How to Use iPad 2's Touchscreen - dummies

How to Use iPad 2’s Touchscreen

The iPad uses touchscreen technology. When you swipe your finger across the iPad’s touchscreen or tap it, you’re providing input to the device. You use the pads of your fingertips (not your fingernails) to touch the screen and command the iPad to do something. Practice a bit with you iPad and you’ll soon get the hang of it.

Treat the iPad screen carefully. It’s made of glass and will smudge when you touch it (and will break if you throw it at the wall).

  1. Turn on your iPad.


    When the iPad Home screen appears, you see a pretty background and two sets of icons. One set appears in the Dock, along the bottom of the screen. The Dock contains the Safari, Mail, Photos, and iPod app buttons by default, though you can add other apps to it.

    The Dock also appears on every Home screen. You can add new apps to populate as many as 11 additional Home screens. Other icons appear above the Dock and are closer to the top of the screen. Different icons appear in this area on each Home screen.

  2. Tap the Settings icon.


    The various settings appear.

  3. To return to the Home screen, press the Home button.


  4. Swipe a finger or two from right to left on the screen.


    If downloaded apps fill additional Home screens, this action moves you to the next Home screen. Note the little dots at the bottom of the screen, above the Dock icons, indicating which Home screen is displayed. The dot on the far left represents the Spotlight search screen.

  5. To experience the screen rotation feature, hold the iPad firmly while turning it sideways.

    The screen flips to the horizontal orientation. To flip the screen back, just turn the device so that it’s oriented like a pad of paper again.

Now that you’ve turned on the iPad and played with it a bit, test out the various ways in which you can get things done.

  • Tap once: To open an application on the Home screen, choose a field such as a search box, select an item in a list, select an arrow to move back or forward one screen, or follow an online link, tap the item once with your finger.

  • Tap twice: Use this method to enlarge or reduce the display of a web page or to zoom in or out in the Maps app.

You can use the three-finger tap to zoom your screen to be even larger.

  • Pinch: As an alternative to the tap-twice method, you can pinch your fingers together or move them apart on the screen when you’re looking at photos, maps, web pages, or e-mail messages to quickly reduce or enlarge them, respectively.


  • Drag to scroll (swipe): When you press your finger to the screen and drag to the right or left or drag up or down, the screen moves.


    Swiping to the right on the Home screen, for example, moves you to the Spotlight screen (the iPad search screen). Swiping down while reading an online newspaper moves you down the page, and swiping up moves you back up the page.

  • Flick: To scroll more quickly on a page, quickly flick your finger on the screen in the direction you want to move.

  • Tap the Status bar: To move quickly to the top of a list, web page, or e-mail message, tap the Status bar, located at the very top of the iPad screen.


  • Press and hold: If you’re using Notes or Mail or any other application that lets you select text , or if you’re on a web page, pressing and holding text selects a word and displays editing tools you can use to select, cut, or copy the text.