How To: Apple Has a Killer New Word Game Puzzle Called Quartiles on iOS 17.5

Apple Has a Killer New Word Game Puzzle Called Quartiles on iOS 17.5

Apple's newest software update, iOS 17.5 includes one killer new feature for people who like word games: another lexical challenge to complement the crossword puzzles that Apple News already has.

Apple introduced its new Puzzles section to the Apple News app last year for iOS 17, iPadOS 17, and macOS 14 Sonoma, giving News+ subscribers two daily puzzles to play: Crossword and Crossword Mini. First discovered by Gadget Hacks during the beta period, News+ subscribers now have a new game called Quartiles starting in iOS 17.5, iPadOS 17.5, and macOS 14.5 Sonoma, released May 13.

If you know anything about statistics, you'd know that quartiles divide a dataset into four equal parts, each containing 25% of the data. They help to understand the distribution of a dataset and identify central tendencies and variations within it. If you apply the basic concept — splitting something into four roughly equal sections — to a word, you get a fun but challenging spelling game.

To play, head to the Following tab, tap "Puzzles," and open one of the daily games. You'll start with a tutorial when you first open a Quartiles word puzzle on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac. It explains that one part of a word is a tile.

And that you can use one to four tiles to form words. You start with 20 tiles in a grid and combine them to form words of one, two, three, or four tiles.

Each puzzle has five quartiles, each of which gives you 8 points. Find all five to net a 40-point bonus for a total of 80 points. You also get 1 point for one-tile words, 2 for two-tile words, and 4 for three-tile words.

After you build a word on the Quartiles board, tap the checkmark button to score it. If it's not a valid word, it will tell you.

Tap the ellipsis (•••) button at the top to find an option to "Sort Found Quartiles." Selecting this will either put your found quartiles in the top or bottom rows of the grid. You can also use the shuffle button at the bottom to scramble the tiles, giving you a fresh perspective.

The icon opposite the shuffle button with the lines and arrows locks and unlocks the grid's found quartile tiles. That way, you can shuffle all tiles on the grid of just the remaining ones needed for the other quartile words.

Your total score for the game shows above the words found, a list you can expand to view what words you've already put together. To see your current rank for the game, tap the ellipsis (•••) button and choose "Rankings." Each game has five tiers ranging from 0 to 100 points.

You can find all five quartiles first, then move on to the smaller words, or you can just find whatever words you can find as you find them. Once you reach Top Rank with 100 points, you can continue playing to earn even more points. After finding all five quartiles, when you open the found words list, it will now tell you how many words are left to find if you want to try for a perfect score.

Once you solve all five quartiles, you can still shuffle the tile grid to help you locate more words to build. However, you have to ensure the quartiles button in the bottom right is toggled off to unlock shuffling.

Tap the ellipsis (•••) button to find more options, like "How to Play," which opens the tutorial again, and "Reveal All Words," which does just what it says. However, revealing all words completes the puzzle and may exclude it from stats in the Scoreboard, possibly ruining your winning streak.

From the Quartiles homepage or Puzzles homepage, tap the Leaderboards icon to see the Daily Score and compare your numbers against those of your friends or global users. You can also use the "Current" drop-down menu to see the previous Leaderboards on Game Center.

You can play Quartiles puzzles offline with iOS and iPadOS 17.5's new automatic downloads option for puzzles in the settings for Apple News. These automatic downloads include crosswords too. Turning it off will turn it off for all puzzles.

In-progress Quartiles puzzles will show up on your other Apple devices running older software, but you'll be instructed to update to iOS 17.5, iPadOS 17.5, or macOS 14.5 if you try to open them.

Just updated your iPhone? You'll find new features for Podcasts, News, Books, and TV, as well as important security improvements and fresh wallpapers. Find out what's new and changed on your iPhone with the iOS 17.5 update.

Cover photo and screenshots by Justin Meyers/Gadget Hacks

Be the First to Comment

Share Your Thoughts

  • Hot
  • Latest