One of the most useful features of the iOS 5 update is the ability to define shortcuts to frequently used words and phrases. My favourite use so far has been to create a shortcut to enter my e-mail address.

Access the Settings

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Access the iDevice settings. Obviously your screen will differ to mine!

General Settings

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Access the General section of the settings.

Keyboard Settings

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Access the Keyboard section of the General Settings.

Keyboard Settings – Shortcuts

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Scroll down to the very bottom of the Keyboard Settings and you will see at least one shortcut created by default by the system – omw which expands to On My Way!

Click Add New Shortcut…

New Shortcut Settings

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Enter the phrase to be added and optionally a shortcut to access the phrase with

Adding a New Shortcut

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Here I have added my e-mail address to the Phrase field (1) and a shortcut of "ema" to the Shortcut field (2).

Click Save to return to the Keyboard Settings.

Viewing the New Shortcut

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The new shortcut is displayed in the Keyboard Settings (1)

Using Your New Shortcut – 1

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Your new shortcut can be used in any iOS App.

Here typing the shortcut "ema" in the Notes App displays a post-it note offering the full text of the shortcut phrase (1).

If the shortcut you’ve specified is an actual word or you just don’t want to expand it tap the small cross on the post-it note to dismiss the shortcut suggestion (2).

Using Your New Shortcut – 2

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Tapping return or using any punctuation will automatically expand your new shortcut.