TurboScan for iPhone free for Limited Time

My favorite iPhone scanning app, TurboScan, is currently free. The promotion is set to expire today, so if you want one of the best scanning apps for your iPhone without having to pay anything, head to the Apple App Store now!

This app uses your iPhone camera to make high quality page scans. It supports multi-page scans and once you have scanned documents, you can email them to others or send as a PDF to your favorite PDF viewing app. It is definitely worth the try for free, but even if you miss the sale, still easily worth the $2.99 regular purchase price.

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iOS 8, Using Third-Party Keyboards, Swiftkey and Swype

iOS 8 was recently released for the iPad and the iPhone. Among the exciting new features of this operating system update is the ability to use a third-party keyboard in place of Apple’s stock keyboard. This allows users of the iPhone and iPad to now install a keyboard that can use new methods of inputting text to increase productivity. Busy legal professionals can now use keyboards from Swiftkey and Swype to quickly add or edit text by sliding their fingers across the screen.

I created a video that explains how to download, install, and activate both Swiftkey and Swype on your device. There are currently a number of free and paid keyboard apps available in the app store, but Swiftkey and Swype have been around for years on Android, and have had a head start in the field of creating alternative keyboards. Once you figure out how to install the keyboards, they are simple to use, and you always have the option of quickly switching back to Apple’s native keyboard.

My only complaint with the third-party keyboards thus far, is that you lose the ability to dictate when a third-party keyboard is selected. The little microphone that is usually present on the bottom of the screen goes away, and the only way you can get it back is to switch back to the native keyboard.

If you have updated your device to iOS 8, don’t delay, download a new keyboard and see how you like it!

Steven Butler EsquireThis post was written by Steven Butler. Steven is a full-time Delaware attorney that limits his practice to Social Security Disability. Along with being a contributor for iPlugDelaware, he is a partner at Linarducci & Butler, PA.

Managing Notifications and Alerts on Your iPhone and iPad

There are many different ways that apps can notify you on your iPad and iPhone, but it isn’t always easy figuring out how to manage those notifications. In iOS 7, notifications are managed in the settings app. Most notifications are stored in the notification center, but they can also be shown in the lock screen, and you can be notified by a pop-up alert, a sound, or a banner. The wonderful thing is that iOS 7 gives you complete control of your notifications.

The first thing to understand is the Notification Center Settings. This is where you control all aspects of your notifications. You access these settings by going into the Settings app, and tapping on Notification Center. There is no way to disable Notification Center when your device is unlocked, but you can disable the ability to see Notification center on your lock screen. Notification Center itself is a pull down screen you access from swiping down from the top of the taskbar on the iPhone or iPad.

The Notification Center settings control what you see in this swipe down screen, but also all other ways that apps notify you on the iPhone and iPad. By default, when you install any new app, it is included in the notification center. You can tell if an app is included by looking to see whether it is in the “Include” or “Do Not Include” section of the settings panel. If it is in “Include” the app’s notifications will appear in the Notification Center.

To control an individual app, and the way it notifies you, tap on the name of the app you want to control. Within these settings, you can remove the app from the Notification Center by swiping the selector next to “Show In Notification Center”. In addition to deciding whether to show in the Notification Center, you can choose whether to show 1, 5, 10, or 20 Recent Items. Disabling in Notification Center does not remove all alerts from the app, it only removes the alerts from showing in Notification Center.

Within the individual app settings in Notification Center, you also select how you want to be notified of individual alerts (again, this is independent of whether the apps show in Notification Center). You can select None if you do not want to be interrupted by a notification from an app (but it will still show in Notification Center if you haven’t disabled the Show in Notification Center alert). You can also select to have a Banner notification (which just briefly displays on the top of your screen) or an Alert (which pops up on your screen and must be acted on to be dismissed from your screen). This is also where you decide if you want a sound played when the app alerts you (just swipe next to Sounds to enable or disable the audible alert), and whether to Badge the App Icon (place a number in the upper right corner of the app icon showing how many alerts the app has sent since you last accessed it).

Examples of Banner notification and pop-up Alert notification:

The final option that you have is whether notifications are shown on the lock screen. For example many attorneys would not want to show email in the lock screen. If you do not want an app to be able to notify you when your device is locked, disable the Show in Lock Screen setting by swiping it so it no longer has green next to it. Be aware that even if you have Show in Lock Screen disabled, there would still be an audible alert if you have sounds enabled.

Lock Screen Alert

Although these are the basic settings that you see for all apps, some apps, like Mail, FaceTime, and Messages do have additional options. For example, Messages and FaceTime allow you to choose the sound used to alert you. Mail allows you to set different alert options for any email account you have setup, and also to choose different options for VIP messages. Messages also allows you to only be alerted for contacts, to show previews of your messages, and whether to repeat alerts.

I hope this helps with better understanding the types of alerts that you can receive on your iPad and iPhone and how to manage the alerts that you receive. Although iOS 8 will make some changes to the Notification Center, most of the settings discussed will remain the same in the next version of the iPhone and iPad software.

 

 

PDF Expert Now a Universal App for iPhone and iPad

Readdle, the maker of PDF Expert, recently updated the iPad version of PDF Expert to version 5.1. In addition to promised speed increase, the most notable addition is that the app is now universal. This means that if you buy (or have previously purchased) the iPad app, you also now receive the iPhone version. Continuous Scroll was also added to the newest version (meaning that you don’t have to wait for pages to load as you scroll larger documents).

PDF Expert has long been one of my favorite PDF annotation and editing apps, and this update makes it even easier to recommend. In addition to no longer needing to purchase a separate iPhone version of this app, Readdle promises that the iPhone version is just as powerful as the iPad one.

The only bad news is for users that previously used only the iPhone version, unfortunately that app has been retired and you will need to purchase the universal app for the new features. iPad users will receive a free update if they previously purchased PDF Expert 5.

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Download PDF Expert 5.1 from the Apple App Store.