Using Your iPad as an E-reader - Just for Fun - iPad All-in-One For Dummies, 7th Edition (2015)

iPad All-in-One For Dummies, 7th Edition (2015)

Book II. Just for Fun

Chapter 7. Using Your iPad as an E-reader

In This Chapter

arrow Discovering how iPad differs from other e-readers

arrow Finding and buying books at iBooks

arrow Navigating a book

arrow Working with bookmarks, highlights, and the dictionary

arrow Organizing books in collections

arrow Experiencing periodicals with Newsstand

Apple has touted the iPad as a great e-reader, so though it isn’t a traditional dedicated e-reader device like the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, you won’t want to miss out on this cool functionality.

Apple’s preinstalled iBooks app is what turns your iPad into an e-reader. iBooks is an application that enables you to buy and download books from Apple’s iBooks Store and other e-book sources, as well as to read PDF files. You can also use several other free e-reader apps, for example Kindle or Stanza, to download books to your iPad from a variety of online sources, such as Amazon and Google, so you can read to your heart’s content.

Another preinstalled app, Newsstand, has a similar look and feel to iBooks, but its focus is on subscribing to and reading magazines, newspapers, and other periodicals.

In this chapter, you discover the options available for reading material, and I tell you how to buy books and subscribe to periodicals. You also find out how to navigate a book or periodical and adjust the brightness and type, as well as how to search books and organize your iBooks and Newsstand libraries.

Discovering How the iPad Differs from Other E-readers

An e-reader is any electronic device that enables you to download and read books, magazines, PDF files, or newspapers, as well as documents such as manuals or reports. Some e-readers use E Ink technology to create a paperlike reading experience. These devices, such as Kindle Paperwhite, are portable and typically dedicated only to reading electronic content.

The iPad is a bit different: As you know, it isn’t used for only reading books, and it allows you to download other e-reader apps such as Kindle in addition to the preinstalled iBooks app. Also, the iPad doesn’t offer the paper-like reading experience — you read from a computer screen (though you can adjust the brightness of the screen and change its background color).

When you buy a book or magazine online (or get one of many free publications), it downloads to your iPad in a few seconds using your Wi-Fi or 3G/4G connection. After you have your e-reader app and some content, iPad offers several navigation tools to move around an electronic book, all of which you explore in this chapter.

iBooks contains tools for reading and interacting with book content. The development of books with interactive content has so far been targeted primarily at the textbook market, and you can even create and publish your own interactive textbooks using a Mac app called iBooks Author.

Finding and Buying E-books

Before you can read books or other publications, you have to get your iPad’s hands on them (so to speak). This involv0es downloading e-reader software and then using it or online stores to buy publications. I start by introducing you to iBooks, the e-reader that came preinstalled on your iPad.

tip.eps You can also buy content on your computer and sync your purchases to your iPad using iTunes or iCloud. See Book I, Chapter 5 for more about this topic.

Finding books at the iBooks Store

You can shop using Apple’s iBooks Store by tapping the iBooks app on the Home screen to open it.

tip.eps If you become addicted to iBooks, consider placing it in the iPad Dock for quick access from any Home screen. To do this, tap and hold the app till all apps jiggle, and then tap and drag the iBooks app to the Dock. Press the Home button, and the jiggling stops.

9781118944417-ma021.tif The iBooks Library opens (see Figure 7-1). The first time you use it, you see a bookshelf with no books on it. (If you don’t see the bookshelf, tap the My Books button to go there. Note that any PDF documents you download don’t appear on this bookshelf; you have to tap the PDF Collection to view them (more about Collections later).


Figure 7-1: Your virtual iBooks bookshelf.

Tap the Featured button at the bottom of the screen. In the iBooks Store, shown in Figure 7-2, featured titles are shown by default. These consist of several rows of books in categories such as Hot This Week and Popular on iBooks.


Figure 7-2: Use various links and tools to find the content you want.

Try any of the following methods to find a book:

· Tap the Search field at the top right of the screen and type a search word or phrase using the onscreen keyboard.

· Tap the Categories button at the upper left of the screen and scroll down to browse links to popular categories of books, as shown in Figure 7-3.


Figure 7-3: Find your publication using Categories.

· Tap See All on the right side above different categories of books to view all titles in a category.

· Tap the appropriate button at the bottom of the screen to view categories: The New York Times bestsellers list; books listed on Top Charts; and Top Authors.

· Tap Purchased at the bottom of the screen to see any books you’ve bought on devices signed in with the same Apple ID. You can tap the All tab to show content from all devices or tap the Not on This iPad tab to see only content purchased on other devices.

tip.eps Scroll to the bottom of many screens to access Quick Links, which include shortcuts to Best of the Month, Free Books, and Award Winners.

· Tap a suggested selection or featured book to display more information about it.

tip.eps To avoid buyer’s remorse, you can sometimes download free samples before you buy. If the publisher provides a sample, you get to read several pages of the book to see whether it appeals to you, and it doesn’t cost you a dime! Look for the Get Sample button when you view details about a book to get your free preview.

Exploring other e-readers

Though iBooks can handle content from many ePub sources, such as Google and Project Gutenberg, you may prefer to explore the tools offered by other e-readers. Your iPad is capable of using other e-reader apps to display book content from other bookstores, so you can get books from sources other than iBooks Store. To do so, first download another e-reader application such as Kindle from Amazon or the Barnes & Noble Nook from the iPad App Store. (See Book I, Chapter 5 for how to download apps.) You can also download a non-vendor-specific app such as Bluefire Reader, which handles ePub and PDF format, as well as most formats that public libraries use. Then use that application’s features to search for, purchase, and download content.

The Kindle e-reader application is shown in Figure 7-4. After downloading the free app from the App Store, you just open the app, go to the Amazon Kindle Store and enter the email address associated with your Amazon account and password. Any content you have already bought from Amazon for the Kindle is archived online and can be downloaded using your Kindle app on your iPad for you to read anytime you like. Use features such as changing the background to a sepia tone or changing the font to enhance your reading experience. Tap the Device tab to see titles stored on your iPad. To delete a book from this e-reader, just press the title with your finger, and the Remove from Device button appears.


Figure 7-4: Kindle was one of the first free e-reader apps for iPad.

tip.eps You can also get content from a variety of other sources: Project Gutenberg (, Google, some publishers like Baen (, and so on. Get the content using your computer if you want and then just add it to Books in iTunes and sync to your iPad.

tip.eps You can also sync books you’ve downloaded to your computer to your iPad by syncing to the computer and your iTunes account. Using this method, you can find lots of free books from various sources online, as long as they’re in the ePub or PDF format, and drag them into your iTunes Books Library; then simply sync them to your iPad. If you have a Mac you can just drag the books directly into your connected iPad. See Book I, Chapter 5 for more about syncing. You can also download books from the web and use an online file-sharing site such as Dropbox to make them available to iBooks via an Internet connection, or right-click a title and select Open In to send a book to your iPad.

Buying iBooks

If you have set up an account with iTunes, you can buy books at the iBooks Store easily using the iBooks app. (See Book I, Chapter 5 for more about iTunes.) To buy a book, follow these steps:

1. When you find a book in the iBooks Store that you want to buy, tap it, and then tap its price button, as shown in Figure 7-5.


Figure 7-5: Tap the price to begin the buying process.

The button changes to a Buy Book button, as shown in Figure 7-6. (If the book is free, these buttons are labeled Free and Get Book, respectively.)


Figure 7-6: Tap the Buy Book button to buy the book.

2. Tap the Buy Book (or Get Book) button.

If you haven’t already signed in, the iTunes Password dialog appears.

3. Enter your password and tap OK.

The book appears on your bookshelf, and the cost is charged to whichever payment method you specified when you opened your iTunes account — or the cost is deducted from your store credit, if you have a balance.

tip.eps If you have signed in, your purchase is accepted immediately. No returns are allowed, so tap carefully!

new_ipad.eps With Family Sharing, as many as six people can make purchases for iOS devices, including e-books, using the same credit card. See Book II, Chapter 1 for more about setting up Family Sharing.

Experiencing E-reading

After you have an e-book in iBooks, put on some music, settle back in a comfortable chair, and read it. Luckily, reading an e-book is just as easy as (or perhaps easier than) reading a paperback. The next section shows how to do it.

Navigating an e-book

Here are the simple steps involved in making your way around an e-book using the iBooks e-reader:

1. Tap iBooks, and if your Library (the bookshelf) isnt already displayed, tap the My Books button.

2. Tap an e-book to open it.

The book opens, as shown in Figure 7-7. Note that if the book is stored online, which you can discern by the cloud and down-arrow icon in its top-right corner, downloading it to your iPad may take a few moments. (If you hold your iPad in portrait orientation, it shows one page; if it’s in landscape orientation, it shows two by default.)


Figure 7-7: Landscape orientation on the iPad.

3. Take any of these actions to navigate the book:

· 9781118944417-ma022.tif To go to the books Table of Contents: Tap the Table of Contents button near the top-left corner of the page (it looks like a little bulleted list) to go to the book’s Table of Contents (see Figure 7-8) and then tap the name of a chapter to go to that chapter.

· To turn to the next page: Tap your finger anywhere on the right edge of a page.


Figure 7-8: Use this virtual Table of Contents to go where you like in your e-book.

· To turn to the preceding page: Tap your finger anywhere on the left edge of a page.

· To move to another page in the book: Tap and drag the slider at the bottom of the page to the right or left.

tip.eps To return to the Library to view another book at any time, tap the Library button. If the button isn’t visible, tap anywhere on the page, and the tools appear.

Adjusting brightness

iPad doesn’t offer a simulated page surface as some dedicated e-readers such as most Kindle e-readers do, so it’s important that you make the reading experience as comfortable on your eyes as possible by adjusting the brightness.

iBooks offers an adjustable brightness setting that you can use to make your book pages comfortable for you to read. Follow these steps to make an adjustment:

1. With a book open, tap the Display button, which is represented by a capital and lowercase A, as shown in Figure 7-9.

A dialog containing the iBooks Brightness slider and other settings appears.


Figure 7-9: The Fonts button gives you access to a wealth of settings.

2. Tap and drag the slider (see Figure 7-10) to the right to make the screen brighter or to the left to dim it.


Figure 7-10: Adjusting brightness can ease eyestrain.

3. Tap anywhere in the book to close the Display dialog.

Experiment with the brightness that works for you. It’s commonly thought that bright white computer screens are hard on the eyes, so setting the brightness to halfway (default) or below or choosing a sepia background is probably a good idea. Changing background color is covered in the next task.

Changing the page background and font size and type

If the type on your screen is a bit small for your taste, you can change to a larger font size or choose a different font for readability. Follow these steps:

1. With a book open, tap the Display button.

It sports a small letter a and a large capital A, as shown in Figure 7-11.


Figure 7-11: Need larger type? Set that up here.

2. In the Display dialog that appears, tap the small letter a button on the left to use smaller text, or tap the button labeled with the capital A on the right to use larger text.

3. Tap the Fonts button.

The list of fonts, as shown in Figure 7-12, appears. This list may vary slightly if Apple adds more or you’re using a language other than English on your iPad.


Figure 7-12: Though limited, a selection of fonts is available in iBooks.

4. Tap a font name to select it.

The font changes on the book page.

5. Tap White, Sepia, or Night to choose the theme you want to display.

If you want to have a sepia tint on the pages or to reverse black and white, which can be easier on the eyes, you can change from the default White setting to one of these. Turning Auto-Night Theme to On lets your iPad determine whether you’re reading in dimmer light and adjust to the Night theme accordingly.

6. Tap outside the Display dialog to return to your book.

tip.eps Some fonts appear a bit larger on your screen than others because of their design. If you want the largest font, use Iowan.

tip.eps If you’re reading a PDF file, you’re reading a picture of a document rather than an electronic book, so be aware that you can’t modify the page’s appearance using the Display dialog.

Searching in your book

You may want to find a certain sentence or reference in your book. To search for a word or phrase, follow these steps:

1. With a book displayed, tap the Search button shown in Figure 7-13.

The onscreen keyboard appears.


Figure 7-13: Find the content you need using the iBooks Search feature.

2. Enter a search term or tap the Dictation key and speak the search term; then tap the Search key on the keyboard.

iBooks searches for any matching entries.

3. Use your finger to scroll down the entries (see Figure 7-14), and tap one to go to that spot in the book.

You can use either the Search Google or Search Wikipedia button at the bottom of the Search popover if you want to search for information about the search term online.

tip.eps You can also search for other instances of a particular word while in the book pages by pressing on and holding the word and then tapping Search on the list that appears.


Figure 7-14: Find a spot in your e-book.

Using bookmarks and highlights

Bookmarks and highlights in your e-books are like favorites that you may be familiar with saving in your web browser: They enable you to revisit a favorite page or refresh your memory about a character or plot point. Note that iBooks can retain these bookmarks and highlights across iDevices and Macs.

To add and use bookmarks and highlights, follow these steps:

1. With a book open to a page you want to bookmark, tap the Bookmark button (the red ribbon) in the upper-right corner, as shown in Figure 7-15.

A colored bookmark is placed on the right-hand page.


Figure 7-15: Assign a bookmark to a page.

2. To highlight a word or phrase, press on the text.

The contextual menu shown in Figure 7-16 appears.

3. Tap the Highlight button.

A colored highlight is placed on the word.


Figure 7-16: Use these tools to perform a variety of actions.

4. To change the color of the highlight on a word, remove the highlight, or add a note, tap the highlighted word and then tap Highlight.

The toolbar shown in Figure 7-17 appears. Note that a shortcut for removing a bookmark is to simply tap the Bookmark button in the top-right corner of the page.

5. Tap one of these items:

· Colors: Tap the color button and then tap any colored circle to change the highlight color.

· Remove Highlight: Tapping the white circle with a red line through it removes the highlight.

· Note: Tap the Note icon to add a note to the item.

· Share: Tap this button to choose from sharing the highlighted text via Messages, Mail, Twitter, or Facebook.

· More Toolbar Options: You can tap the button at the right end of the toolbar to access Copy, Define, and Search tools.


Figure 7-17: Choose the highlight color from this menu.

6. Tap outside the highlighted word to close the menu.

7. 9781118944417-ma022.tif To go to a list of bookmarks and notes, tap the Table of Contents button on a book page.

8. In the Table of Contents, tap the Bookmarks or Notes tab.

As shown in Figure 7-18, all contents, bookmarks, or notes (including highlights) display on their respective tabs.


Figure 7-18: Tap the highlight or bookmark you want to display in this list.

9. Tap a bookmark or note in one of these lists to go to that location in the book.

tip.eps iPad automatically bookmarks the page where you left off reading in a book, so you don’t have to do it manually. A feature called Continuity allows you to pick up where you left off on one iOS device, such as the iPad, on another, such as your iPhone.

Checking Words in the Dictionary

I know that some people just skip over words they don’t understand when reading, but being a writer, I like to know what every word means. If you do, too, you’ll appreciate the iPad's built-in dictionary. As you read a book, if you come across unfamiliar words, don't skip over them — take the opportunity to learn a word! The built-in dictionary in iBooks even recognizes many proper names, such as historical figures and geographic locations.

Follow these steps to look up a word in the dictionary:

1. With a book open, press your finger on a word and hold it until the menu shown in Figure 7-19 appears.


Figure 7-19: Check a selected word in the built-in dictionary.

2. Tap the Define button.

A definition popover appears, as shown in Figure 7-20.


Figure 7-20: Quickly find definitions for words by using the dictionary.

3. Tap the definition and scroll down, if necessary, to view more.

4. When you finish reviewing the definition, tap anywhere on the page.

The definition disappears.

tip.eps You can also tap the Search Web button to look for information about a word from web sources, and tap the Manage button to choose which dictionary your definitions come from.

Organizing Your Library

iBooks lets you create collections of books to help you organize them by your own logic, such as Tearjerkers, Work-Related, and Great Recipes. You can place a book in only one collection, however. To create a collection from the Library bookshelf:

1. Tap Select.

2. Now tap one or more books and then tap Move.

3. In the Collections popover shown in Figure 7-21, tap New Collection at the bottom (you may need to scroll down to see it).

4. On the blank line that appears, type a name.

5. Tap Done.

The popover closes and you return to your Library.


Figure 7-21: You can create new groups of books in the Collections popover.

To add a book to an existing collection in the Library:

1. Tap Select.

2. Tap Select All, or tap one or more books and then tap the Move button that is located in the top left of the screen (see Figure 7-22).


Figure 7-22: Move books into a collection.

3. In the popover that appears, tap the collection to which youd like to move the book.

The book now appears on the bookshelf in that collection.

tip.eps To change which collection you’re viewing, tap the button with the current collection’s name to display other collections and then tap the one you want.

Deleting Books in Collections

After you download lots of books (I know one person who has 1,000), you may become organizationally challenged. iBooks lets you delete books you no longer need on your iPad to keep your bookshelf manageable. Remember that those books aren’t gone; you can find and download them again anytime by using the Purchased tab at the bottom of the Store.

Here are the steps for deleting books from your iPad:

1. When you finish a book, tap the List view button in the top-left corner of the Library.

2. Swipe to the left on a title in the list.

3. Tap Delete.

The book is deleted from iPad.

To delete a collection and move the books within it back into the Books library, follow these steps:

1. With the Collections dialog displayed, tap Select and then Select All.

2. Tap Move.

3. Swipe to the left on any collection.

Delete buttons appear (see Figure 7-23).

4. Tap Delete.

A message appears, asking you to tap Remove to remove the contents of the collection from your iPad; however, the titles aren’t deleted, they’re just removed from the collection. All titles within that deleted collection return to their original collections in your Library; the default one is Books.


Figure 7-23: With a quick swipe, you can access this Delete button.

Browsing the Newsstand

Newsstand is an app that focuses on subscribing to and reading magazines, newspapers, and other periodicals rather than books. Newsstand offers an interface to display the periodicals you subscribe to much like a brick-and-mortar newsstand.

Downloading periodical apps to Newsstand

When you download a free publication, you’re actually downloading an app to Newsstand. You can then tap that app to buy individual issues or subscribe, as covered in the next section. To download periodical apps to Newsstand, follow these steps:

1. Tap Newsstand on the Home screen to open Newsstand (see Figure 7-24).

2. Tap the Store button.

The Newsstand store opens, offering Featured periodicals, Top Charts, and Explore. Tap the Categories button to view categories of periodicals for your shopping pleasure. (See Figure 7-25.)

3. Tap any of the items displayed, scroll in a category to move to other choices, or tap in the Search field at the top right and enter a search term to locate a publication youre interested in.

tip.eps If you tap other buttons at the bottom of the screen, such as Top Charts or Purchased, you’re taken to other types of content than periodicals. Also, if you tap Featured again after tapping one of these buttons, you’re taken to other kinds of apps than periodicals. Your best bet: Stay on the Store screen that displays when you tap the Store button in Newsstand.


Figure 7-24: View all your subscriptions and publication issues in one place.


Figure 7-25: Browse for periodicals to your heart’s content.

4. When you find an item, tap it to view a detailed description (see Figure 7-26).

5. Tap the Free button and then tap Install.

The app downloads to Newsstand.


Figure 7-26: Get the lowdown on a particular publication by viewing details.

Buying issues

To purchase issues of periodicals within Newsstand there are variables based on the publication you’re subscribing to, but here are the steps using a sample publication:

1. Tap a periodical app in Newsstand.

In the example shown here, tap Latest Issue or Issues (see Figure 7-27).

2. Tap the Price button and, in the confirmation that appears, tap Buy.

3. You may be asked to enter your Apple ID again and to tap Yes in one more confirmation to authorize the purchase.

The issue is charged to your iTunes & App Store account.


Figure 7-27: Tap Latest Issue or Issues.