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Five super useful iPad Safari tricks

We uncovered five very useful, built-in tools you can enable right now in Safari for iPad. Surf faster, be more efficient, and become a browsing master with these easy tips.

Web browsing on your iPad is nowhere near as robust as desktop surfing, but anyone who picks up an iPad to surf the Net can admit that it's a pretty awesome experience.

To make your browsing experience even better, we uncovered five very useful tools built-into Safari that you can start using right now. These tips and tricks will help you browse faster, be more efficient, and make the most of iPad's Safari.

Follow the steps and the photos to master these tricks now.

1. Enable the bookmarks bar

Access your favorite sites faster with a desktoplike bookmarks bar that stays on top of any page in Safari.

To enable it, go to Settings > Safari > Always Show Bookmarks Bar.

Now head to a Web site in Safari and tap the arrow at the top to add a bookmark. Edit the bookmark title (the shorter the better), and make sure it's sorted under "Bookmarks Bar." Hit "Save" and repeat for any other sites you want to add.

2. Use bookmarklets

On your desktop browser, it's easy to add bookmarklets, which are like extensions or add-ons. For example, Instapaper's bookmarklet lets you add an article to your "to read" list, and Readability gives you a text-only, ad-free view of any page.

Bookmarklets work on iPads (and iPhones or iPod Touches), too:

  • First, bookmark any Web site.

  • Find the bookmarklet you want to add and copy the link (JavaScript) to the clipboard.

  • Head to the bookmark you added in the first step. Edit the name to match your new bookmarklet (i.e. "Instapaper"), and paste the JavaScript in the address field, replacing the old URL.

For a great list of bookmarklets, go here and here.

3. Save time with AutoFill

If you're filling in your personal information each time you encounter a Web form, you're wasting time. Instead, use Safari's built-in AutoFill feature to let your iPad do the work for you.

Head to the Contacts app, and add a new contact with your name and personal information. Fill out as much information as you feel comfortable with and save. Now go to Settings > Safari > AutoFill. Turn "Use Contact info" on, and select your name in the option below. If you'd like, you can also enable Safari to remember names and passwords.

4. Scroll within boxes

Many Web sites use embedded scroll boxes, or pop-up windows with scroll bars (especially throughout Facebook). One-finger scrolling doesn't work in those windows. The solution? Two-finger scrolling.

5. Add links to your home screen

Safari lets you add any link to your home page and launch it as you would an app. This saves a lot of time when launching your favorite Web sites and Web apps.

To add a link, launch Safari and go to the page you want to bookmark. With two fingers, zoom into the area of the page you want to appear as the "app" icon. Then tap the arrow at the top, select "Add to Home Screen," edit the name, and hit "Save."

Some Web sites already have designated bookmark icons, which will show up instead of the zoomed area you chose.