Use the iPod Touch

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Congratulations on purchasing your Apple iPod touch! The iPod touch is currently Apple's latest iPod model. It can access the Internet through a wireless network and has a touch screen. This article will teach you how to use your brand new iPod touch!


  1. Unpack your hardware. The iPod touch comes packaged with a USB cable, earphones, a small instruction booklet, and Apple logo stickers.
  2. Prepare the USB cable for use in a later step. The larger part of the USB cable (30-pin connector) plugs into the bottom of the iPod (the side with the gray icon facing forward) and the thinner end goes into a USB port on your computer. You will use the USB cable to sync your iPod with iTunes, or to charge its battery. In the case of the new 5th generation iPod Touch you will use a lightning to USB connector for syncing and charging instead of a 30-pin. Just plug the reversible lightning connector into your iPod anyway you like and the other USB end into a USB port on your computer.
  3. Prepare the earphones for your device. The earphones plug into the jack at the top. (For new 5th generation iPod Touch users the jack is at the bottom of the device) You'll notice a small white bar on the cord connecting to the right earbud, with a grey plus sign at the top and a minus sign at the bottom. You can use these buttons to control the volume of the earphones. Additionally, there's a small, metal mesh circle on the other side of the bar; this is a microphone.(Older models never had a microphone at the bottom, but as of the 4th generation, one has become available too.)
  4. Get familiar with the buttons. There are only three buttons on an iPod Touch. They're easy to use once you know what they do, and can perform a variety of functions.
    • The sleep/wake button at the top. When you first open the iPod, hold this button down to turn it on. Do the same thing later to turn it off. Tap it once to lock the screen and or put the iPod into sleep mode. (Note: the iPod will still use battery power in sleep mode.)
    • The volume buttons on the left side can be used to turn the sound up or down.
    • The home button, located on the bottom of the screen with the grey box in a circle. The home button has two functions. Tapping it once will bring up the main screen. Two quick taps will bring up a task bar at the bottom of the screen. Tap an app once to switch to that app from the one you are currently in. Hold down your finger on an app until they all begin to wiggle and have red minus icons in their top left corners. Tap the minus icons to close the apps. Doing this periodically will help preserve battery power.
  5. Follow the onscreen set-up guide to fully activate your new iPod Touch.
    • Select a language. English is already preset, but Spanish, French, Russian, Chinese, Japanese and other languages are available from the drop-down menu.
    • Choose your country or region. Your country (e.g., United States) should be already preset, but other countries are available to select.
    • Enable Location Services. This will allow the iPod to use your current location for apps requiring that information, as well as for geotagging photos and videos. Choosing to enable or disable the functionality is your choice.
    • Connect to a Wi-Fi network. You may need to enter a password.
    • Choose how to set up the iPod. You can set it up as a brand new device, or sync your apps, music, photos, and other information from a previous iTunes or iCloud backup.
      • If you select "Restore from iCloud Backup" or "Restore from iTunes Backup", your iPod should begin to sync the information. This article assumes you are setting up the device as new.
    • Sign in with your Apple ID. If you don't have one, select "Create a Free Apple ID".
    • Determine if you want to use iCloud. Launched in October 2011, iCloud allows users to wirelessly sync any downloaded apps, books, photos or videos to all their Apple devices. It's a free service, but purchasing more storage space "in the cloud" requires a fee. Again, choosing to use the service or not is up to you. If you'd like to use it, select "Use iCloud".
    • Choose between backing up the iPod to iCloud or to your computer. Backing up to iCloud is wireless but uses your free "cloud" storage allotment; backing up to your computer requires connecting the device to a Mac or PC via USB cable (but is free).
    • Decide if you want to use Find My iPod. If your iPod is stolen or you happen to lose it somewhere, the Find My iPod feature can help locate it, remotely set a passcode, wipe all of its data, and more. Using the service is optional as well.
    • Select between sending diagnostic data to Apple automatically, or not at all. If your iPod crashes, it will send a report of the crash to Apple for analysis. If you'd rather not have your device do this, tap "Don't Send".
    • Tap "Register with Apple" to officially activate the device.
    • Select "Start Using iPod". You're good to go!
  6. Learn how to manage the touch screen. "Buttons" on the screen can be activated by a short tap with one finger.
    • To move up or down a list, swipe your finger up or down the screen in one movement.
    • To zoom in on a web page or photo, put two fingers in the middle and move them apart diagonally, keeping your fingertips on the screen.
    • To zoom out, place two fingers two inches apart and "pinch" them together, keeping your fingertips on the screen.

Syncing with iTunes

  1. Read and follow the direction in the Sync Your iPhone to iTunes article, as the iPod touch uses the same operating system as an iPhone.
  2. Using the USB cable, connect the iPod to your computer. If you already have iTunes, it should open automatically. If not, you can download iTunes for free.
    • When iTunes opens, it will prompt you to register your iPod. You can do this now or put it off until later. It will also ask you to name your device, e.g. "Steve's iPod."
  3. Sync your content with iTunes with your (also included) cord. "Syncing" is simply the act of matching the content in iTunes to your iPod, whether it's one song or your whole library. There are a few different ways to add items to your iPod.
    • You can choose to add everything you have in iTunes to your iPod by checking the box next to "Automatically sync songs to my iPod" after you first connect your iPod to iTunes. You have the same option for apps and photos. If you want to add some items from your library but not others, leave this box unchecked and click "Done."
    • To add individual items, find them in your iTunes library, then hold and drag your selection to your iPod icon on the left bar. #*Alternatively, you can click on your iPod icon, then click the "Music" (or whatever it is you want) button near the top of the screen. From here, you can select certain artists, genres, playlists or albums to add by checking the box next to the category you want. (For instance, if you want every Rolling Stones song in your library added to your iPod, locate the Rolling Stones under Artists, then just check the box next to it.) When you've chosen everything you want, click Sync in the lower right corner.
  4. Understand the process to deleting a song from your device. To delete songs, you can stay in the above and uncheck what you no longer want, then click Sync. Or, you can click "Music" under the iPod menu on the left-hand side, highlight the songs you don't want, and just press the delete button on your keyboard.
  5. Understand how you can add apps to your iPod, or how to Remove an app from the same iPod touch. If you have already purchased apps on iTunes, click the "Apps" button near the top of the screen when you have your iPod menu open. Here, you can add apps to the iPod or remove them. This is also where you can sync up your email, Facebook, Twitter and other accounts via those apps.

Playing Music

  1. Tap the Music icon on your iPod. You'll see icons along the bottom for Playlists, Artists, Songs, Albums and More. These are just different ways of sorting the music on your iPod.
    • The More tab is where you can find podcasts, audiobooks, and iTunesU lectures. You can also search by Composer or Genre through the More tab.
  2. Open the Songs tab and tap a song to play it. This will move you to the Now Playing screen.
    • At the top of the screen, you'll see the artist, song title, and album title. Beneath that is a progress bar showing where you are in the song. You can drag the circle in the progress bar to skip ahead or behind in the song.
    • Beneath the progress bar are two arrow icons. Tapping the circular arrow icon on the left will put the song on repeat; tapping the crossed arrows will shuffle all the songs on your iPod and play them after the one you selected.
    • At the bottom are the skip buttons on the right and left, and the pause/play button in the middle. Beneath that is the volume bar. You can drag this to the right or left with your finger to increase or decrease the volume.
    • If the song came bundled with album art, this will be displayed in the background.
    • Tap the bulleted list icon in the upper right corner to rate the song. Once you've done this for several songs, you can then sort them by rating.
    • Tapping the arrow in the upper left corner will take you back to the different lists of your music. To get back to the Now Playing screen, tap the Now Playing button in the upper right corner.
  3. Jump to different parts of your lists using the alphabet bar running down the right side of the screen. Say you want a song that starts with T; tap the T part of the bar to jump to that section of the list.
    • Open up the search feature by tapping the small magnifying glass at the top of the alphabet bar. Tapping inside the Search box will open a QWERTY keyboard at the bottom of the screen.
  4. Make a playlist on-the-go. An on-the-go playlist is one you put together on your iPod, instead of doing it on iTunes. Tap the Playlist tab at the bottom of the lists screen.
    • Tap Add Playlist. This will prompt you to name your new playlist. Tap Save to move on.
    • A list showing all your songs will open up. To add a song to the playlist, tap the blue plus sign to the right of the song. This will grey out the option, because it is already on your playlist. When you've added all the songs you want, tap the Done button in the upper right corner.
    • You'll return to the Playlists tab, where you should see your new playlist title. Tap on it to open. At the top, you'll see buttons to Edit, Clear, or Delete the playlist.
  5. Push the home button at the bottom of the iPod to return to the main screen and open other apps. You don't have to have your lists or the Now Playing screens open to listen to music. The music will keep playing.
  6. Know how to control your music, when the iPod screen is locked. Don't unlock the screen by swiping the button on the bottom from left to right; simply tap the home button twice. This should cause the skip buttons, the pause/play button, a volume bar, and the song info to pop up on the top of the screen.
  7. Know other ways you can listen to your music, if you don't have earphones ready for use on your device. You don't have to use earphones to listen to your music. If you unplug the headphones, the music will play from little speakers on the device directly(on the back of the device).

Browsing the Web

  1. Read and follow the directions located in Use Safari on an iPhone, since the same operating system is provided there, as is provided on an iPod touch.
  2. Open the Safari app, located in the dock at the bottom of the screen. Safari is Apple's default web browser, similar to Internet Explorer, Firefox and Google Chrome. A menu with available WiFi networks will pop up, if you haven't already enabled one through the Settings button.
  3. Select the appropriate WiFi network you'd like to use.
  4. Use the Google bar at the top right to search for items; use the longer browser bar at the top left to type in a Web address you already know. Once you tap in these boxes, a QWERTY keyboard will pop up from the bottom of the screen, allowing you to enter letters.
  5. Understand the uses of the buttons at the bottom of the Safari screen. There are five buttons at the bottom of the screen. You'll use these to navigate around the browser, as you would on a regular computer.
    • The arrows are to move backward or forward to pages you've already visited. The left-pointing arrow is back; the right-pointing arrow is forward.
    • The arrow coming out of the square opens an options menu. From here, you can add bookmarks, mail links, tweet, or print.
    • The open book provides access to your bookmarks. Bookmark your favorite pages using the options menu.
    • The layered squares on the far right allow you to open multiple windows. If you want to look up another site without losing the page you already have open, tap this button and hit New Page in the lower left corner. You can scroll between pages by swiping your finger left or right. Close unwanted pages by tapping the red X in the upper left corner. Tap Done when you are finished.

Other Apps

  1. Know what an app is. An app is an application or a program that runs on your iPod, similar to a running program on your computer. The iPod Touch will arrive with some apps already loaded on it. These include Music + iTunes, Safari, Mail, GameCenter, Photos, iMessage, and more. There will be four apps "docked" at the bottom of the screen; these are usually the most-used apps, such as Music or Safari.
    • You can purchase media directly from your iPod using the iTunes app. You can purchase apps from the App Store. Several popular apps are available for free.
  2. Know the status of an app, and whether or not it needs WiFi to be used or not. Some apps will require access to the Internet via WiFi. To manually select a Wi-Fi network or hotspot, click the Settings icon, then select WiFi to see a list. This only works where there is a trusted wireless network; the iPod won't connect to untrusted networks. Settings is also where you can adjust screen brightness, wallpaper, security, and app settings.
  3. Know how to text/send a message to your other iPod touch/iPhone/iPad/iDevice friends/contacts with iMessage. iMessage allows you to send free instant messages other iPods, iPads or iPhones using a Wi-Fi connection.
  4. Know how to take pictures from a new iPod touch. To take photos or videos with your iPod, open the Camera app. To view your photos, tap the Photos icon.



  • Taking advantage of the free engraving (if you purchase your iPod online) is a handy way to put your name on your iPod and personalize it. However, understand that engraving your iPod with your name or a personal message will considerably reduce its resale value should you decide to sell it.
  • Try restarting the device if you're frozen in an app.
  • Think about purchasing Apple Care for your iPod. It comes with a one-year limited warranty, but Apple Care extends your coverage to two years and provides global repair coverage. Remember, the limited warranty doesn't cover accidental damage, but Apple Care does.
  • The iPod Touch has a lot of features. If you're unsure whether it's right for you, visit an Apple Store and try out one of their demo units. Ask an Apple Store employee to explain the features to you if you'd like.
  • You may have problems downloading apps if you run out of free space. Try deleting unused large apps, photos, movies, or music. If you really want to err on the safe side, purchase a 64-gigabyte iPod Touch (the largest available storage capacity).
  • Consider buying a case for your iPod because the screen cracks easily. They are relatively inexpensive, and helpful in keeping the back of the iPod clean and scratch-free. You can also purchase plastic screen protectors to keep the display free of smudges and fingerprints.
  • If your battery is running low, try closing out unnecessary apps via the Multitasking tab and lowering the screen brightness in Settings.
  • Clean your iPod using a lint-free microfiber cloth.


  • The iPod Touch seems durable, but it can be broken. Be careful and avoid dropping it.
  • The shiny chrome backing of the iPod Touch is extremely prone to scratches. Consider putting the device in a case as soon as you set it up.
  • Exercise caution when Buy a Used iPod Touch.
  • Jailbreaking will void your warranty.
  • Be Safe When Using WiFi hotspots; they aren't always secure.

Things You'll Need

  • iPod Touch (with headphones and 30-pin/lightning to USB cable for charging)
  • Mac or PC with latest version of iTunes

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