iEcosystem iPad

Change the font size on iPad: Make text larger/smaller with accessibility zoom

Unlike a regular Mac computer or Windows PC, you cannot change the screen resolution of your iPad; but Apple included an accessibility feature that allows you to make the text larger or smaller and change the font size by using a zoom. This option is not enabled by default, but this tutorial explains how to turn it on; this particular setting can be enabled or disabled at will, so it will not get in your way unless you explicitly try zooming in or out. Once you get familiar with this preference, you will probably leave it on: briefly, it offers the same convenience as using the pinch in or pinch out finger gesture to zoom in or out of pictures and web pages - but magnifies every element visible on the screen, and also lets you pan and move the screen around.

How to make the iPad default font default much larger

Follow these steps to turn on and enable the zoom magnifier on your iPad:

  • Access and customize iPad settings and preferences Start by selecting the "Settings" icon on one of your Home screen; if you cannot see it, press the Home button (round at the bottom) once or twice until you see a text field: type "settings" inside it, and tap Return to search and locate the Settings icon.
  • Your iPad will automatically load the "General" preferences, which are the ones you want; if they are not selected, tap on the "General" tab on the left hand side.
  • Now scroll down to the very bottom: right above the "Reset" button and "Battery Percentage", tap on the "Accessibility" button to open this set of options and settings.
  • The second accessibility setting on your iPad reads "Zoom", and is set to "Off" by default. Tap on it.
  • The next screen lets you enable and turn on the zoom feature, and displays a list of explanation. First, tap on the On-Off switch once to make it mark the zoom magnifier feature as "On".
  • You are all set, and you can now see everything larger on your iPad screen (larger text rather than font size itself) by zooming in, and make everything smaller on the display by zooming out.

Let's now explain in details the finger gestures to control the iPad zoom.

Zoom magnifying commands on your iPad

To zoom in, or to zoom out - Simply double-tab anywhere on the screen: as long as you have enabled the Zoom in your settings, this command will turn the zoom on or off, making text larger, as well as any other items visible on the display.

To move the screen while zooming is enabled - You need to use three fingers of your choice and pan around the glass display to move the current screen focus around and see other parts of the image you normally see in whole (1:1 scale, no zoom).

To increase or decrease the iPad default zoom level - Here too, use three fingers to double-tap in a special way. Tap once with three fingers, and tap another time quickly (still with three fingers), but keep your fingers on the screen. Then, while still keeping your fingers in constant contact with the glass display, move up to increase the zoom (and zoom in further still), or move down to zoom out. Then, release your fingers and your iPad will keep the custom zoom level you chose (which is previewed in real time).

Perhaps to avoid puzzling surprises, Apple disabled this option by default; once you have become accustomed to it, you'll be able to magnify the screen at will, and probably never by accident since three-finger zoom commands are too unnatural to occur accidentally.


iPad Tutorial

Unless noted otherwise, these free iPad tutorials apply to Wi-Fi model and iPad Wi-Fi + 3G models, and updated to cover iOS 4.

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