How to Open the iPad's Settings

Illustration of hands holding two iPads, one that is asking Siri to launch settings, the other typing in Settings into the search bar

Kyle Fewel @Lifewire 

The Settings app on the iPad houses all of the menus you use to change how your tablet works. It also lets you manage your Apple ID and App Store subscriptions, block particular content types, and monitor and control how you and your family use the device.

You access Settings the same way you open any other game or app on your iPad. You'll find it on the Home screen. But if you have multiple pages of content on your tablet, you have other options.

How to Open the iPad Settings App

The fastest way to open Settings on your iPad is to hold down the Home Button to activate Siri, and once the voice assistant activates, say, "Launch Settings." Opening apps by name is just one of many productive features Siri offers

Another quick way to open Settings or other apps is with iOS' universal search feature called Spotlight Search. Place your finger down on the Home Screen, and then swipe down. The search screen will appear, and you can type "settings" into the input box. Tap the icon in the results like you would on the Home Screen.

Settings app on iPad

Once you've opened Settings, you can move the icon to the dock at the bottom of the iPad's screen. Doing so provides constant access to it in the future.

What Can You Do in the iPad's Settings?

The Settings app has several options you can use to change how your iPad behaves. Some are practical for everyone, like turning off cellular service to save battery life, and some are important for those who need extra help using the iPad, like the Accessibility settings.

Here are a few things you can do with the iPad settings:

  • Add a new Mail account. You can add new mail accounts under the Mail, Contacts, Calendars settings. You can also configure whether or not you receive notifications when you receive new messages and how often the iPad checks the inbox.
  • Turn off notifications for a specific app. Notifications are handy to receive news and updates in real time. But you may not want them for all of your apps. Rather than turning off push notifications for the entire iPad, you can go to the Notifications settings and turn them on or off for a single app.
  • Adjust the iPad's brightness. This setting can save battery life. In the Brightness and Wallpaper settings, slide the brightness down to a point where the iPad is still easy to see but not quite as bright. The lower this setting, the longer your battery will end up lasting.
  • Set a default web browser. You don't have to use Google as your default search engine. Under the Safari settings, you can configure the default search engine to be Google, Yahoo, or Bing.
  • Turn on automatic downloads. A neat feature of Apple's move towards the cloud is the ability for the iPad to automatically download music, books, and apps made on other devices, including purchases made on your PC.
  • Customize your iPad's Look. You can use any image you want for the background on the lock screen and the home screen by setting a custom wallpaper.
  • Configure Touch ID. If you have a newer iPad with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor, and you didn't configure it during the initial setup, you can do so in Settings. Touch ID isn't just for Apple Pay. It has many other uses such as quickly unlocking your iPad without typing in a passcode.
  • Configure FaceTime. Want to change how people reach you using FaceTime on your iPad? You can turn FaceTime on or off or add another email address to the list.
  • Turn off Wi-Fi. iOS's ability to ask you whether or not you want to join a nearby Wi-Fi network can be handy, but if you're traveling in a car and passing by different networks, it can also be annoying. In the Wi-Fi settings, you can tell the iPad not to ask you to join nearby networks.