Information Technology Update – July 16, 2015

July 15, 2015

Purchasing Apps and iBooks using an iTunes Gift Card

When purchasing iPad apps or an iBook through iTunes or the iBook’s Book Store for use on your son’s iPad at school, we recommend the purchase be made using an Apple ID that your son can manage. This then enables your son to update the app or reinstall the app if this is required while at school. Apple IDs are available to anyone 13 years or over. If your son is not yet 13 years old you could setup an Apple ID for your son and -‘co-manage’ the iTunes account with them until they turn 13.

It is also highly recommended that no credit cards be attached to any students iTunes account for security reasons. The purchase of any app or iBook is recommended to be done using an iTunes Gift Card which is pre-paid and reduces security issues. The iTunes Gift Card can be easily added to the iTunes account and can be purchased at a variety of outlets including Coles, Woolworths, Harvey Norman and JB HiFi. It is extremely worthwhile being on the lookout for sales on iTunes Gift Cards as you can sometimes get up to 30% off the value of the card. An excellent site to monitor the sale of these gift cards is

Backing up the iPad

It is very important that the boy’s iPads are being backed up. From time to time the IT Staff have to reset an iPad to its original factory settings in order to solve a problem or update an operating system. It is important that in order to do this the student has backed up their iPad. This will allow the student to download all of their data once the iPad has been repaired and is ready to be used again.

There are two main ways to back up an iPad:

  1. Backing up using iCloud. During the Boot Camp at the start of the year all students were instructed on how to set their iPads to back up to iCloud automatically. They can use their Apple ID to set up an iCloud account and they can set which apps they want to back up. However, iCloud only provides 5 gigabytes (GB) of data to backup for free so it is recommended that photos and videos are not set to back up to iCloud as they can consume the 5 GB quite quickly. (It is recommended photos and videos on the iPad are backed up to their St Patrick’s College Google Drive account.) Backing up to iCloud is the primary form of back up and the advantage is that it can back up automatically while connected to Wi-Fi. The drawback of backing up to iCloud is that if it is the only form of backup, restoring an iPad can from iCloud can take many hours. That is why it is also recommended to back the iPad up regularly to iTunes using a computer.

  2. Backing up using iTunes on a computer. While automatically backing up to iCloud can be the primary method of backing up, it is also recommended that the iPad is regularly backed up to a computer at home using iTunes. The big advantage of backing up the iPad to a computer using iTunes is that the backup is quite quick and restoring an iPad from iTunes on a computer is much quicker than restoring one from iCloud. The downside of backing up the iPad to a computer using iTunes is that it is not automatic and relies on user diligence doing it regularly.

Instructions on backing the iPad can be found on the iPad Parent Support website at

Mark Holland

Director of ICT