November 28, 2011

Tips & Tricks For Your Device: Setting up Notifications Center

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Labels: author's note, communications, #iOS 5, notifications, iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, tips



You receive dozens (maybe even hundreds) of emails, messages, news, calendar alerts and so forth every day. Some of these items are important to you on a "Need-to-know immediately!" basis. Other communications can just wait until you have time to view them at the end of the day. You need to sort out by priority those which notifications must be viewed on your device, whether in lock mode or not. How can you customize a list of which apps notify you when news or important information arrives, and by a method ensuring either visibility or privacy?


- There are several ways you can receive notifications on your device: from high visibility with alerts, badges, banners and sounds to none of those at all. It depends on your preference as to what information you consider high or low priority. Your iPhone and iPad Notifications Center keeps you updated the second news of any kind arrives on your device.

Go to Settings and tap Notifications where you'll see all the choices available to you. First of all, you may set the Notifications Manually, or By Time received. Underneath that is a box labeled "In Notification Center". Here you will find all your apps which send out push notifications. Go through each to customize as to how you'll receive their alerts. Tap the app name then set Notification Center On or Off. You may now select your Alert Style by using None, Banners (thin strips of info at the top of your display) or Alerts (more detailed information on your screen if privacy is not an issue). Additionally, you may toggle On/Off to have a Badge Icon (which displays the number of notifications received), or to View in Lock Screen the actual notification.

For privacy reasons, I don't want text messages displayed on my Lock Screen so I do not use Banners or Alerts, only number Badges. However, breaking news from CNN or other generic items I definitely want to see so I use Banners or Alerts which can also be viewed in lock screen, along with Sounds. The Weather Widget and Stock Widget come only with the option to toggle On/Off. Other apps with Notifications which you don't care to be informed about, are shown underneath the active ones in a separate box titled Not in Notification Center. These remain here until you Turn On Notifications for each at some point in the future.

You can further customize your Notifications by tapping Edit on the top right of your display and moving the items around in the order in which you want to see them, particularly if you have chosen to view your Notifications Manually. Lastly, remember to view all your Notifications at any time, simply swipe from top to bottom of your display for the Notification screen to appear.

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