News: Apple Releases iOS 14.4 for iPhone, Featuring New Apple Watch Face & Updates to Camera, Bluetooth & Privacy
Buckle up, iPhone users, because it's update time! Apple just released its latest iPhone OS to the public, iOS 14.4. This new edition isn't the company's most ground-breaking, but it doesn't come up short, either — you'll find support for smaller QR codes in Camera, a new "Device Type" setting in Bluetooth, support for a new Apple Watch face, and a major privacy feature, among other new changes.
Even with the convenience of online storage like iCloud and Google Drive, data management can be a constant struggle on your iPhone. If you continuously find yourself having to delete messages, photos, videos, and other files to make room for other things, know that there's an easy way to free up space without erasing anything important or having to dig through documents and data yourself.
The benefit of going all-in on the Apple ecosystem is that your stuff is connected across all of your Apple products. That said, I really don't need every app I download on my iPhone appearing on my iPad, and vice versa. That's why addressing this setting is crucial for maintaining some level of order across your multiple iOS devices.
Do Not Disturb is the best way to block out all interruptions on your iPhone without having to power down. All notifications and alerts are silenced, but the same can't be said for phone calls. By default, repeat calls will bypass Do Not Disturb, which can be quite frustrating when you're in a movie, classroom, or board meeting. It's good for emergencies, but not for people who can't take the hint.
News: Apple's iOS 14.4 Release Candidate Out for iPhone, Includes Camera, Bluetooth & Privacy Updates
Apple has finally seeded the release candidate for iOS 14.4 to iPhone developers and public beta users, build 18D52. The update adds scanning support for smaller QR codes in Camera, the ability to classify Bluetooth devices to improve audio notifications, and alerts on the iPhone 12, 12 mini, 12 Pro, or 12 Pro Max for if the camera is detected not to be genuine. There's also a short list of bug fixes.
How To: This Discreet Panic Button for iPhone Will Help You Escape Bad Dates, Uncomfortable Encounters & Annoying People
Strange or uncomfortable encounters can be difficult to get away from sometimes if you're overly polite and don't want to hurt anybody's feelings. Thankfully, your iPhone can help save the day, providing you with a plausible excuse to exit the scene without having to conjure up some last-minute reason on the spot.
The iPhone doesn't stop at last year's excellent iPhone 12 lineup. Apple's been developing its iPhone 13 models for a while now, and there are a lot of rumors already with eight or nine months still to go until a release. This year, we're expecting four new models with similar sizes and features to 2020's offerings. If you want to know what makes the 2021 iPhones so different, we've got answers.
If you'd rather be gently relaxed out of bed instead of stressed out at loud alarm sounds, there are a few things you can do on your iPhone. One of your best options is to use carefully selected songs that start out calm and soothing and gradually increase in intensity and volume. But you could also use a more intense track you know will wake you up, only set to ascend in volume to ease you out of slumber.
You take a photo or video, send it to a friend, and they say, "Hey, I can't open this." More often than not, your friend won't be using an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac. Instead, they're likely trying to open the file with a non-Apple device. But this problem can be avoided if you know what setting to change.
Outside of iPhone releases, software updates are arguably the most exciting aspects of iOS life. It's like Christmas morning when your iPhone installs an update, as you dive through your device to find all the new features and changes Apple thought to include. With iOS 14.4, there are at least 10 such new additions just waiting for you to explore.
Most of the images in your iPhone's Photos app contain exchangeable image file format data known as Exif or EXIF data, which has several helpful uses. You can use countless apps capable of reading Exif data, many of which are paid or limited. But you already have an app on your iPhone that can give you important details about each image — and I'm not talking about the Photos app.
Since iOS 11, your iPhone has been capable of offloading hardly used apps to free up storage space for more useful data. But offloading only gets rid of the app's binary, meaning its documents and data are stored on your device in case you reinstall the app. That can take up a lot of space itself, so it's good to periodically review files for offloaded apps and purge the content you no longer need.
If your iPhone's home screen is littered with apps in no discernible order, and you rely on muscle memory to locate one when you need it, it gets harder with each new app icon added. Folders can help organize the mess, but you can also create your very own app picker or group of app pickers. They act similar to folders but show apps in a list and let you add the same app to multiple app pickers.
Let's say you're hanging a picture frame, and it doesn't look quite right. Sure, you could grab a spirit or bubble level, but maybe it's in another room or buried in a toolbox somewhere. Maybe you're away from home, away from your tools. As it turns out, you almost always have a level with you, and it's likely sitting in your pocket right now or resting in your hand as you read this article.
Highlight text, tap "Copy," open the app to paste the text into, long-press or double-tap where you want it, and hit "Paste." That's probably what you do when you need to copy text from one location to paste into another on your iPhone. It's a tried-and-true method, but there's a hidden trick for saving and sharing text on iOS that cuts down on that lengthy copy-paste process.
Videos hosted on Streamable may be fleeting or forever. So when you come across a cool video that you want to watch again later, it's a good idea to download it to your device in case it's one that disappears after a few months. There is no built-in download button in the Streamable player, but that doesn't mean you can't save anything on your iPhone.
If you've ever customized your app icons or played around with Shortcuts (previously called Workflow), you probably know how important URL scheme names are. Nearly all iOS apps assign themselves one of these names, and you need to know them if you want to add custom icons to your home screen or create a Shortcuts workflow that opens an app on your iPhone up.
Apple released the second public beta for iOS 14.4 today, Wednesday, Jan. 13. The most notable addition to this beta isn't user-facing — baked into 14.4 beta 2's code is evidence that Apple will start issuing warnings on iPhones using unapproved cameras. Of course, those warnings will only apply to phones that have had their cameras replaced.
While iOS 14.3 is available to everyone right now, Apple is currently working on iOS 14.4 in its beta programs, and the second iOS 14.4 beta just came out for developers. The public beta version of iOS 14.4 beta 2 was released soon after. But what's in these new betas?
If you surf the web on your iPhone, you no doubt run into this problem all the time: a website wants your location. It can happen when performing a location-based task, such as using a store locator, or whenever a web app just wants to deliver better ads or local recommendations. If you're tired of allowing or denying permission each time, there's an easy way to stop the annoying security pop-ups.
How To: This iOS Shortcut Makes Time Zone Conversions Conveniently Easy from Anywhere on Your iPhone
Working with people in different time zones can be difficult when scheduling a time to meet up virtually, whether it's on Zoom, FaceTime, another video chatting app, or just a good old-fashioned phone call. The time needs to be good for all parties, and trying to remember UTC offsets and doing mental math isn't easy. Luckily, there's an easier way to deal with time zones on your iPhone.
Apple just released iOS 12.5.1 (build number 16H22) for iPhone 5S, 6, and 6 Plus, as well as iPod touch 6th generation, in addition to iPadOS 12.5.1 for iPad Air, mini 2, and mini 3. The update fixes an issue in iOS 12.5 where Exposure Notifications could incorrectly display logging profile language.
With iOS 14, Apple finally lets us change the default browser on our iPhones. No longer do we need to settle for Safari if we'd prefer another option like Chrome or Firefox. However, we encourage you to consider switching your browser or your search engine — or both — to Ecosia. Here's why.
You know that you have Gmail on your iPhone. You get Gmail notifications, you see it in the app switcher, it's in the Settings app, and you even see the "Open" button instead of "Get" or the download icon in the App Store. But you simply cannot find the app on your home screen. If this situation sounds like something you're dealing with, there's an easy answer.
When it comes to mobile gaming, it's tough to beat Apple Arcade. With over 100 games and counting, there's something for everyone to play. That said, the ever-growing list of titles can make it difficult to find the games that are right for you. That's why Apple Arcade's sorting and filtering tools are essential for any subscriber.
Spotlight, Apple's system-wide search feature, lets you search for apps, contacts, messages, webpages, music, notes, and other content that's on and off your iPhone. On iOS, it's known as "Search," and you can access it by swiping your home screen down or swiping open the Today View screen. It's not exactly convenient, but an accessibility feature can unlock Search so you could open it from anywhere.
Countless third-party apps and services exist that can convert the videos on your iPhone into GIFs. With so many options available, the problem becomes which one to choose. Do you install something on the App Store that provides good quality but costs money, or should you use a shady online service where you have to jump through hoops to get the GIF? Your best option may be neither.
If you're like me, you're not too keen on being tracked. So when an app asks you if it can track your iPhone activity across other programs and websites for ads or data brokers, the answer is pretty much always "no." If you're tired of choosing "Ask App Not to Track" over and over again, there is a way to stop apps from even being able to ask in the first place.
Many podcasts you come across will tell you to check out the episode notes for information and links about whatever that show's topic is. Easy enough, unless you're using Apple Podcasts, where these episode notes don't appear to be anywhere at all. Luckily, they're just hiding in plain sight.
How To: The Easiest Way to Download High-Res Cover Art for Albums, Movies, Books, Podcasts, Apps & More — Right from Your iPhone
The internet is saturated with low-quality pictures, making it difficult to find a high-resolution image for specific albums, TV shows, movies, podcasts, music videos, apps, and books. Apple uses high-quality images, but it seems impossible to download cover art, posters, thumbnails, icons, and other images from within its apps on your iPhone. Now, with the help of a shortcut, it's as simple as can be.
If you just got an iPhone 12, 12 Pro, 12 Pro Max, or 12 mini, and you've never owned an iPhone before, some of the most basic tasks can be baffling. Shutting it down, force-restarting it, quitting apps, and even viewing the percentage of battery remaining sound simple but aren't very intuitive for new iPhone owners. Another big question mark is screenshots, and there are several ways to take them.
There are still and live wallpapers on your iPhone that can go dark when Dark Mode is active or light when Light Mode is on, but there's no easy way to do the same for custom backgrounds. That doesn't mean you're out of luck, though, because you can use Shortcuts to build a workaround until Apple gets us an official "Dark Mode" option for automation.
You don't need to take screenshots or make screen recordings to save photos and videos from other users on Instagram. While Instagram doesn't offer an official way to download others' posted content, dozens of shortcuts are available for iPhone that can do just that. But which one should you pick?
How To: Use Apple Music Wrapped to View Your Most Played Songs in 2020 from Apple Music or Your iPhone's Library
At the end of every year, Spotify analyzes your listening habits for the last 12 months and creates a colorful graphic showcasing your favorite artists, albums, artists, and more. Apple Music does have its own version called Replay, but it's just not very good.
How To: Quickly Generate Anonymous, Throwaway Email Addresses on Your iPhone to Keep Your Real Email Accounts Safe from Spam
A temporary email can go a long way. Using your actual email to sign up for a mailing list to receive 10% off a purchase doesn't make sense if you don't use the website much. It means you'll have to deal with spam emails from then on, which is why an anonymous email is perfect not to have to deal with all that trouble. And that's where the TempMail shortcut for your iPhone comes in handy.
The Calculator app is probably one of Apple's most-used apps on the iPhone, yet I meet people all of the time that don't know all of the little tricks there are to using it more efficiently. You may know most of them, but there's a chance you don't know every single one or simply forgot about them.
Users on Android could customize their app icons for some time, but it's a relatively new addition to the iPhone. You could change icons since iOS 12, but it really took off in iOS 14 and got even better in iOS 14.3. Still, it's not as easy as on Android, and you'll see a notification every time you open an app with your custom icon. However, there is a workaround to stop those annoying notifications.
Few apps on the iPhone give you ways to change their color scheme aside from Dark Mode in iOS 13 and later, but that doesn't mean you can't give an app a new color theme or filtered look. With the Shortcuts app in iOS 14 and later, it's totally possible, and it'll work in practically any app.
When iOS 14 came out, Apple released Translate, an app for translating voice and text between several languages (even within Safari). Unfortunately, it's not as comprehensive as some third-party apps or even Siri. That's why Apple uses Microsoft's translation services within Shortcuts. It may sound surprising, but we're not complaining since you can do some pretty awesome things with it.
News: iOS 14.4 Public Beta Available for iPhone with More App Clip Experiences, Tracking Requests & New Modem Firmware
The iOS 14.4 developer beta was pushed out a day ago, and now the iOS 14.4 public beta is out and ready for your iPhone. At first glance, there's not much to look at in the new beta release, and it's not yet known if it lays out the groundwork for missing features such as 5G data with dual SIMs, shared third-party app subscriptions, and Xbox Core Controller.