start using your iPhone.

    Your iPhone’s Home screen appears in all its glory.

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