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Apple user's dictionary of tech jargon

David Price | May 10, 2016
From Arrangement Mode to Xcode: we explain all the jargon in our plain-English dictionary of tech terms, focusing on concepts that affect Apple fans

What is Lock?

Feature on iOS devices used to fix the display in either vertical or landscape orientation. Accessed via Control Centre.

What is Low Power Mode?

A cunningly streamlined mode available in iOS 9 and designed to prolong iPhone battery life. You will automatically be offered this mode when you hit 20 percent battery, but it can activated at any time via the Settings.

Low Power Mode makes your battery indicator turn yellowy orange.

What is Low Power Mode?

Apple user's dictionary of tech jargon: M-O

What is a Mac?

A type of personal computer made by Apple (that's right - technically a Mac is a PC too), at time of writing celebrating its 30th birthday. Check out our Mac reviews to find out more, but here's a summary of the range:

Apple laptops (or MacBooks) can be divided into the powerful MacBook Pro and the lighter MacBook Air. (Each of these are available in various screen sizes and component configurations.)

Apple makes three lines of Mac desktops: the general-purpose iMac, the cheaper, portable Mac mini, and the expensive, super-powerful Mac Pro. Again, both lines are available in various configurations.

What is a MacBook?

Apple's term for a Mac laptop computer. Several models are available, split into the more powerful MacBook Pro units, and the ultra-slimline MacBook Air models.

MacBook Pro laptops

What is a Mac mini?

A small desktop computer sold without a keyboard, monitor or mouse. See Mac Mini 2014 preview.

What is a Mac Pro?

Apple's high-end desktop computer. Looks a bit like a shiny little bin but is a lot better at video editing. (See new Mac Pro review)

Mac Pro review

What is Mail?

Stock program used to read email. It's installed with Mac OS X and iOS devices.

What is a megapixel?

It's a measure of a digital camera's capacity to capture detail. A megapixel is a million pixels, so an 8Mp camera, such as the one in the iPhone 6 Plus, has eight million pixels.

If the camera used to take a digital image and the screen used to display it both have a large number of pixels, the image will as a general rule appear extremely sharp and detailed.

However, see this: The iPhone camera and the megapixel myth

What is multitasking?

In the general sense, of course, this simply means the ability to do more than one thing at once. But in the tech world it refers to running two programs at once - something that historically, iPads and iPhones have been unable to do. (You might think you've got two apps running at once, but for most intents and purposes every app except the one you've got open right now is frozen in a static state.)


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