Curious about what you can do with text on your iPhone or iPad? Macworld associate editor Serenity Caldwell offers a few tips in this week's Macworld video.

Download Macworld Video #180

• Format: MPEG-4/H.264

• Resolution: 480 x 272 (iPhone & iPod compatible)

• Size: 2.4 MB

• Length: 1 minute, 44 seconds

Show Notes

These tips include information about dictation, which is only available for the iPhone 4S and third-generation iPad.

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Show transcript

It’s easy to all sorts of things to text on your device: You can read, add, edit, and even dictate it, depending on what app you’re using. Simplenote, a free note-taking app from the app store, allows you to both read and edit text on your device.

Reading text in a note app is much like reading it in the Safari app. Tap on a piece of text, however, and you bring up the keyboard and text controls.

To place your cursor, tap once anywhere within the text, and it moves to the area you’ve specified. To highlight a specific word, tap on it; you then bring up the text contextual menu, where you can cut, copy, paste, suggest a similar word, or define it. If you do something accidentally—say, we cut the word “that” without meaning to—you can restore it by shaking your device to undo.

Once a single word is highlighted, you can highlight multiple words by dragging on either edge of the blue edit handles. You’ll also see a magnified view of the text you’re highlighting, so that you can stop at a particular character if necessary.

If, while typing, you accidentally misspell or garble a word, you can tap the word, then tap “Suggest” for text suggestions on what you meant to type.

You can also dictate sentences and punctuation if you’d rather not type. “But Diana didn’t hear period. Her thoughts were only on the butane torch period.”

Those are just some of the tricks you can do with text on iOS.

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