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iPad: The basics

The first thing you need to do before turning on your iPad, is to familiarise yourself with the position of the buttons and connection points around the sides of your device. Hold your device with the touch screen in front of you and ensure the round recessed button is positioned at the bottom of the touch screen, if this is not the case rotate your device until it is held in this position. The longer edges of your device will now be on the left and right sides, the shorter edges will be on the top and bottom. 

Portrait and Landscape Orientation.

Your device is rectangular in shape and when you hold it so the distance top to bottom is more than the distance left to right, and with the recessed button at the bottom you will be holding your device in what is known as its normal "Portrait" orientation. If you rotate the device left or right through ninety degrees, the device is now being held in its “Landscape" Orientation. 

The Wake/Sleep Button.

With your device held in its normal portrait orientation, the wake/sleep button is positioned on the edge near the top right-hand corner. You use this button to power your device on and off, and if required to manually activate or clear the lock screen. 

The Mute Switch.

You can use the side switch on the iPad to either lock the screen orientation or to mute some iPad sounds and alerts.

Rotation Lock.

Use the side switch on the iPad to prevent the display from switching between portrait and landscape mode. If Screen Rotation Lock is enabled the display remains in landscape or portrait mode, regardless of how the iPad is held. Note, the Rotation Lock icon appears in the status bar.


Use the side switch on the iPad to mute certain sounds. Note, sounds such as alerts, notifications, sound effects, and game audio are muted but Media playback (music, podcasts, movies, videos, and TV shows etc.) are not muted.

The Mute Switch does not silence Voiceover. 

Camera and Voice Memo sounds are not always silenced either.

The Volume Buttons.

The volume buttons are positioned immediately below the Mute Switch. Pressing these buttons will increase or decrease the volume of whatever sound your device is producing. When playing music or movies the media volume only will be affected, however when using Face Time or the phone, then volume for that conversation will be affected.

Please be aware that if Voiceover is speaking, it is possible to inadvertently turn the volume of Voiceover to zero. Be careful not to do this. If you need Voiceover to be silent you will need to tap with two fingers on the screen to temporarily mute Voiceover, tapping again with two fingers will start the voiceover narrator speaking again.

The Headphone/Microphone Jack.

The headset jack is situated on the top left hand side of the iPad, this is where you can insert a headphone jack. 

Charging the iPad and using the USB connection.

If you hold your device in its normal portrait orientation, you will notice a small slot near the centre of the bottom edge. This is where the charging cord is connected, it’s also used as the USB port to connect your device to a computer. 

The Home Button.

If you hold your device in its normal portrait orientation the small recessed button centred below the touch screen is the Home Button. It has several functions that vary depending on your accessibility settings. Primarily you use it to return to the starting or Home Screen.

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Accessibility Page Control Section

Keyboard control (Chrome/Safari): Screen Speak - Press ALT + s, Pause Audio - Press Alt + p. To reset/reload page activate the Reload Page button below.

Search Section

If you are using a laptop, then to search for text on any currently displayed page press Control and F, then enter the required search text in the displayed search box. Any text found in the current page will be highlighted, you can use the up and down symbols displayed within the search box to search forward or backwards for occurrences of your search text.

If you are accessing this site via a smart phone or tablet, you will need to navigate to the 'More options' button, usually towards the top right hand side of your screen, to access your device Search options for the currently displayed page. Note that sometimes instead of the word 'Search' your device might display 'Find in page' as the option to select for searching the current page.

To search for text primarily in other pages of the Simplyinformed Website, enter text in the search box below. To get back from the search results Press ALT and Left Arrow. Please note there may be a few initial links that take you to other sites that match your site search string, these can of course be disregarded if you only want to be taken to content on this site. Please note that the Search box is displayed as a table with one row and three columns, in other there are three cells in the search table layout. Cell one is where you enter your search string and press enter, or move to cell two to activate the Search Button. Move to cell three to find the clear search content button to clear out the text in cell on, ready to enter a new search string. Use the Up and Down arrows to move through search table cells when using NVDA. Once the Narrator has been taken to the search box press the enter key so that the screen reader switches into text input mode.

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