The Most Obvious Yet Elusive Technology Tip Of All: Read The Manual

The Most Obvious Yet Elusive Technology Tip Of All: Read The Manual
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When was the last time you actually read the manual for a new device? You might be surprised at how much new info is in there.

The Unclutterer discovers that the iPhone manual lists an incredible amount of stuff:

I recently saw a comment online that read something like, “All I use the iPhone’s Home button is for is taking screenshots. What else is it for?” Here at Unclutterer, we believe that knowing what your gear is capable of doing improves your productivity and helps to keep you organised. In short, we think you should always read the manual so you get the most of your technology and don’t waste your time and money.

By reading the manual we discovered this one button can do eight separate things.

Now, most of those things you probably already know. But some you won’t. For example, when we recently shared our top 10 iOS gestures, many people — including us — were shocked to find that you can press the Shift key and drag your finger to another key for faster capital letters. I’ve owned an iPad for years and didn’t know this. Turns out, it was in the iPad manual all along.

Obviously, there are always lesser-known tips waiting to be discovered. But a lot of times, the tips that “blow our mind” are right in front of our faces. That manual may be 100 pages, but it might be worth perusing after all.

Improve Your Productivity by Reading the Manual [Unclutterer]


  • I honestly miss written manuals. The smell of fresh print alone was enough to get me excited. Then taking the time to go through every feature and ensure I got the best out of whatever I just bought was the most fun – like putting lego together.

  • Read The ManualAre you mad…? How will I achieve that smug sense of self satisfaction I get when I figure it out on my own…? Seriously though, does anyone actually read the manual before realising that it’s the only way to make a device work properly..?

  • I bought a wireless multifunction fax/printer/scanner for a small agency I managed last year. I spent a very profitable day or two with the manual setting it up for routine jobs and getting faxes etc re-routed to email. Using that single sub-$1000 device properly – which no one else there had the capacity to configure, even if properly motivated – was enough to transform the business.

    I notice now that a lot of younger folk who call themselves computer literate on their resumes, are only able to use highly constrained apps that do specific tasks. Put them in front of a more sophisticated tool (e.g. a spreadsheet) or device, and there’s a failure to grasp even the possibility that it might do a lot of things if they only learned how.

  • I have an amateur radio licence and I have the Yaesu VX-5 tranceiver which has lots of triple function buttons.
    the official manual left out a lot of stuff and I learned of this Canadian guy who printed this little yellow manual which had more features not in the original one.

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