Design, Programming, Music and Life

Monday, August 13, 2012

How to do a few things that Apple won't usually do for you

As an tech geek who owns a few Apple devices, I have come across many things that Apple support will do for you, and apparently, hackers too. But here is a list of things that you can do that Apple will NOT help you with, and instructions for how to do them.

Syncing apps to your iOS device without iTunes.
There are a few reasons that you might want to do this one, the one we are going with is that you purchased an app or album that is no longer available. If you let iTunes sync your apps and restore from iCloud, there is a good potential that after a restore, that app or album will not be there to download again. The solution for this is to A, use iFunBox or another app like it to sync, backup and restore your apps and music library. The app is free and there is no cost to use it, and as an added bonus, it will also sync all your unsupported music to your device too.

Making your iOS device play nice with your Android devices, syncing mail, notes, etc. even text messages potentially.
The key to this one is actually a company that used to play nice with Apple, but now that they are in the process of dropping Googles services, we have to prove their worth once again. Google has many services that can help with your iOS device. The two that we are going to focus on here are Google's Gmail, and Google Voice. With Gmail, iOS only gives the direct option to sync Mail and a couple others. What you need to do instead, is set up your iOS device to use the Gmail Exchange services, this will allow you to sync your contacts, notes, tasks, mail, etc. To do that, just follow the instructions from Google here: http://support.google.com/mobile/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=138740 The other half of the equation is all about Google Voice, so if you have a carrier that allows, you can have all your calls and texts routed through your Google Voice account, allowing them to also be sent to other devices as well. The Google Voice app is available for both iOS and Android, and it costs nothing to route your calls through Google Voice, so you can have an account without needing to spend your hard earned cash.

Restoring a jailbroken or bricked iOS device back to stock iOS.
The key to this one is simple, DFU mode. So if you ever have an issue or you brick your iPod Touch while jailbreaking it, plug it into a computer with updated Apple Device drivers hold down both the power and the home buttons for a few seconds until the device turns black, then let go of just the power button, while continuing to hold the home button for three seconds after it goes black. If the device shows an apple, try it again, the home button must be held for three seconds on initial power up, otherwise it won't enter DFU mode correctly. The computer you have it plugged into will do the usual USB notification sound when it works, but the screen on the device will be completely black. Load up iTunes and then click the Update or Restore button. That's it.

How to reset the error log for your iOS device's Home button (sometimes making the Home button more responsive)
This is the mythical "Home Button Recalibration" trick, but all it really does is clear an error log on the device. Open any stock app on your iOS device (iTunes, AppStore, Music, Dialer, etc.) and hold the Home button, and the Power button till you see the slide to unlock page. From here, let go of the buttons, and then hold the Home button until the page closes and you see the home screen (Springboard). This will have cleared the error log for you r home button and possibly made it a bit more responsive in the process. If not, you might want to look into clearing out the  junk on your iOS device, or just restoring it and jailbreaking it again.

How to block certain phone calls and texts from getting through
This one requires a jailbroken device to do it yourself, otherwise, some carriers do offer the service for a fee. If you have a jailbroken device though, you can use the iBlacklist app available through Cydia app store. This will allow you to block calls, texts, and much more from ever bothering you. It has worked well for me.