Typing special characters on your iPhone really is nothing special

Q. When composing email and other documents I often need to use special characters like the ones you see when spelling words in Spanish. Is there an easy way to access these special characters when typing on an iPhone?

A. What you are asking about is what’s known as diacritical marks. These are the symbols placed above or below a letter in a word to indicate a particular pronunciation in a specific language. This includes things like the n with a tilde that produces the en-yah sound in Spanish or the umlaut in languages ​​like Finnish, Swedish and others.

When typing on an iPhone or an iPad, all you have to do to access these characters is press and hold the corresponding letter and you will see most of the more common diacritical marks pop up which you can then select to add to the word you are typing.

The iPhone has a number of cool shortcuts like this.

For example, if you ever need to type the degree symbol to tell someone how hot it is in Texas, you can press and hold the “zero” key to get the symbol.

Another useful iPhone shortcut is pressing the Wi-Fi shortcut to get a list of all available networks that you can connect to. This saves you the trouble of going into Settings to find it.

This also seems to work on Android phones. 

Q. I recently installed some updates on my Windows PC and now I can not seem to search my Outlook emails. All searches come up with no results, even though I know the messages are there somewhere. Is there a way to fix this?

A. Some of the recent Microsoft updates seem to be causing Outlook to have to rebuild the email indexing.

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