Check out these hidden tips and tricks for Apple’s Podcasts app

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Apple's podcasts app is deeper than you might imagine.
Apple's podcasts app is deeper than you might imagine.
Photo: Incase/Flickr CC

Apple’s Podcasts app is now the equal of any third-party podcast, or “podcatcher,” app for iOS. I recently switched to using it as my default podcasts app, and I’ve found it does pretty much everything you could want it to.

In fact, it seems like some developers inside Apple are doing the same. The app really is well-designed and now offers some surprisingly deep “pro” features. And these pro features are what we’re going to look at today.

How to add bookmarks to your iPhone home screen

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These bookmark-metaphor photos are going a bit too far.
These bookmark-metaphor photos are going a bit too far.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

If you have a website you visit frequently — and who doesn’t? — then you might like to have quicker access to that site. You might appreciate an icon on your iPhone’s home screen that you can tap to launch that site, just like you’d launch an app.

Today we’ll see how to add a bookmark to your iPhone home screen. And if you already know how to do this, check out the post anyway. There are a couple of neat extra tricks in there.

Pro Tip: Use iOS Spotlight as a keyboard app launcher

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spotlight keyboard ap launcher
A spotlight helps find things.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Pro Tip Cult of Mac bugDid you know that you can use Spotlight on iOS as an app launcher? It works just like Launchbar or Alfred on the Mac. You just hit a keyboard shortcut and start typing, then hit enter to launch the app. If you have a wireless (or wired) keyboard attached to your iPad, you’re going to love this tip.

How to use Type to Siri in iOS 11 (and why you’ll love it)

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type to siri prompt
Type to Siri really shines on the iPad.
Photo: Cult of Mac

iOS 11 is Apple’s most keyboard-friendly version of its mobile software yet, but that doesn’t mean you have to hook up an external keyboard to use its best new keyboard-centric features. Today we’ll look at Type to Siri, which can be used whenever you’d usually talk to your favorite digital assistant just by tapping on the usual on-screen keyboard.

How to mute iMessage threads, and spot those you accidentally silenced

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shhh mute iMessage
Shut those annoying conversations up right now.
Photo: Shawn Rossi/Flickr CC

Have you ever had your regular (important) iMessages swamped by a flurry of notifications for that inane group conversations about matcha-flavored KitKats? Or maybe you want to keep your iPad’s notifications switched on, but you want to mute iMessages from your boss until Monday, because she has no concept of boundaries?

If so, you need iMessage’s handy conversation-muting feature. It’s so easy to use that you may have turned it on by mistake. If you’re no longer getting alerts for certain messages, you may want to check this, too.

9 ways to strengthen your Apple products

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Step up your iPhone and Mac security with these tips.
Step up your iPhone and Mac security with these tips.
Photo: Free Photos/Pixabay CC

How to reopen a recently closed tab in Safari on iOS

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Reopen recently closed tabs in Safari.
None of these Tabs is yet open.
Photo: Joe Shlabotnik/Flickr CC

You’ve done it. We’ve all done it. You’ve closed a tab in Safari and instantly realized that it was the wrong one.

It’s not the end of the world. You can open a fresh tab and schlep over to the history panel to hunt down that URL. Or, if you remember something about the title of the page, you can start typing it into Safari’s URL bar and watch for suggestions that match. But there’s a much easier way to access all your recently closed Safari tabs — and it’s just one long-press away.

Set up your new iPhone X the right way

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iphone x dock
Get your new iPhone set up the right way.
Photo: Apple

The new iPhone X is radically different from previous iPhones, but the setup hasn’t changed much at all. The biggest difference from your current  iPhone, is that you’ll be able to take advantage of Automatic Setup. And of course Face ID has ousted Touch ID, so you’ll only have to save one face, instead of several fingers.

Other than that, you may find yourself on familiar ground. So lets take a look at how to set up your new iPhone X the right way.

How to set up your new iPad the right way

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Get your new iPad ready to go in record time  with these tips.
These handy tips and tricks will get you up and running with your new iPad.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Congratulations — you got a new iPad! Whether it’s a high-tech marvel of a new 9.7-inch iPad Pro, the beastly 12.9-inch iPad Pro, a perfectly capable iPad Air 2 or “just” an iPad mini 4, you’ll want such set up your new iPad with the least amount of fuss.

We’re here to help you do just that with a ton of little tips and tweaks that will make sure you’re off and using that new iPad as quickly and easily as possible. From backing up your old iPad (if you had one already) to getting up and running with a brand-new iPad from scratch, we’ve got you covered.

Still wondering which iPad to get? Check out our handy iPad buyer’s guide, as well as our breakdown of the two Pro models.