How to Set Up and Start using your new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3

BY Gautam Prabhu

Published 24 Oct 2014

iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3

If you’ve just got your shiny new iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3 and can’t wait to use it, here’s our step-by-step guide where we walk you through the set up process, so you can start using it.

  • Turn on your iPad Air by pressing the Sleep/Wake or Power button at the top.
  • You will be greeted by the Hello screen as seen below. Swipe from left to right on the screen to begin the set up process.

iPad Air 2 Setup

  • You will be prompted to select the Language. Tap on your preferred language. It will set up the language.
  • Next select your country or region from the list.
  • You will be prompted to choose a Wi-Fi network. Tap on the preferred Wi-Fi network and enter the password for your Wi-Fi network (if it is a secure network), and tap on Join.
  • At this point, if you’ve a Cellular iPad, then it will activate your device, and inform you to check if there are any new settings available from your carrier after inserting the SIM. Tap on Continue to proceed.
  • Then choose if you want Location services to be enabled or disabled. If you want to use services like Find my iPad, which is recommended, enable it by taping on Enable Location Services option.
  • Here you can set up your iPad as a New iPad, or restore from iCloud Backup or from iTunes Backup. For the purpose of this guide, I’m setting up the iPad as a New iPad. If you want to transfer data such as your saved messages, email accounts, photos, notes, and other personal settings from your old iPad, then you can follow our guide if you need help.

iPad Air 2 Set Up


  • You will then be prompted to sign in with your Apple ID or create a Free Apple ID. If you already have an Apple ID, select sign in with Your Apple ID.

iPad Air 2 Setup


  • Enter the Apple ID and password, and tap on Next to continue. If you use different Apple IDs for iCloud and iTunes, then tap on Use different Apple IDs for iCloud and iTunes link below. You will be prompted to enter the Apple ID for iCloud and the iTunes separately.
  • If you’ve two-step verification setup, then it will inform you to verify your identify by entering the verification code sent to one of your trusted devices. Tap on Send.
  • Enter the four-digit verification code sent to your other trusted device.
  • You will be prompted to agree to the Terms and Conditions. Tap on the Agree button in the bottom right corner of the screen. You will again prompted with a popup asking you to agree to the Terms and Conditions. Tap on Agree to proceed.
  • It may take a few minutes to set up your Apple ID.
  • Next, you will get an option to either Use iCloud or Don’t Use iCloud. iCloud lets you access your music, photos, contacts, calendars and more on all your iOS devices automatically. I would recommend using it, so tap on the Use iCloud option.
  • You will now be informed that Find my iPad service will be automatically enabled when you use iCloud. Find My iPad is a free service that allows you to locate, lock, and erase your iPad if you lose it. Find My iPad also includes Activation Lock, so someone will need your Apple ID and password to erase or reactivate your iPad. Tap on Next at the top right corner to continue.
  • You will now get the option to select the email ids and phone numbers that can be used to contact you via iMessage and FaceTime. Deselect the email ids and phone numbers you don’t want associated with this iPad and click next.
  • You will get an option prompting you to upgrade to iCloud Drive, which stores your files in iCloud so that they can be accessed on all your devices. You can upgrade to iCloud Drive later as well so for the purpose of this guide, I’m selecting Not Now. It will prompt you if you’re sure you don’t want to upgrade to iCloud Drive, tap on Continue to proceed.
  • It will update the iCloud settings, and give you an option to setup Touch ID, so that you can use your fingerprint in place of your passcode or Apple ID password for purchases. To start the setup process, place your finger or thumb on the Home button.
  • Now Lift and rest your finger on the Home button repeatedly. You will see that the fingerprint animation on the display fills up with red color as you progress. Move your finger slightly between scans. It should take less than a minute to set it up.
  • After the entire fingerprint animation turns red, it will prompt you to adjust your grip to capture the edges of your fingerprint. Tap on Continue to proceed.
  • Again place your finger on your Home button, this time however, lift and rest the edge of your finger on Home Button repeatedly.
  • After the entire fingerprint animation turns red, it will inform that Touch ID was successfully set up, and this finger can now be used for unlocking your iPad. Tap on Continue.
  • It will now prompt you to create a Passcode. Enter a passcode, and re-enter it when you prompted to do so in the next screen.
  • You will now be asked if you want to use your fingerprint instead of your Apple ID password when buying from the iTunes & App Store. Tap on Use for iTunes & App Store or Set Up Later to continue.
  • Next, you will prompted to set up iCloud Keychain. iCloud Keychain stores website usernames, passwords, credit card numbers and expiration dates you save with iCloud, and keeps them up to date across all your iOS devices and your Mac computers that you have approved.
  • If you have setup iCloud Keychain previously on another device, then you can approve it from one of your other devices using iCloud Keychain or use your iCloud Security Code. You can also have the option not to restore passwords. Tap on the appropriate option to continue.
  • Next tap on Automatically Send if you want to send diagnostics and usage data to Apple. If not, tap on the Don’t Send option.
  • You will now be greeted by the Welcome to iPad screen.
  • Tap on Get Started to go to the Home screen, and start using your new iPad Air.

iPad Air 2 Home screen

Let me know how it goes. Please feel free to drop us a line if you’ve any questions.