Overwhelmed With the Information on Your iDevice? Breathe Easier With Notification Center
Scott J. Grossberg, Esq.
Your iPad and iPhone are incredible computers. More than that, they are your personal information collectors. They are content banks, message libraries, and data archives. It’s easily alarming, however, when you need to find something quickly and efficiently and confidently. Let me offer you a little reason and organization. And it all begins with getting to know Notification Center on your iDevices. In fact, I’m constantly asked how I’m using the Notification Center on both my iPhone and iPad. Here are some very practical tips and tricks and workflow suggestions for you to use.
If you don’t know already, Notification Center is built into your iDevices and your OS X operating system (your desktop and laptop). As the name implies, Notification Center provides you with notifications and status updates for a wide variety of items and apps. For example, on your iPhone, Notification Center will provide you with weather and stock information. And you can even have the notifications appear through popups, banners, beeps, and buzzes. But wait . . . there’s more . . . you can enter your Notification Screen directly from your iDevices lock screen so that you have what you need in a flash.
So, how do you get things to display on your Notification Center in the first place? Well, in its default state, Notification Center gives you a Today view. Want to see it in action? Just take your iDevice, place your finger at the top of the screen, and slide your finger down. The Notification Screen will appear. Here are the items on my screen in the order that they appear:
When you scroll down to the very bottom of the Notification Screen you will see an EDIT button. Just tap that button and you are given a menu of items that can be included and not included on your Notification Screen. It’s really as simple as just choosing which items you want to see. When you are finished with your selections, tap the DONE button at the top right of your screen.
Of course, from that same edit screen, you can then choose the order in which items will appear on your Notification Screen.
So, here’s the really powerful part of using your Notification Screen. It’s accessible from your iPhone’s and iPad’s lock screens! What that means for you is that you simply turn your iDevice on and from the initial screen you just wipe down from the top to reveal all the important information you need to see in an instant.
Now, while you are on the Today screen summary, slide your finger to the left. Voila! You now have an additional Notification screen that displays recent app notifications. For example, on my Notification Screen I can see recent voicemails, email, calendar entries, and even my WorldMate travel announcements.
By the way, I can hear it already. Some of you are saying, “Are you out of your mind? I don’t want my information available from the lock screen!” Relax. You can disable the default visibility of Notification Center on your lock screen by doing the following:
Settings > Touch ID & Passcode > Enter Your Passcode > Allow Access When Locked > Turn off the options
Although I keep my Notification Screen accessible from my lock screen, I don’t want my iDevices beeping and buzzing and vibrating and displaying banners and popup notifications all the time. The awesomeness of Notification Center is that it’s fully customizable and I can decide which apps I want to send me notifications, if at all, and in what format. When you are ready to disable the banners and popups just do the following:
Settings > Notifications > Scroll down to the app whose notifications you want to disable and tap on that app > Tap on Allow Notifications to disable
You will also notice that, from this last screen on each app, you can set how many recent items for that app will appear in your Notification Center, disable any sounds, and specifically choose app-by-app whether it will appear on the Lock Screen.
Most of the customization for the Notification Screen is very easy and self-explanatory. However, if you’re like me, you like to track some specific stock information. And that’s not so easy to program if you don’t have the information. So . . . here you go (who said nothing in life is free?) . . .
The items that appear in your Notification Screen are called widgets. One of the first things I needed to do was modify the stock/ticker widget to show stocks I actually invest in rather than the default that is provided for you. To add your own stocks to the Notification Screen do the following:
Go to the Stocks app on your iDevice > Tap on the Stocks app > Tap on the List icon in the lower right of your screen (it looks like a small bulleted list) > Tap the + symbol (in the top left of your new screen) > enter the ticker symbol of the stock you want to watch
You can also delete stocks from the Notification Screen in the same way. Naturally, you can also reorder the way the various stock information is displayed.
Tap DONE when you are finished.
I should end this with the understanding that the Notification Screen on your iPhone is actually more powerful than the one on your iPad. Well, not really more powerful. It’s just that the iPhone Notification Center has more options. For example, I can get the stock tickers on my iPhone but not on my iPad notifications.
I’ve only scratched the surface of what Notification Center can do for you and how amazing it really is. Until we dig deeper, take the initiative and start to play with this impressive iOS offering and you will see that you, too, can save time and make even more money with your iPhone and iPad.
If you enjoyed this, I’d be grateful if you share this with others. That’s right, go ahead and help spread this information by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. And, if you’re interested in finding out how I can make a presentation to your law firm or association, please contact me at 909-483-1850 or email me at email@example.com.© 2014 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved.