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In this series on productivity, author Jess Stratton takes you through the latest tools that will help you run your business and life more efficiently. Each installment covers a particular feature or technique in a different online tool, such as Google Apps, Skype, YouTube, Mint.com, Etsy, and more. Check back every Monday for tips on topics from recording and publishing video chats to managing your finances online.
My name is Jess Stratton and welcome to Monday Productivity Pointers. One of my favorite aspects of my iPhone is the ability to add location awareness to my reminders. This means I can have my iPhone's reminders be triggered by events, such as when I get home or when I'm leaving my mother's house. Which is great if you need to do something as soon as you get home, or if you're at a friend or relative's house and left some food in the fridge and want to be reminded to take it home when you leave. Just keep in mind that right now location based awareness for reminders is only available on the iPhone not the iPad.
So if you're struggling with it on the iPad, it's because functionality just doesn't exist yet. But location reminders work hand in hand with your contacts. So to use reminders based on your home, you first need to add yourself in as a contact including your home address. So once you've done that, fill in as much information as you can such as your email addresses, phone numbers and any addresses. It will all help you. So now on the iPhone, I mean settings, I'm going to tap General. Tap Siri, and look at the My Info tab. You want to tap that area and make sure that you set the contact to the one that you just added for yourself.
So now Siri knows that you contain all that contact information that you put in. So now you can start talking to Siri and use terms like remind me when I leave home to pack my laptop. As soon as you walk out the door and get a general distance from that location, your reminder to pack your laptop will pop up. So now you don't have to worry about forgetting things. You can also add relationships that way. Start by adding your mother as a contact. Let's say my mothers name is Anne Smith and then tell Siri in a straight forward manner, Anne Smith is my mother".
The relationship will be set and now you can tell Siri to call your mother or remind you when you arrive at your mothers house to do something. So, knowing this, how can it help you in other ways? For one, and this is the way I love to use it, you can have your grocery list or some items from the grocery list popup when you arrive at the grocery store. The key to remember is that all these places have to be contacts first. So you first have to add that grocery store as a contact, so I'm going to show you an easy way to start adding in all your local favorite shops and vendors.
The first thing that we're going to do is go into Apple Maps. So, you want to start searching for all your local grocery stores and vendors, and then we'll add the missed contacts easily from here. So I'm going to type in, a vendor, a grocery store that I like to go to. And once it finds it, click the blue arrow to expand the listing. It's going to give you the address and the phone number on the homepage, but what I'm interested in, if I scroll down, is the Add to Contacts button.
I can tap, Add to Contacts. And then I'll create a new contact. I'll put it in, tap Done. And then I can go back to map, and continue to do that for any other vendors. Or anything that I think I'd like to start adding location based reminders to. Once it's in there, now all I have to do is tell Siri, remind me when I get to Shaw's to get eggs. From there on in, it's going to be set as a location based reminder. And when I enter this address or a near proximity to this address, my reminder will pop up on my phone and I'll never forget anything again.
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