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Smartphone apps that could help emergency personnel save your life

(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Each week I receive tons of questions from my listeners, readers, and viewers about tech concerns, new products and all things digital.

Sometimes, choosing the most interesting questions to highlight is the best part of my job. This week, I received questions about past episodes, iPhone scanning, switching smartphone brands and more.

Do you have a question you’d like to ask me? I read every one!

Smartphone 911

Q: My parents are older. Is there a special setting on their smartphones so emergency personnel will know the medicines they take and to call me immediately in the event of an emergency? I worry about them.

A: Many folks use engraved metal accouterments to quickly inform first responders of any conditions or allergies important to the wearer. Our smartphones can provide the same information to emergency personnel and is accessible even when the phone is locked.

Paramedics and EMTs are trained to look for this feature when they arrive on a scene. You can also show your emergency contacts so loved ones can quickly learn about accidents or ER visits even if you are unconscious. The feature is free and easy to set up. It shouldn’t take you more than five minutes. Remember, it could very well save a life.

Coronavirus WFH tips

Q: I heard part of your show where you were talking about the tech to use during the coronavirus for your business and life. Is there a transcript that I can read? I always learn so much from you!

A: It’s a great example of the kind of tech info I like to broadcast. Relevant, life-changing and up-to-the-minute. Instead of reading through a transcript, you can hear the podcast or watch that exact episode again by joining the Komando Community, an exclusive social media platform for tech enthusiasts and fans of my show.

Wise shoppers will want to try the Community before signing on for the long-term, which is why you can enter promo code “Kim” at GetKim.com. You’ll find a trove of archived multimedia, which you can browse at your leisure.

Windows shortcuts

Q: You used to have a list of keyboard shortcuts on your site. I am using Windows 10 and find them quicker to get things done than using menus. Where can I find that list again?

A: Windows is pretty consistent with its shortcuts and you don’t have to learn too many new keystrokes from one version to the next. But along with its arsenal of new features, the latest Windows operating system also highlights certain shortcuts. One of my favorites is the Windows logo key + C, which activates Cortana.

The full list may appear intimidating, but most people find these different key combinations radically accelerate their productivity. Just learn the ones you’ll use most often and you won’t have to rely so heavily on your mouse.

Smartphone conversions

Q: I’m switching from an Android phone to an iPhone. My kids are making me! How do I make sure I don’t lose my photos, texts and other stuff?

A: Most users are aware that upgrading phones within the same brand is an easy task, thanks to cloud technology that connects multiple devices that share the same user. What is less known is how compatible Androids and iPhones are, at least where data backups are concerned.

The process is very similar to regular upgrades, just make sure to follow the instructions precisely and maintain a strong Wi-Fi connection. Once the two phones startcommunicating, you can transfer all those beloved photos, videos and music files without a hitch.

iPhone scanning secret

Q: I heard you say that you scan documents using your iPhone without using a special app. What’s the secret? Please share!

A: The secret is almost too obvious to believe. The latest version of Notes is a pretty heavy-duty app with improved search and organizational functions, as well as a special “scan” feature. The scanning option is integrated directly into one of the most overlooked iPhone apps and it’s incredibly easy to use.

Simply press the camera icon and you’re halfway there. While you’re rediscovering Notes, you may want to see its other game-changing additions.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.