How to Add Speed Dials to Your iPhone

Last Updated Nov 11, 2008 9:23 AM EST

As a new iPhone owner (it's true -- yippee!), I'm astounded that Apple failed to engineer any kind of speed-dial option. In an ideal world, I'd be able to snap a photo of, say, my boss or favorite client, then put a thumbnail on the home page for one-tap dialing.

There are third-party apps that add speed-dial capabilities, including a few free ones, but I'm partial to the DIY option presented in the above video. It's pretty straightforward: All you do is type the person's number into the Safari address bar, tack on .tel.qlnk.net, and then tap Go. (Watch the vid for complete instructions.)

My sole complaint is that when you tap the newly created speed-dial icon, you then have to tap the Call button that pops up. So technically it's a two-tap speed dial. But it's still very handy.

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    Rick Broida, a technology writer for more than 20 years, is the author of more than a dozen books. In addition to writing CNET's The Cheapskate blog, he contributes to CNET's iPhone Atlas.