iPads offer a wide variety of functionality, much of which is unnecessary or inappropriate for shared use in a business setting. Green Bits has developed the following list of recommended iPad settings and best practices to ensure data security and ease of use for you and your staff.
If you're setting up an iPad for the first time, check out our Set up your iPad article.
The exact location of iPad settings may vary depending on your software version. The instructions below apply to iOS 11 and later.
Table of Contents
- Turn off Passcode and Touch ID
- Turn off Auto-Brightness
- Turn off Automatic Downloads and Software Updates
- Turn off Keyboard Clicks
- Turn off Siri
- Don't require password for iTunes & App Store
- Don't add a payment method
- Don't save passwords
- Turn off iCloud Keychain
- Turn on Ask to Join Networks
- If using a wired setup, turn off Wi-Fi
- Use cellular data only when needed
- Location services
- iCloud backups
Turn off Passcode and Touch ID
Because each Green Bits user has their own 4-digit PIN to access the Register app, and because your staff should be able to access each iPad quickly and easily, there's no need to require a Passcode or Touch ID to access your iPads.
If you've already enabled Passcode or Touch ID, you can disable both by going to Settings > Touch ID & Passcode, toggle off each of the Touch ID options, and also tap Turn Passcode Off. You'll be prompted to confirm, and then enter your Passcode one last time as an extra layer of security.
Turn off Auto-Brightness
By default, your iPad will automatically adjust its screen brightness based on ambient lighting. To ensure ease of use and clear visibility at all times, we recommend turning this setting off in Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations.
To manually change screen brightness, swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access the Control Panel, which includes a screen brightness slider bar, or go to Settings > Display & Brightness.
Turn off Automatic Downloads and Software Updates
Because you depend on your iPads to make sales, you should control when software updates happen instead of letting the iPad update its software automatically at an inconvenient, busy time of day.
To disable automatic downloads and updates, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store, then toggle off all Automatic Downloads, especially Updates. This will prevent the Green Bits Register app (as well as all other apps) from updating automatically.
It's still important to keep the Register app up to date! Green Bits will announce when app updates become available via email and messages in Back Office. See Update the Green Bits Register app for instructions on installing updates manually, either outside of business hours or during a slow period.
To disable automatic updates for the iPad's core software (iOS), in iOS version 12.0 and later, go to Settings > General > Software Update > Automatic Updates. This is especially important because unlike app updates which take only a few minutes, software updates can take an hour or more, during which time you won't be able to use your iPad at all. It's best to run these updates overnight or when the register is not in use.
Turn off Keyboard Clicks
Tired of annoying keyboard clicks, but don't want to mute your iPad altogether? Go to Settings > Sounds and toggle off Keyboard Clicks.
Turn off Siri
Siri is great for personal devices, but unnecessary and potentially annoying on an iPad that is only used for Green Bits. Go to Settings > Siri & Search and toggle off all Siri settings.
Don't require password for iTunes & App Store
By default, iTunes and the App Store will require your Apple ID password for certain actions including downloading and updating app like Green Bits.
Although there should always be at least one staff member in your store who knows or can access your Apple ID password, you may not want to share it with all staff.
To avoid a scenario where a staff member needs to update or reinstall Green Bits, but can't because they don't know the required Apple ID password, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store > Password Settings and toggle off Require Password under Free Downloads.
Don't add a payment method
Although Apple requires you to set up an Apple ID in order to download and update apps from the App Store, entering a payment method is not required.
Because the Green Bits Register app is free to download, there's no need to enter a payment method in your iPad settings, and doing so may unintentionally open the door to employees making App Store or iTunes purchases without your knowledge or approval.
If you've already added a payment method, you can remove it in Settings > Wallet & Apple Pay. Select your payment method, then scroll down to the bottom and select Remove Card.
Don't save passwords
If you have signed into Green Bits Back Office or other websites using the Safari browser on your iPad, be careful not to save any personal passwords or account information that you don't want your staff to have access to.
The iPad will ask if you'd like to save login information the first time you sign into a website. If you've accidentally saved login information that you don't want accessible to others, go to Settings > Accounts & Passwords > App & Website Passwords. Swipe left across the saved login to expose a Delete button on the right side.
Turn off iCloud Keychain
Your iPad also has a feature that allows you to store login information and also credit card information in iCloud using a feature called Keychain. To disable Keychain, go to Settings > Accounts & Passwords > iCloud > Keychain and toggle off.
Turn on Ask to Join Networks
If you have label and/or receipt printers connected to your registers over your Wi-Fi network, it's important to keep all iPads connected to the correct Wi-Fi network.
While it's rare for iPads to automatically change Wi-Fi networks without warning, it can happen if the iPad detects an unsecured network (a network that doesn't require a password) within range and with a strong signal. This could even be a customer's smartphone operating as a Wi-Fi hotspot.
To prevent this, go to Settings > Wi-Fi, scroll to the bottom and toggle on Ask to Join Networks. With this setting turned on, the iPad will never automatically change Wi-Fi networks, and will show a dialog box asking for confirmation before joining another Wi-Fi network.
If using a wired setup, turn off Wi-Fi
If you use a wired register setup (where the iPad connects to your printers and the Internet over an Ethernet adapter), prevent possible interference and hardware connection issues by disabling Wi-Fi. Go to Settings > Wi-Fi and toggle off Wi-Fi at the top of the menu, or swipe up from the bottom of the screen (iOS 11 and earlier) or swipe down from the top right (iOS 12 and later) to open the Control Center and tap the Wi-Fi symbol.
Use cellular data only when needed
Some iPads include cellular data capabilities in addition to Wi-Fi. While this can be an excellent backup in case your Wi-Fi goes down, under normal circumstances it may cause interference with network hardware like label and receipt printers.
If your iPad has the cellular option, turn it off when it's not needed in Settings > Cellular.
The Auto-Lock setting puts the iPad into sleep mode after a specified period of time to extend battery life. If your iPads stay in one place and are always plugged in to power, and thus battery life is less of a concern, you may find it convenient to disable Auto-Lock.
Go to Settings > Display & Brightness and set Auto-Lock to Never.
It's not necessary to enable Location Services, and doing so consumes more power. However, enabling Location Services and Find My iPhone may come in handy if your iPad is ever lost or stolen.
To disable or enable Location Services, go to Settings > Privacy.
Green Bits stores sensitive data securely in the cloud, not on the iPad. If the iPad is lost or stolen, or stops working, you won't lose any important data, even if you haven't backed up to iCloud.
If you only use the iPad for Green Bits, it's unlikely you'll ever need to back up to iCloud.
Backing up to iCloud can, however, make the process of upgrading to new iPads easier. If you have an older iPad and decide to replace it with a newer model, backing up the old iPad to iCloud first will allow you to download all of its data and settings to a brand new iPad and skip much of the setup process.
To enable or disable go to Settings > Apple ID (tap your name, or the name associated with your Apple ID, at the top of the Settings menu) > iCloud > iCloud Backup