iOS 5: How to set up geotagged Reminders

The Reminders app in iOS 5 will let you set reminders based on location, as well as time. Here's our video guide on how to set up location-based alerts.


The Reminders app is one of many new tools added in iOS 5. Like a normal task manager, it lets you enter a list of duties and set dates for each one, but it also lets you set reminders based on location, rather than time. Watch our video above for a full step by step guide on how to use it.

The concept of contexts

Some jobs can't be done in a certain location. You can't buy bread at home, or renew your season ticket anywhere but at the train station, so a time-based reminder to do either when you're in the wrong place is close to useless. Context-based reminders use the iPhone's integrated GPS tools to pop up alerts when you're in the relevant location for completing a task.

Setting a reminder

Here we've set three reminders by tapping '+' and entering a title for each one.

Setting reminders; time-based reminders

Two of these -- booking the dentist and renewing the car insurance -- can be given time-based reminders, so we'll tap each one, select 'on a day' and then use the standard iOS tumblers to set a deadline.

Returning to the list of reminders, we can now tap 'date' to switch from the list view, and see all of our reminders for a particular day listed in order.

Ordered reminders; setting a location

But the reminder to buy milk should be triggered not at a certain time but when we arrive at a particular location. Set locations must already exist in the Contacts app. Our local supermarket isn't in there yet, so we'll use the Maps app to search for it and then tap the blue arrow at the end of its pushpin pop-up.

This calls up the shop's public contact details, which we want to add to the address book by tapping 'add to Contacts'.

Contact details; adding location

Returning to Reminders, we now tap the milk entry, followed by 'at a location', followed by 'choose address'. Searching for 'Sainsburys' brings up the new record, and tapping it adds it to the reminder.

Tap 'remind me' to return to the settings page, and then select 'when I leave' or 'when I arrive'. In this case, we want the latter.

Remind Me; Reminders page

We now click 'done' to return to the Reminders overview, completing the process. Our reminder to buy milk won't appear on any of the daily task sheets, but, the next time we're passing the store, our iPhone will remind us to pop in.

Marking tasks as done

When you've completed a task, tap the square box to the left of its name. It will be removed from the Reminders list, but it won't be forgotten. Swiping the list right moves it out of the way to reveal a list of completed jobs and the days on which they were done.

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