23 useful iPhone tricks and hidden features to make your life easier
- You may not be using your iPhone to its fullest potential.
- The iPhone can do a lot, but many of its best features are buried in various menus you may not even know about.
- From perfect overhead shots to a hidden dark mode, watch the video above for 23 tricks and hidden features on your iPhone that will make your life easier.
- Visit BusinessInsider.com for more stories.
Following is a transcript of the video.
Michelle Yan: If you're like the millions of iPhone users in this world, you might think you're using your phone to its fullest potential. But there are so many hidden features that you may not know about.
Here are 23 of the most useful iPhone tricks to make your life easier.
1. Enable dark-mode
Let's start with the iPhone's hidden dark-mode feature. Sure, you can dim your screen from the Control Center, but there's a hidden feature to make your screen even darker. Go to Settings, General, Accessibility, enable Zoom. Now, triple tap the screen with three fingers. Select Choose Filter. Click Low Light. If you wanna disable it, just triple tap the screen with three fingers again, and select None.
2. Customize your control center
While in the Settings, you can also customize your Control Center. So go to Settings, Control Center, Customize Controls. Add, remove, and rearrange various controls.
3. Screen recording
While you're customizing the Control Center, you can add the Screen Recording function, which will easily enable you to record your screen. Then, you can bring up the Control Center and tap the record button. The phone will record the screen without audio. Tap "record" when finished. The video is saved with your photos. You can't record audio coming from the phone, but you can use the phone's mic to record your own audio.
4. Automatically back-up your photos
Now, go back to the main Settings screen and tap your name. Go to iCloud, Photos, and switch iCloud Photos to "on". This will automatically upload all your photos and videos to iCloud.
5. Automatically back-up your apps
You can also set other backups for things like Mail, Messages, and other individual apps.
6. Automatically back-up your phone
Or scroll down to iCloud Backup and click Back Up Now to back up things like app data, settings, and photos.
7. Organize notifications
If you wanna organize your notifications, select Notifications on the main Settings screen. Notifications are grouped by app, but you can change that with each app. For example, you can choose to have your messages all show up individually. Go to Notifications. Select an app, and choose how you want to organize the notifications.
8. Show notification previews
You can also disable Notification previews for specific apps. Select an app and change Show Previews to Never.
9. Create custom vibrations
And speaking of notifications, you can create custom alerts for your calls and texts that can be assigned to your contacts. This can help you know exactly who is trying to reach you without looking at your phone. From the main Settings, select Sounds & Haptics, Ringtone, Vibration, Create New Vibration, tap out a pattern, and save it.
10. Create custom alerts
Next step, to assign it to a specific contact, go to your address book, choose the contact, tap Edit, select the tone or vibration you want to assign, then press Done.
11. Use the thesaurus
If you wanna sound super smart in your texts, just use the ... [thesaurus]. Go to General in the main Settings and select Dictionary. Click here, and add the one you wanna use.
12. Customize text replacement
And if you have a word or a phrase that you use a lot that the iPhone keeps auto-correcting, just add it to the Dictionary. Select Text Replacement in the General menu under Settings. Tap the plus sign and enter the word you want it to remember in both fields.
13. Set emergency SOS
If you're ever in trouble, the iPhone can be set to send an emergency call. Scroll down to Emergency SOS, enable Auto Call, and Call with Side Button. Pressing the power button five times, or pressing and holding power and volume up or down will make an emergency call.
14. Disable in-app ratings and reviews
A little below the Emergency SOS setting is iTunes & App Store. From here, you can disable all those annoying requests to rate apps. Just select disable In-App Ratings & Reviews.
15. Get the perfect overhead shot
Scrolling down even further in the Settings menu is the Camera. Go in here, and turn on the Grid setting. This will help you to take perfect overhead shots. When you hold the phone over something to take a photo, two crosshairs will appear. Your phone is perfectly level when they line up.
16. Set up a personal hotspot
Going back all the way up in the Settings menu is the Personal Hotspot, which will let you use your iPhone as a personal router. Just enable your iPhone's hotspot setting, and its data signal will be shared. Go to Settings, Personal Hotspot, set a password, switch the Hotspot to "on." Your iPhone will appear under available WiFi networks. Connect by entering the password. Be aware, this will rely on your phone's data, so don't download any extremely large files.
17. Go to settings with Siri
Those are all the settings to adjust and change. But if you're ever in another app and you wanna quickly get to Settings, all you have to do is say, "Hey Siri, go to Settings," and she will bring you right there.
18. Quick access with Siri
You can also get quick access to things like passwords and your flashlight. All you gotta do is ask. "Hey Siri, turn on a flashlight."
Siri: It's on.
19. Swipe to delete in calculator
Michelle Yan: Ever type in the wrong number in your calculator? Just swipe, and it will delete the last-entered digit.
20. Tape measure
And speaking of numbers, the iPhone has a built-in tape measure, perfect for all those times you don't have one handy. The Measure app uses augmented reality to measure everyday objects. It's not as accurate as a tape measure, but it does give you some pretty close approximations.
21. Turn your keyboard into a mouse trackpad
You can also turn your keyboard into a mouse trackpad. Start typing text in any app, force press on the keyboard, the letters will disappear, and it will let you move your cursor around a block of text.
22. Sign a document
If you ever need to sign a document, you can do it straight from your phone. Preview the attachment in the Mail app. Tap the toolbox icon and then tap the Signature button in the Markup preview. Sign the document using your finger on the touch screen, and then tap Done again. Place the signature where it belongs in the document, and then tap Done again.
23. Mark up any screenshot
Finally, you can mark up any screenshot to add text, highlights, or just draw on it.
What was your favorite trick? Let us know in the comments.
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