Using a keyboard with your iPad? Here are the shortcuts you need to know!

Using an external keyboard with your iPad? Here are the shortcuts you need to know!

While Apple did a great job with the virtual software keyboard for the iPad, for some people nothing replaces the productivity of pounding on a real, physical, hardware keyboard. Luckily, you can connect a variety of Bluetooth keyboards to achieve just that, and when you do, some traditional shortcuts immediately become available to you in Safari, Mail, and Pages. Federico Viticci has compiled a list of them. MacStories:

Right now, new keyboard shortcuts have only been added to Safari, Mail, and Pages in a very limited fashion. While they are consistent with their OS X counterparts, Apple has only brought a few of the Mac’s shortcuts to its iOS 7 apps, leaving other apps like Messages or Reminders without shortcut support. It’s likely that, with time, Apple will bring more shortcuts to Safari, Mail, and other stock apps. I couldn’t find official documentation on Apple’s website and I’ve tested every possible shortcut with a simple trial and error procedure on my iPad.

If you're used to using them on the Mac, you should be right at home in Safari, Mail, and Pages. Check out the list, try out the commands, let me know how they work for you, and if you find any more, shout!

Source: MacStories

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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There are 36 comments. Add yours.

Justin Thiel says:

I think that it's a great tool for doing real work on. I don't think that a tablet keyboard is the best for this approach however, not unless you are traveling with no easy way to bring a larger keyboard option. A case that has a kickstand on it with a detachable keyboard and a mouse, that's a nice setup for doing work on an iPad. Once I can afford one, I plan to do just that.

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sir17reeder says:

I would defiantly get a Bluetooth keyboard like this if I had an iPad.

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WhatDidYouSayWillis says:

Dude? You should change your avatar!!

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marchie_78 says:

I don't think the weight of the keyboard is worth the trade off. I actually find the screen keyboard + autocorrect to be pretty good. I know not everyone will agree with me but I think Steve Jobs would have.

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AdrianGabeChen says:

I never understood why people would get a keyboard for their tablets. If I wanted to use a keyboard I would just power up my Mac.

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WhatDidYouSayWillis says:


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pinpoint007 says:

Because, I use my iPad at work and I need a keyboard to type notes quickly. (and where I don't have a mac) But, I leave the keyboard at the office and only carry my iPad back home, where I don't use a keyboard (or I just use my MBP).

joshrocker says:

On occasion you need to type out something a little bit longer than normal. If I'm already on my iPad it's usually easier just to use that instead of powering up my laptop. I don't use the keyboard often but it's nice to have on the a few occasions where a long email or report is needed.

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jproubique says:

I just ordered a keyboard case for my iPad air I'm excited to learn said shortcuts.

G.4 says:

Don't know where I would be without keyboard shortcuts. I use them constantly even at work on my windows PC.

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metllicamilitia says:

I'll definitely have to check them out if/when I get a keyboard for my Mini. The problem is I want a full size keyboard, or at least larger than 3/4 of the Mini itself.

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kataran says:

It's a great solution for making your iPad more productive

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Geohistoria says:

When I need a keyboard for my iOS devices I'm fortunate enough to have the remarkable Apple Bluetooth model. After slipping on a set of "legs" from Wingstand ( I'm ready to go.

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smileyboy says:

Nice find! Forgot about those wings.

Adrian Liu says:

What is the reasoning behind not adding support for iPhone and iPod touch? Or is there already support?

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goodevening says:

I like using my keyboard for typing long notes with my iPad bit I don't use any shortcuts though. I like the way it feels instead of using the virtual one.

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vianar says:

I have tried keyboards that have not been part if a case and found the speed of typing was much faster but that was overshadowed by the inconvenience of carrying it around. However, I have not tried one that is part of a case mainly because of cost but I think now I should give it a try. Thanks.

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jimmyah says:

The Logitech keyboard has heaps of shortcuts such as copy, paste, text highlight, play, pause, mute, volume up, down, spotlight, keyboard select and show/hide keyboard.

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moxon64 says:

The physical keyboard makes most typing function a lot easier. Especially for those with bigger hands.

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GlennRuss says:

I am kind of the same, pull out the MacBook Pro, but if I am not near power, the iPad 10 hr is nice with a portable keyboard, and I can easily transfer work to the MacBook to finish later.

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eric6052 says:

I have the Apple Bluetooth keyboard not a keyboard case so I find myself using the on screen keyboard most of the time because of the convenience factor. When I'm planning on writing a long email or a letter I always get the keyboard out and use it. The ability to have shortcuts available is a great option to have.

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De-Wet Nagel says:

Absolutely perfect for writing on the go!

Plus it sorta feels like it turns my iPad into a touch-screen landscape and portrait interchangeable writers laptop!!!

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zdn1042 says:

I remember before the official announcement of iPad Air, there were several rumors that Apple would be releasing a keyboard of their own. I wonder if this might be the reason for it.

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Dionte says:

Something like the surface touch cover would be nice.

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rafaelmelo2000 says:

I was going to buy a cover for my iPad, did not buy the keyboard. When I need to make a job that needs a lot of typing, I use my laptop.
I use the iPad mainly in a mobile way, using a keyboard adds bulk and weight.

Keyboard, naigh!

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JTEPSU02 says:

I have always thought it to be ridiculous to use a "hardware" keyboard on a device that has an on screen keyboard. Then I started a masters program that is writing intensive. The first thing I bought was a new iPad, the second, a Zaggkeyboard for iPad. I love it! I, now, cannot imagine what it would be like to type all these papers using the onscreen keyboard. I will check out this list when i have a little more time to play!

DaMacGuy says:

This is great, but is there a workaround for keyboards without a Command key? I have a Perixx folding keyboard that lacks it. What key combination would mimic a Command key?

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nijoma81 says:

I've been trying I use my iPad as my made tool when writing because it simply so easy to take to coffee shops etc however I only tried once to use the screen keys board while typing. You never know how much tab is missed until you do t have it.
For small emails it was find however I found I really needed the physical keyboard for long projects. I was really hoping that Apple would could out with a "surface" type keyboard/cover of their own this year but sadly no.
I'm using the Apple Bluetooth keyboard which is ok but not fully integrated like it could be to the iPad.

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BeyondtheTech says:

I'm still waiting until someone produces a Surface-like keyboard cover for my iPad mini.

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Garrytodd says:

I sometimes use an Apple keyboard with my iPad. It works better when typing a document. Sometimes I prefer it for browsing on Safari too. These shortcuts will help a lot.

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Edward Conde says:

I have just purchased the Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover for the Air. Look nice and the keys are perfect spacing for my taste. One big thing tho is the top portion of the keyboard seems to lift when the iPad is locked in. Unlike previous models, this model lacks the plastic molding that seems to have provided extra support to the ipad & keyboard. I can see a gap from the top of the keyboard to the base of the keyboard. I have posted some images of what I am talking about on my blog:

I have also contact Logitech support, they state it is a defective keyboard and I should return it. I got the keyboard from Best Buy, so I went to Staples to see if they carried the keyboard. Staples had one on display but it was exactly the same as the model I have. So this indicates a possible design flaw. If anyone else has this keyboard can you confirm if this is happening to you?

RobertsDP says:

I have a Zagg keyboard and love it, especially with iOS 6 but when iOS 7 came thru the shortcuts on the keyboard stopped working. Kinda sucks but still good.

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Ryan Ellerbe says:

I just got the new Logitech ultra thin keyboard folio for my mini and it's awesome. I had the original Logitech keyboard folio and the new one is so much better. I use my iPad mini and my keyboard for work on the go in my truck. I would never to back to not having a keyboard.

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