How To: Your iPhone Has a Hidden Text-to-Speech Tool That'll Read Articles, Books, News, and Other Text Out Loud to You
You may prefer reading news stories, web articles, and books on your iPhone over listening to them in spoken form. Still, sometimes it's necessary when driving, walking, cycling, cleaning, working, or performing other activities requiring a little multitasking. To help you out, Apple has a text-to-speech service on your iPhone — you just need to know how to find and set it up.
Without realizing it, you may be giving away the GPS coordinates of your home, workplace, school, and other important or secret locations. Unless you've blocked the feature on your iPhone, location data is stored in almost every photo and video you take, and anyone you share the content with can find out where you are or were. But there are a few things you can do to safeguard the information.
When you look at your status bar on your iPhone, you'll almost always see the battery icon, which gives you an estimate of how much battery life you have left before you need to charge the device. What you won't always see is the exact battery percentage, but there are multiple ways to force it out of hiding.
There's a whole world of hidden iPhone features you might be missing out on, but this little-known tool for iOS is something you should definitely enable so that it's ready when you need it.
Whenever you need to type out a fraction on your iPhone, whether in a message, word document, presentation, math problem, recipe, or wherever else you need it, it's easy to use numbers and slashes. But there's a way to make fractions look more professional and easier to read straight from your keyboard.
How To: Disable the iMessage Typing Bubble Indicator So Others Don't Know You're Currently Active in the Chat
Apple's iMessage is one of the main reasons to use an iPhone, and there's a lot you can do in chats without being overly complicated. But there's one issue that continues to drive people nuts, and that's the blue typing bubble indicator with the moving ellipsis (•••). Can you stop it? Not officially, but there are workarounds.
It's easy to accumulate hundreds of Safari tabs on your iPhone, which makes hunting for specific tabs more difficult, especially when they're spread across different groups. Having too many tabs can even slow down Safari itself. You can close all tabs in a group quickly, but not if you want to save some. To prevent this mess, Safari can automatically weed out the tabs it thinks you don't need.
Apple's Wallet app lets you store boarding passes, concert tickets, gym memberships, vaccination cards, movie stubs, rewards cards, insurance info, student IDs, and more in one place on your iPhone, and you just double-click the Home or Side button to access them. Unfortunately, many cards and passes are not officially supported — but that doesn't mean you can't add them.
There is no iPad version of Apple's Calculator app, so you won't find it on your Home Screen, in your App Library, or as a shortcut in the Control Center. But that doesn't mean your iPad doesn't have an official calculator.
Night Shift, Dark Mode, Reduce White Point, and Zoom's Low Light Filter all help reduce the harmful effects on your body's clock that bright iPhone and iPad screens have at night. But there's another option on iOS and iPadOS that turns your entire display red, and it's useful for so much more than just late-night browsing in bed.
Your iPhone goes with you pretty much everywhere you go, and unless you have unlimited data on your cellular plan, you've probably connected to dozens of Wi-Fi hotspots over the years. Wi-Fi passwords are saved to your iPhone so you can auto-connect to the router or personal hotspot again, but finding the plain text password for a network hasn't always been easy.
There are many ways to open up the media account settings for your Apple ID on your iPhone, but they all require two or more steps. However, there is a hidden trick Apple hasn't told anybody about that can get there in one, and it's not Siri.
How To: The Hidden Gesture in Your iPhone's Mail App You Should Definitely Be Using for All Your Email Accounts
There's a feature hiding in your iPhone's Mail app you may have missed but should definitely know about. It gives you quick access to something you'd typically have to dig around in folders to find.
You can double-tap most maps on your iPhone to zoom in, and tap once with two fingers to zoom out. And I'm sure you're more than familiar with the pinch gesture for zooming. But there's an even better way to zoom in and out on maps, and you can do it with one hand tied behind your back.
A little-known setting on your iPhone gives you the power to change the color of certain contact names and email addresses when drafting an email. Customizing the color works well for visually separating contacts at a glance, and it can even help you from sending an email to the wrong person.
A low-key iPhone feature that's been around since iOS 10 can make the iMessages you send to family and friends more exciting overall. One particular element is, if you'll forgive my decades-old slang, "da bomb" for emoji.
Gmail uses TLS, or Transport Layer Security, by default for all email communications, so all of your emails will use the standard encryption as long as the recipients also support TLS. But there's a way to add even more security to your Gmail emails, and you can use your iPhone's Mail app to do it.
While hitting snooze won't help you much if you fall back asleep, it can help you wake up more gently. However, your iPhone's default nine-minute snooze may be too long or too short for your preferences. If you tend to fall back asleep quickly, you might be better with a two-minute snooze.
Apple automatically converts most URLs in the Messages app into rich link previews, but they aren't always pretty, and sometimes you just want to see the full URL instead. While there is no setting on iOS, iPadOS, or macOS that disables rich link previews in the Messages app, there is an easy way to show the URL complete with the scheme, domain name, and path.
How To: The Trick to Managing iCloud Contact Groups Right from Your iPhone (Since Apple's Contacts App Won't Let You)
You can view and hide iCloud contact groups on your iPhone, but Apple won't let you create or delete groups or add or delete contacts from any groups unless you're on a tablet or computer. Why Apple refuses to add a group management tool to Contacts on iOS is anybody's guess, but there is a workaround you can use instead.