My iPhone for Seniors, Second Edition (2016)
13. Surfing the Web
In this chapter, you explore the amazing web browsing functionality your iPhone has to offer. Topics include the following:
Setting Safari preferences
Working with multiple websites at the same time
Searching the Web
Saving and organizing bookmarks
Using 3D Touch with Safari
Completing forms on the Web
Signing into websites automatically
The Web has become an integral part of most of our lives. It is often the first step to search for information, make plans (such as travel arrangements), conduct financial transactions, shop, and so much more. Safari on the iPhone puts the entire Web in the palm of your hand. Safari is a full-featured web browser; anything you can do on a website in a browser on a computer can be done with Safari on your iPhone.
The World Wide Web, more commonly called the Web, is a great resource for finding information, making travel arrangements, keeping up with the news, and just about anything else you want to do. Following are some of the more common terms you encounter as you use the Web:
• Web page—This is a collection of information (text and graphics) that is available on the Web. A web page is what you look at when you use the Web.
• Website—This is a collection of web pages that “go together.” For example, most companies and other organizations have websites that contain information they use to help their customers or members, provide services, market and sell their products and services, and so on. A website organizes the web pages it contains and provides the structure you use to move among them.
• Web browser—This is the software you use to view web pages. There are many different web browsers available. Examples include Safari, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox. They all allow you to view and interact with web pages, and each has its own set of features. Some are available on just about every device there is, such as Safari and Google Chrome, while some are limited to certain devices, such as Internet Explorer that only runs on Windows computers.
• Safari—This is the default web browser on your iPhone; it is also the default web browser on Mac computers. You can download and install it on Windows computers, too.
• URL—A Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is a web page’s or website’s “address” on the Web. URLs allow you to direct your web browser to specific locations on the Web. Most URLs you deal with consist of text, such as www.apple.com or www.aarp.org. Some URLs are more complicated because they take you to specific web pages instead of a website. An example of this is: www.aarp.org/health, which takes you to the Health web page on the AARP website. You seldom have to type URLs because you usually access web pages by tapping on links or using a bookmark, but it’s good to know what they are and how to use them.
• Link—A link is a photo or other graphic, text, or other object that has a URL attached to it. When you tap a link, you move to the URL and open the web page associated with it. Most text links are formatted with a color so you can distinguish them from regular text.
• Bookmark—This is a saved location on the Web. When you visit a web page or website, you can save its URL as a bookmark so you can return to it with a just a few taps instead of typing its URL. Safari allows you to save and organize your bookmarks on your iPhone.
• Search engine or search page—The Web contains virtually unlimited information on every topic under the sun. You can use a search engine/page to search for information in which you are interested. There are a number of search engines available, with Google being the most popular. You access a search engine through a web browser. Safari uses Google by default, but you can use any search engine you’d like, such as yahoo.com.
Setting Safari Preferences
The Safari web browser app on your iPhone is set up to work as soon as you turn your iPhone on and connect it to the Internet. You don’t have to change anything in its settings, as explained in this section, until you want to change the way Safari works. I recommend you skip ahead to “Visiting Websites” and get started browsing the Web on your iPhone. If you want to change how Safari works after you’ve started using it, you can come back to this section to make changes.
To make changes to Safari’s settings, you can use the following example steps that show you how to change what happens when you tap and hold on a link on a web page along with the subsequent table that provides a description of the other Safari settings.
To change how web pages open when you tap and hold on a link, perform the following steps:
Tap Settings on the Home screen.
Swipe up the screen.
Swipe up the screen.
Tap Open Links.
Tap In New Tab to have the web pages you are opening appear in a new tab. (You learn about Safari tabs in “Opening New Pages in a New Tab”).
Tap In Background to have web pages you are opening open in the background. (You learn about Safari tabs in “Opening New Pages in the Background”).
Tap Safari. When you tap and hold on a link, the resulting web page opens according to the option you selected in step 6 or 7. You can change other Safari settings using a similar pattern and the description of the options in the following table.
Cookies are data that websites store on the device you use to browse them. Cookies can contain data about you, such as areas you last visited or things in which you are interested. Cookies are typically used to direct you back to these areas or point you to related areas. Most of the time, cookies are harmless and can even be helpful to you, at least from legitimate sites you intentionally visit.
If you’ve used a web browser on a computer before, using Safari on an iPhone is a familiar experience. If you’ve not used a web browser before, don’t worry because using Safari on an iPhone is simple and intuitive.
Using iCloud, you can synchronize your Internet Explorer favorites or Safari bookmarks on a Windows PC—or Safari bookmarks on a Mac—to your iPhone so you have the same set of bookmarks available on your phone that you do on your computer and other devices, and vice versa (refer to Chapter 3, “Setting Up and Using iCloud and Other Online Accounts”). You should enable iCloud’s Safari switch before you start browsing on your iPhone so you avoid typing URLs or recreating bookmarks. When you enable Safari syncing via iCloud, you can also view tabs open in Safari on other devices, such as a Mac or an iPad.
Using Bookmarks to Move to Websites
Using bookmarks you’ve synced via iCloud onto your iPhone makes it easy to get to websites that are of interest to you. You can also create bookmarks on your iPhone (you learn how later in this chapter) and use them just like bookmarks you’ve synced onto the iPhone.
On the iPhone Home screen, tap Safari.
Tap the Bookmarks button.
Back to the Bookmarks
The most recent Bookmarks screen is retained when you move away from Bookmarks and then come back. Each time you open your Bookmarks, you’re at the same place you were when you left it.
Tap the Bookmarks tab (the open book) if it isn’t selected already. (If you don’t see this tab, tap the back button in the upper-left corner of the screen until you do.)
Swipe up or down the list of bookmarks to browse the bookmarks and other folders of bookmarks available to you.
To move to a bookmark, skip to step 10; to open a folder of bookmarks, tap it.
Swipe up or down the folder’s screen to browse the folders and bookmarks it contains.
You can tap a folder to see the bookmarks it contains.
Change Your Mind?
If you decide not to visit a bookmark, tap Done. You return to the page you were previously viewing.
To return to a previous screen, tap the back button in the upper-left corner of the screen, which is labeled with the name of the folder you previously visited (the parent folder); this disappears when you are at the top-level Bookmarks screen
Repeat steps 5–8 until you see a bookmark you want to visit.
Tap the bookmark you want to visit. Safari moves to that website.
You might see two Favorites folders on the Bookmarks screen. The folder marked with a star is the folder you designated, using the Safari settings described previously in this chapter, as the place to store Favorites on your iPhone. If you use Safari on a computer, you can also configure bookmarks and folders of bookmarks on its Bookmarks bar. When these bookmarks are synced from your computer to the iPhone, they might be stored in a folder of bookmarks also called Favorites and shown with the standard folder icon. If you set this synced folder in your iPhone’s Safari settings to also be its Favorites folder, you won’t have to deal with this potentially confusing situation of having two Favorites folders.
Use the information in the section “Viewing Websites” later in this chapter to get information on viewing the web page.
iPhone Web Pages
Some websites have been specially formatted for mobile devices. These typically have less complex information on each page, so they load faster. When you move to a site like this, you might be redirected to the mobile version automatically, or you might be prompted to choose which version of the site you want to visit. On the mobile version, there is typically a link that takes you to the “regular” version, too. (It’s sometimes called the Desktop, Full, or Classic version.) Sometimes the version formatted for handheld devices offers less information or fewer tools than the regular version. Because Safari is a full-featured browser, you can use either version.
Using Your Favorites to Move to Websites
Using the Safari settings described earlier, you can designate a folder of bookmarks as your Favorites. You can get to the folders and bookmarks in your Favorites folder more quickly and easily than navigating to it as described in the previous section. Here’s how to use your Favorites:
On the Home screen, tap Safari. (If you are in Safari and have the Bookmarks screen open, tap Done to close it.)
Tap in the Address/Search bar (if you don’t see the Address/Search bar, tap at the top of the screen to show it). Just below the Address/Search bar are your Favorites (bookmarks and folders of bookmarks). The keyboard opens at the bottom of the screen.
Swipe up and down on your Favorites. The keyboard closes to give you more room to browse.
At the top of the Favorites screen, you might see two more commands. Tap Add to Favorites to add a bookmark to the current site to your Favorites folder. Tap Request Desktop Site if you are currently viewing the mobile version of a site and want to see the “full” version; you move to that version after you tap the command.
To move to a bookmark, tap it and skip to step 8.
To move into a folder, tap it.
Continue browsing your Favorites until you find the bookmark you want to use. Like using the Bookmarks screen, you can tap a folder to move into it, tap a bookmark to move to its website, or tap the back button to move to the previous screen.
Tap the bookmark for the site you want to visit.
Use the information in the section “Viewing Websites” later in this chapter to view the web page.
Typing URLs to Move to Websites
A Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is the Internet address of a web page. URLs can be relatively simple, such as www.apple.com, or they can be quite long and convoluted. The good news is that by using bookmarks, you can save a URL in Safari so you can get back to it using its bookmark (as you learned in the previous two tasks) and thus avoid typing URLs. To use a URL to move to a website, do the following:
On the Home screen, tap Safari. (If you are in Safari and have the Bookmarks screen open, tap Done to close it.)
Tap in the Address/Search bar (if you don’t see the Address/Search bar, tap at the top of the screen). The URL of the current page becomes highlighted, or if you haven’t visited a page, the Address/Search bar is empty.
If an address appears in the Address/Search bar, tap the clear button (x) to remove it.
Type the URL you want to visit. If it starts with www (which almost all URLs do), you don’t have to type “www.” As you type, Safari attempts to match what you are typing to a site you have visited previously and completes the URL for you if it can. Just below the Address/Search bar, Safari presents a list of sites that might be what you are looking for, organized into groups, such as Suggested Websites.
Shortcut for Typing URLs
URLs include a top-level domain code that represents the type of site (theoretically anyway) that URL leads to. Common examples are .com (commercial sites), and .edu (educational sites). To quickly enter a URL’s code, tap and hold the period key to see a menu from which you can select other options, such as .net, or .edu. Select the code you want on the keyboard, and it is entered in the Address/Search bar.
If one of the sites shown is the one you want to visit, tap it. You move to that web page; skip to step 8.
If Safari doesn’t find a match, continue typing until you enter the entire URL.
Tap Go. You move to the web page.
Use the information in the section “Viewing Websites” to view the web page.
Using Your Browsing History to Move to Websites
As you move about the Web, Safari tracks the sites you visit and builds a history list (unless you enabled the Do Not Track option, in which case this doesn’t happen and you can’t use History to return to previous sites). You can use your browsing history list to return to sites you’ve visited.
Tap the Bookmarks button.
If you aren’t on the Bookmarks screen, tap the back button until you move to the Bookmarks screen.
If necessary, swipe down the Bookmarks page until you see the History folder.
Swipe up and down the page to browse all the sites you’ve visited. The more recent sites appear at the top of the screen; the further you move down the screen, the further back in time you go. Earlier sites are collected in folders for various times, such as This Morning, or Monday Afternoon.
Tap the site you want to visit. The site opens and you can use the information in the section “Viewing Websites” to view the web page.
Erasing the Past
To clear your browsing history, tap the Clear button at the bottom of the History screen. At the prompt, tap the timeframe that you want to clear; the options are The last hour, Today, Today & Yesterday, or All history. Your browsing history for the period of time you selected is erased. (Don’t you wish it was this easy to erase the past in real life?)
Even though your iPhone is a small device, you’ll be amazed at how well it displays web pages designed for larger screens.
Use Safari to move to a web page as described in the previous tasks.
Where Did the URL Go?
When you first move to a URL, you see that URL in the Address/Search bar. After you work with a site, the URL is replaced with the high-level domain name for the site (such as sitename.com, sitename.edu, etc.). To see the full URL again, tap the Address/Search bar.
To browse around a web page, swipe your finger right or left, or up or down.
To zoom in manually, unpinch your fingers.
To zoom in automatically, tap your finger on the screen twice.
To zoom out manually, pinch your fingers.
To zoom on a column or a figure, tap it twice.
To move to a link, tap it once. Links can come in many forms including text (most text that is a link is in color and underlined), or graphics. The web page to which the link points opens and replaces the page currently being displayed.
Do More with Links
To see options for a link, tap and hold your finger down for a second or so. When you lift your finger, a menu appears. Tap Open to open the page to replace the current page at which the link points (this is the same as tapping a link once). Tap Open in Background to open the page in a new Safari window that opens in the background, or tap Open in New Tab to open the new page in a new tab. The command that appears depends on the Open Links Safari setting. Tap Add to Reading List to add the page to your Reading List. If the link is an image, tap Save Image to save the image on your phone. Tap Copy to copy the link’s URL so that you can paste it elsewhere, such as in an email message. Tap Cancel to return to the current page and take no action.
To view the web page in landscape orientation, rotate the iPhone so that it is horizontal.
Scroll, zoom in, and zoom out on the page to read it, as described in steps 2–7.
To refresh a page, tap Refresh. (Note: while a page is loading, this is the “x” button; tap it to stop the rest of the page from loading.)
To move to a previous page you’ve visited, tap the back button (left-facing arrow).
To move to a subsequent page, tap the forward button (right-facing arrow).
As you move around, the Address/Search bar at the top of the page and the toolbar at the bottom of the page are hidden automatically; to show them again, tap the top or bottom of the screen (on the iPhone 6 and 6s Plus, tap the top of the screen when the phone is horizontal).
Different Phones, Different Look
The type of iPhone you are using to browse the Web affects how pages look and where controls are located. For example, when you use an iPhone 5s, you see black at the top and bottom of the screen while you see white there on an iPhone 6. Also, when you rotate an iPhone 5s, the tools are at the top and bottom of the screen, while on an iPhone 6, the controls are all at the top of the screen.
Working with Multiple Websites at the Same Time
When you move to a web page by using a bookmark, typing a URL, or tapping a link on the current web page, the new web page replaces the current one. However, you can also open and work with multiple web pages at the same time so that a new web page doesn’t replace the current one.
When you work with multiple web pages, each open page appears in its own tab. You can use the tab view to easily move to and manage your open web pages. You can also close open tabs, and you can even open web pages that are open on other devices on which your iCloud account has been configured and Safari syncing enabled.
Tapping Without Holding
When you tap, but don’t hold down a link on a web page, the web page to which the link points opens and replaces the current web page—no new tab is created. When you tap and hold a link, the behavior is determined by the setting you chose in the preferences as covered in a task earlier in this chapter (“Setting Safari Preferences”).
Opening New Pages in the Background
If you enabled the In Background option for the Open Links preference, you can open new web pages by doing the following:
Tap and hold on the link you want to open in the background.
Tap Open in Background. The page to which the link points opens. The only result you see is the page “jumping” down to the Tab Manager button in the lower-right corner of the screen.
Continue opening pages in the background; see “Using Tab View to Manage Open Web Pages” to learn how to use the tab view to move to pages that are open in the background.
Opening New Pages in a New Tab
If you enabled the In New Tab option for the Open Links preference, you can open new pages by doing the following:
Tap and hold on the link you want to open in a new tab.
Tap Open in New Tab. A new tab opens and displays the page to which the link points. The web page from which you started moves into the background.
Continue opening pages; see “Using Tab View to Manage Open Web Pages” to learn how to use the tab view to manage your open pages.
Just Open It
If you tap the Open command on the menu in step 2 of the previous tasks, the new web page replaces the one you were viewing on the current tab. This is the same as just tapping a link on the page rather than tapping and holding on it.
Using Tab View to Manage Open Web Pages
As you open new pages, whether in the background or not, new tabs are opened. Safari’s tab view enables you to view and work with your open pages/tabs. Here’s how:
Tap the tab view button. Each open page appears on its own tab.
Swipe up or down on the open tabs to browse them.
Tap a tab/page to move into it. The page opens and fills the Safari window.
Work with the web page.
Tap the tab view button.
To close a tab, click its close button or swipe to the left on the tab you want to close. That page/tab closes.
To open a new tab, tap the Add button (+) to create a new tab that shows your Favorites screen; navigate to a new page in that tab using the tools you’ve already learned in other tasks (tapping bookmarks, or typing a URL).
To close the tab view, tap Done. The tab view closes, and the page you were most recently viewing is shown.
Tabs Are Independent
Each tab is independent. So, when you are working with a tab and use the back/forward buttons to move among its pages, you are just moving among the pages open under that tab. Pages open in other tabs are not affected.
Keep Private Things Private
If you aren’t browsing in Private mode and tap the Private button at the bottom of the tab view, Safari moves into Private mode and stops tracking the sites you visit. Tap the button again to return to the previous state. If you are browsing in Private mode, tapping the Private button shows or hides the tabs in the tab view.
Searching the Web
In the first task of this chapter, you learned that you can set Safari to search the Web using Google, Yahoo!, Bing, or DuckDuckGo. No matter which search engine you chose, you search the Web in the same way.
Tap in the Address/Search bar. The keyboard appears along with your Favorites.
If there is any text in the Address/Search bar, tap the clear button.
Type your search word(s). As you type, Safari attempts to find a search that matches what you typed. The list of suggestions is organized in sections, which depend on what you are searching for and the search options you configured through Safari settings. One section, labeled with the search engine you are using (such as Google Search), contains the search results from that source. Other sections can include Bookmarks and History, or Apps (from the App Store). At the bottom of the list is the On This Page section, which shows the terms that match your search on the page you are browsing.
Quick Website Search
If you enabled the Quick Website Search feature, you can include the site you want to search in the Address/Search bar, such as “Wiki F-15.” When you do this, the results from the site you entered appear at the top of the list and you can access them directly by tapping the information that appears (as opposed to having to move to the search engine site first as in these steps).
To perform the search using one of the suggestions provided, tap the suggestion you want to use. The search is performed and you can skip to step 6.
If none of the suggestions are what you want, keep typing until you have entered the entire search term, and then tap Go. The search engine you use performs the search and displays the results on the search results page.
Use the search results page to view the results of your search. These pages work just like other web pages. You can zoom, scroll, and tap links to explore results.
Searching on a Web Page
To search for words or phrases on a web page you are viewing, perform these steps, except in step 4, tap the word or phrase for which you want to search in the On This Page section (you may have to swipe up the screen to see this section). You return to the page you are browsing and each occurrence of your search term on the page is highlighted.
Saving and Organizing Bookmarks
In addition to moving bookmarks from iCloud onto your iPhone, you can save new bookmarks directly in your iPhone (they are synced onto other devices, too). You can also organize bookmarks on your iPhone to make them easier and faster to access.
When you want to make it easy to return to a website, create a bookmark. Do the following to create a new bookmark:
Move to a web page for which you want to save a bookmark.
Tap the Share button.
Tap Add Bookmark. The Add Bookmark screen appears.
Edit the bookmark’s name as needed, or tap the Clear button (x) to erase the current name, and then type the new name of the bookmark. The titles of some web pages are quite long, so it’s a good idea to shorten them so the bookmark’s name is easier to read on the iPhone’s screen and you can fit more bookmarks on the screen.
Tap LOCATION. The LOCATION section expands and you see all of the folders of bookmarks on your phone. The folder that is currently selected is marked with a check mark.
Swipe up and down the screen to find the folder in which you want to place the new bookmark. You can choose any folder on the screen; folders are indented when they are contained within other folders.
To choose a folder in which to store the new bookmark, tap it. You return to the Add Bookmark screen, which shows the location you selected.
Tap Save. The bookmark is created and saved in the location you specified. You can use the bookmark to return to the website at any time.
It’s Not All Good
Unfortunately, bookmarks that you create on the iPhone are useful on the computer to which they are synced only if you use Internet Explorer or Safari (Windows PC) or Safari (Mac). If you use Firefox, Chrome, or another web browser, the bookmarks moved onto the computer from the iPhone are of little value to you because they appear in only one of the supported browsers (Internet Explorer or Safari). You can make them available in other browsers, but that requires going through extra gyrations, which can negate the value of syncing.
You’ve seen how bookmarks can be contained in folders, which is a good thing because you’re likely to have a lot of them. You can change the names and locations of your existing bookmarks and folders as follows:
Move to the Bookmarks screen showing the bookmarks and folders you want to change. (You can’t move among the Bookmarks screens while you are in Edit mode so you need to start at the location where the items you want to change are located.)
Tap Edit. Unlock buttons appear next to the folders and bookmarks you can change; some folders, such as the History folder, can’t be changed. The order icons also appear on the right side of the screen, again only for folders or bookmarks you can change.
Touch the order icon next to the bookmark or folder you want to move and drag it up or down the screen to change the order in which it appears on the screen. When you drag a folder or bookmark between other items, they slide apart to make room for the folder or bookmark you are dragging. The order of the items in the list is the order in which they appear on the Bookmarks screen.
To change the name or location of a folder, tap it.
If you have only one bookmark you’ve added, you can’t move them around as described here because Safari won’t let you “disturb” the default bookmarks and folders (such as Favorites and History). You can only delete default bookmarks.
Change the name in the name bar.
To change the location of the folder, tap the Location bar, which shows the folder’s current location.
Swipe up and down the list of folders until you see the folder in which you want to place the folder you are working with.
Tap the folder into which you want to move the folder you are editing.
Tap the back button. You move back to the prior Bookmarks screen, which reflects any changes you made.
Tap a bookmark you want to change.
Editing a Bookmark
If the bookmark you want to change isn’t on the Bookmarks screen you are currently viewing, tap Done to exit Edit mode. Then open the folder containing the bookmark you want to change and tap Edit. You are able to change the bookmark.
Change the bookmark’s name in the name bar.
If you want to change a bookmark’s URL, tap the URL bar and make changes to the current URL. For example, you might want to change it to have the bookmark point to a site’s home page rather than the page you are viewing.
To change the location of the folder or bookmark, tap the Location bar and follow steps 7 and 8.
Tap Done. You move back to the previous screen, and any changes you made—such as changing the name or location of a bookmark—are reflected.
You can’t change default bookmarks, you can only delete them.
To create a new folder, tap New Folder.
Enter the name of the folder.
Follow steps 6–8 to choose the location in which you want to save the new folder.
Tap Done. The new folder is created in the location you selected. You can place folders and bookmarks into it by using the Location bar to navigate to it.
Tap Done. Your changes are saved and you exit Edit mode.
Browsing Both Ways
As you browse, make sure you try both the horizontal and vertical orientations. Safari sometimes offers different features in the two orientations on different models. For example, when you open the Bookmarks screen and rotate an iPhone 6 Plus or 6s Plus, the screen is divided into two panes. On the left is the Bookmarks pane you are viewing while the right pane shows the web page you were browsing. If you tap a bookmark, the web page in the right pane becomes the page at which the bookmark points.
Deleting Bookmarks or Folders of Bookmarks
You can get rid of bookmarks or folders of bookmarks you don’t want any more by deleting them:
Move to the screen containing the folder or bookmark you want to delete.
Swipe to the left on the folder or bookmark you want to delete.
Tap Delete. The folder or bookmark is deleted. Note that when you delete a folder, all the bookmarks it contains are deleted, too.
Creating Bookmarks on the Home Screen
You can add a bookmark icon to a Home screen so that you can visit a web page from there; this handy trick saves you several navigation moves that would be required to move into Safari and type the URL or use a bookmark to get to the page you want to see.
Use Safari to move to a web page to which you want to have easy access from the Home screen.
Tap the Share button.
Tap Add to Home Screen.
If needed, edit the name of the icon that will appear on the Home screen. The default name is the name of the web page. It’s best to edit it to a shorter name because it has a small amount of room on its icon on the Home screen.
Tap Add. You move to the Home screen and see the icon you added (it is added to the last page of your Home screen). You can return to the site at any time by tapping this button.
Location Is Everything
You can organize the buttons on the pages of the Home screen so that you can place your web page buttons in convenient locations, and you can create folders on your Home screens to keep your web page icons neat and tidy there, too. Refer to Chapter 5, “Customizing How Your iPhone Looks and Sounds,” for details.
Using 3D Touch with Safari (iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus Only)
New! Like other default iPhone apps, Safari supports 3D Touch, which you can use in a couple of ways.
When you press on the Safari app’s icon, you see the Quick Actions menu. You can select from among its options to quickly perform actions in Safari. For example, choose New Tab to open a new tab in which you can navigate to a web page, or choose Show Bookmarks to jump to the Bookmarks page.
When you are browsing links, such as when you have performed a search, or your bookmarks, press on a link or a bookmark in which you are interested to perform a Peek on it. In the Peek window, you see the web page for the link or web page on which you peeked. If you continue to press on the Peek, it pops open so you can view the web page in Safari. When you perform a Peek on some screens, such as the links resulting from a search, you see an upward-facing arrow at the top of the screen; this indicates you can swipe up the screen to reveal a menu of commands. Tap a command to perform it. For example, tap Open in New Tab to open the web page in a new tab in Safari.
Completing Forms on the Web
Just like web browsers on a computer, you often have to complete forms on your iPhone, such as to log in to your account on a website or request information about something. You can manually enter information or use AutoFill to have Safari add the information for you. (AutoFill must be enabled using Safari settings, as described at the beginning of this chapter.)
Manually Completing Forms
To manually fill in a form, do the following:
Open Safari and move to a website containing a form.
Zoom in on the fields you need to complete.
Tap in a field. If you tapped a text field, the keyboard appears.
Enter the information in the field. (If the site suggests information you want to enter, just tap it to enter it. You might have to tap Done to temporarily hide the keyboard to see all the suggestions. If a suggestion isn’t the information you want to enter, just keep typing.)
Tap the next button. If there isn’t another field on the form, this button is disabled, so skip this step. If it is enabled, you move to the next field on the form.
You can select, instead of type, some types of information. For example, when you are entering an address, you usually choose a state or province from a list. And you often choose dates rather than typing them. When you see a downward-facing arrow in a field, tap it to choose that information or just move into a field that you select like any other. The selection tool replaces the keyboard at the bottom of the screen. Swipe on the wheels or use the other tools in this area to select the data you want to enter.
Repeat steps 4 and 5 to complete all the fields on the form.
Tap Done. If it’s open, the keyboard closes and you move back to the web page.
Tap Next, Continue, Submit, Go, Login, or whatever button is provided to send the form’s information to the website.
Using AutoFill to Complete Forms
AutoFill makes completing forms faster and easier because Safari can enter information for you with the tap of a button.
Open Safari and move to a website containing a form. Zoom in on the fields you need to complete, and tap in a field. If you tapped a text field, the keyboard appears.
Tap AutoFill. Safari fills in any fields it can, based on the information you designate when you configure AutoFill to use your contact information. Any fields that Safari completes are highlighted in yellow.
Use the steps shown in the preceding task to review all the fields and to type in what AutoFill wasn’t able to complete or edit those that AutoFill completed but that need to be changed.
For AutoFill to work, it must be enabled in the Safari settings as described at the beginning of the chapter. If the data AutoFill enters is not correct, use the Safari settings to choose your correct contact info.
Signing In to Websites Automatically
If you enable Safari to remember usernames and passwords, it can enter this information for you automatically. When Safari encounters a site for which it recognizes and can save login information, you are prompted to allow Safari to save that information. This doesn’t work with all sites; if you aren’t prompted to allow Safari to save login information, you can’t use this feature with that site. When saved, this information can be entered for you automatically.
Move to a web page that requires you to log in to an account.
Enter your account’s username and password.
Tap the button to log in to your account, such as Continue, Sign In, Submit, Login, and such. You are prompted to save the login information.
To save the information, tap Save Password. The next time you move to the login page, your username and password are entered for you automatically. Tap Never for This Website if you don’t want the information to be saved and you don’t want to be prompted again. Tap Not Now if you don’t want the information saved but do want to be prompted again later to save it.
>>>Go Further: Letting Safari Create Passwords for You
If you have enabled the Names and Passwords setting, Safari can create passwords for you. Go to a website that requires you to create a password, such as when you register for a new account. When you tap in a field that Safari recognizes as requiring a password, tap Suggest Password. Safari presents a password for you; most of these are not easy to remember, but that doesn’t matter because it is saved for you automatically so you won’t have to enter it manually. If you want to use the recommended password, tap Use Suggested Password; Safari enters the password in the password and verify password fields. When syncing is enabled, the password is stored on the synced devices, too, so you are able to sign in from those devices just as easily.