There are a lot of secrets about the iPad that should be obvious to any user, but unfortunately isn’t We dig around in all the nooks and crannies of our Apple tablets in order to bring you as much information as possible for using your device to its fullest potential. Last week, we walked you through setting up mail accounts on your iPad so now you can read work emails, personal emails, and messages from that junk account you set up just to be able to sign up for things.
This week, we are focusing on the iPad’s calendar app and how you can sync it to your Outlook account, your Gmail account, and your Mac’s iCal.
You may think that the iPad’s calendar app is nothing more than a stand-alone organizer, but it is actually a heavy-duty workhorse that can be synced across all of your iOS devices, plus some of the more popular online calendars. You can even sync your Facebook events and birthday reminders.
If you haven’t already started using your calendar app, you can begin by adding events. To add an event, tap the plus (+) cymbal in the lower-right corner of the calendar app’s screen. When the “Add Event” window appears, ad the name of the event, the location, and the date and time. If you want to set up a repeating event, tap “Repeat” tab and select how often you’d like the event to repeat. You can choose from every day (feed the cat), to every year (Grandma’s birthday).
You can also invite others to your event if it is something you want to share. For example, if you want to schedule a book group night, you can create an event and then select “Invite Attendees.” In this section, you can add email addresses for anyone in your contacts list. Once sent, the attendees will receive an email alert with the information and the ability to R.S.V.P. to your event.
You can set up your iPad to send you alerts when for your events in the settings section. See our iPad Tips article on customizing your Notification Center to find out how to set up alerts.
If you already use an online calendar account through Gmail, Microsoft Exchange, Yahoo, Aol, or Hotmail, you can easily add it to your iPad’s Calendar app. Go to your Settings app, select the Mail, Contacts, Calendars tab and tap “Add Account.” Then, simply add the calendar’s name, your email address and the calendar’s password. It will then sync with your app. To sync with your iCal calendar on your iMac, first go to the iCloud section in your Settings app and toggle the on/off switch to “on” for calendars. This will allow you to sync the OSX and iOS calendar data between all devices that are in the cloud. Including your computer’s calendar.
If you are using another online calendar that is not listed, tap “Other” under Add Account in the Calendar section of your Settings app. Here, you can choose which type of calendar you would like to sync, including a different mail calendar, a CalDAV account, and a subscribed calendar, like one from iCalShare.com.
When you add Facebook integration to your iPad, your Facebook events and birthdays will automatically be added. This can be both helpful and burdensome. If your Calendar app is getting too bogged down with all of your Facebook events, work schedules, various email accounts, and iCloud syncs, you can hide some of them.
Tap the “Calendars” tab in the upper-left corner of your Calendar app. The list of all of the calendars you subscribe to will be listed. You can uncheck every calendar that you want hidden from view. You can always unhide them if you want to see them again.
Now your Calendar app is set up and ready to keep you on schedule. No more excuses for forgetting your brother’s birthday or not knowing what time that manager’s meeting is.