Looking at the Preinstalled Apps on Your iPad - dummies

Looking at the Preinstalled Apps on Your iPad

By Nancy C. Muir

The iPad comes with certain functionality and applications — or apps, for short — preinstalled. When you look at the Home screen, you see icons for each app. This task gives you an overview of what each app does. From left to right, the icons in the Dock are

  • Messages: For those who have been waiting for instant messaging on iPad, the iMessage feature comes to the rescue. Using the Messages app, you can engage in live text- and image-based conversations with others via their phones or other devices that use messaging. You can also send video or audio messages.

  • Mail: You use this application to access mail accounts that you’ve set up for the iPad. When you do, your email is displayed without your having to browse to the site or sign in. Then you can use tools to move among a few preset mail folders, read and reply to mail, and download attached photos to your iPad.

  • Safari: You use the Safari web browser to navigate on the Internet, create and save bookmarks of favorite sites, and add web clips to your Home screen so that you can quickly visit favorite sites from there. You may have used this web browser (or another such as Internet Explorer) on your desktop computer.

  • Music: Music is the name of your audio media player. Though its main function is to play music, you can use it to play podcasts or audiobooks as well.

Apps with icons above the Dock and closer to the top of the Home screen include

  • FaceTime: The FaceTime video-calling app lets you use the iPad cameras (not present on the original iPad) to talk face-to-face with someone who has an iPad 2 or later.

  • Calendar: Use this handy onscreen daybook to set up appointments and send alerts to remind you about them.

  • Photos: The photo application in iPad helps you organize pictures in folders, email photos to others, use a photo as your iPad wallpaper, and assign pictures to contact records. You can also run slideshows of your photos, open albums, pinch or unpinch to shrink or expand photos, and scroll photos with a simple swipe.

    You can use the Photo Stream feature via iCloud to share photos among your friends. Photos displays images by collections, including Years and Moments, and offers filters you can apply to pictures you’ve taken to achieve different effects.

  • Camera: The Camera app is central control for the still and video cameras built into the iPad 2 and later. In addition, the FaceTime app uses your iPad camera to make and receive FaceTime (video) calls.

  • Contacts: In this address-book feature, you can enter contact information (including photos, if you like, from your Photos or Cameras app) and share contact information by email. You can also use the search feature to find your contacts easily.

  • Clock: This app allows you to display clocks from around the world, set alarms, and use timer and stopwatch features.

  • Maps: In this cool Apple mapping program, you can view classic maps or aerial views of addresses; find directions from one place to another by car or foot; and view your maps in 3-D. You can even get your directions read out loud by a spoken narration feature.

  • Videos: This media player is similar to Music but specializes in playing videos and offers a few features specific to this type of media, such as chapter breakdowns and information about a movie’s plot and cast.

  • Notes: Enter text or cut and paste text from a website into this simple notepad app. You can’t do much except save notes or email them; the app has no features for formatting text or inserting objects. You’ll find Notes handy, though, for taking simple notes on the fly.

  • Reminders: This useful app centralizes all your calendar entries and alerts to keep you on schedule, and also allows you to create to-do lists.

  • Photo Booth: This fun photo effects app, which has been supplied with Mac computers for some time, lets you add effects to photos you take with your iPad camera in weird and wonderful ways.

  • News: This app, new with iOS 9, is a news aggregator. You can select news sources and the News app displays top stories from those sources.

  • Game Center: The Game Center app helps you browse games in the App Store and track scores when you play games with other people online. You can add friends and challenge one another to beat best scores.

  • iTunes Store: Tapping this icon takes you to the iTunes Store, where you can shop ‘til you drop (or until your iPad battery runs out of juice) for music, movies, TV shows, audiobooks, and podcasts and then download them directly to your iPad.

  • App Store: At the online App Store, you can buy and download applications that enable you to do everything from playing games to building business presentations. Some of these apps are even free!

  • iBooks: This is an outstanding e-reader app similar to the Amazon Kindle.

  • Settings: Settings isn’t exactly an app, but it’s an icon you should know about, anyway: It’s the central location on the iPad where you can specify settings for various functions and perform administrative tasks such as setting up email accounts or creating a password.

  • Podcasts: On the second Home screen in portrait orientation (or the first Home screen in landscape), in the Extras folder, you’ll find the Podcasts app for playing audio broadcasts, and iTunes U offering access to tons of online courses.

Also, note that some free apps such as Pages and the Calculator appear on your second Home screen.