How To: Unlock Your iPhone's Power Sounds to Hear Shutdown and Bootup Chimes Every Time You Turn Off and Restart Your Device
When you shut down, boot up, or restart your iPhone, it never makes a sound. Many computers and Android devices do, so why can't your iPhone? Well, some of you may never need to ask that question again.
How To: Use Live Captions on Your iPhone for Real-Time Transcriptions of Any Audio — Calls, Videos, Podcasts, and More
With Apple's latest accessibility feature, you can get live transcriptions of anything you're listening to on or around your iPhone. Real-time captions work for phone calls, video conferences, FaceTime, music, podcasts, streaming media, movies, games, and more — even someone sitting right next to you talking.
Whenever you're on an audio call in the Phone or FaceTime app and accidentally press your iPhone's Side button, the call ends immediately. It's a helpful feature for those who like to terminate calls that way, but it's flat-out annoying for everyone else who inadvertently ends calls prematurely. Now, everybody wins because you can choose what happens during calls when you lock your device.
You can play background sounds on your iPhone to help you focus, stay calm, or fall asleep, giving you a personal sound machine wherever you go. Even better, there's a way to set each of your apps to play one of Apple's six ambient soundscapes automatically. When you open the app, its assigned sound plays, then it stops when you exit or switch to another app.
If you get distracted or stressed out easily, your iPhone might be able to help you focus or calm you down. It can even help you fall asleep with white noise, and you don't have to install a third-party app or buy an audio track to turn your iPhone into a personal sound machine.
The volume buttons on the side of your iPhone are for more than just adjusting volume levels for media, ringers, alerts, Siri, and other sounds and voices. You can use them to perform different actions inside certain apps, and you can even create custom actions using the Shortcuts app. It's not exactly button mapping, but it's as close as you'll get without jailbreaking iOS.
It's easy to start panicking when you delete an important email, but it's even easier to undo the mistake on your iPhone or iPad. You can retrieve an accidentally deleted email instantly on iOS and iPadOS with the help of a hidden gesture, and you'll be much more efficient with the Mail app once you learn how to use it.
How To: Snap Photos on Your iPhone Hands-Free for Better Selfies, Group Shots, and Low-Light Pictures
You can take a photo on your iPhone with just one tap or press, but you can also use the Camera app hands-free for more impressive images. Doing so lets you take more detailed selfies, include your whole group in the frame, or get steadier results in Night mode — and it's easy to accomplish. Spoiler alert: using "Hey Siri" is not enough.
How To: Use Your iPhone or Apple Watch as a Remote Control for Your iPad Using This Hidden Built-in Feature
There's a hidden feature on iOS that will turn your iPhone or Apple Watch into a remote control for your nearby iPad or other Apple devices — and it's nowhere near as complicated as Switch Control.
While it's not usually the first thing everyone looks at after installing a new iOS software update, I'd give the new accessibility features on your iPhone priority attention because there are some highly valuable tools that even users without disabilities can enjoy.
The App Library is an excellent tool for browsing all the apps on your iPhone, especially since it includes every one of the home screen bookmarks you've made for websites and shortcuts. But it's all the way past your last home screen page. If you have a lot of visible home screen pages, that's a lot of swiping to open the App Library. Luckily, there is a trick to accessing it faster.
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.
How To: Sick of Yellow Links in Notes? Make Them Any Color You Want with These Hidden iPhone, iPad, and Mac Settings
If you're tired of the default yellow link colors in your Notes app, which I find hard to look at in light mode, there's a way to change them to another color on your iPhone, iPad, and/or Mac.
If you can't curb your TikTok obsession, at least make it more efficient by taking your hands out of the equation. So when you're eating breakfast, working on your computer, or using your hands for another non-TikTok task, you don't even have to touch your iPhone or iPad to scroll through all of those videos in your feed. Instead, you can just tell it what to do, and it'll listen.
After just a few hours, your iPhone's app switcher can become cluttered and even chaotic enough that you won't even want to use it. If you like your app switcher clean and tidy, with only your current session's apps accessible, there's a trick to force-quitting all apps simultaneously rather than one by one.
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.
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.
I find ringtones and text tones fairly annoying, so my iPhone is almost always set to vibrate on silent mode. Unfortunately, that causes me to miss phone calls and text messages when the device isn't in my hands or pockets. While I hate missing alerts, I'm still reluctant to switch to ring mode — and that's where another iOS and iPadOS feature helps out.
Whether you subscribe to Apple TV+ or not, the TV app on your iPhone is a great place to watch movies and TV shows. On the surface, it looks like a pretty straightforward app, but hidden features are lurking in the shadows that can enhance how you use it.
Auto-Correction only improves with time, but after 15 years of continuous development by Apple, it's still nowhere near perfect on the iPhone. However, a few hidden features in iOS can help avoid or mitigate future autocorrect failures, one of which warns you every time it's about to make a word change.