Your iPhone has a few tricks up its sleeve.
Even though you use your iPhone every single day, you may not realize how powerful and feature-packed it really is. In fact, your iPhone has a few tricks up its sleeve that you probably don’t know about. With the new release of iOS 12, we wanted to share some tips so you can take full advantage of your smartphone. They’re extremely convenient and fun, and they’ll hopefully help save you a little time, too!
1.Control Your iPhone Just By Tilting Your Head
This one’s a tool that’s aimed at making the iPhone more accessible, but controlling your handset with your head does have a futuristic feel about it!
Go to > Settings > General > Accessibility > Switch Control > Switches> Add New Switch > Camera > then select Left or Right Head Movement. Once you’ve done that, select Tap and then go back and turn Switch Control on.
A blue box will show up and move around your screen – just tilt your head whilst looking at your phone and it will select whichever option the box is on as if you’d tapped your phone. Wow.
2. Find The Best Phone Signal Anywhere With This Weirdly Techy Hack
If we told you that *3001#12345#* was a magic number, you’d probably laugh in our faces, but it really is. Stick it into your iPhone’s dialer and tap the call button. A weird sub menu will open up and you’ll wonder how you’ve found your way into this alternative iPhone dimension.
At the top, you’ll notice a number and that indicates just how good or bad your current signal is. If the number is near to -50 you’ve got the best signal around if it’s nearer to -120 it’ll basically be impossible to call/text anyone. Wander around and watch the numbers change!
3. Start a Group FaceTime Call
You’ve probably FaceTimed a million times with your family and friends, but have you ever FaceTimed several of them simultaneously? Here’s how:
- Open the FaceTime app on your iPhone
- Tap the + button on the top right of your screen
- Enter the name or number of the person you want to call first
- Enter up to 30 additional contacts
- Tap Video or Audio to place your FaceTime call
4. Make Your iPhone Flash When You Get a Notification
If you’d rather have a visual cue over an auditory one, you should know that your iPhone’s LED light can actually flash anytime you get pinged. Just make sure you don’t have the setting on at a theater! Here’s how you can turn the setting on:
- Open your settings app
- Tap “General”
- Tap “Accessibility”
- Scroll down a little bit
- Tap “Enable LED Flash for Alerts”
5. Customize Text Messages When You Ignore a Call
We get it — you’re busy and sometimes you have to ignore a call. But rather than leaving your friends and loved ones hanging, the least you can do is send a text. Sometimes you don’t have time for that. To help, your iPhone has three pre-written options (“Sorry, I can’t talk right now,” “I’m on my way,” and “Can I call you later?”), and of course the button that lets you type your own text. You may not have known you can customize and overwrite the other three options. Here’s how:
- Open your Settings app
- Tap “Phone”
- Tap “Respond with Text”
- Tap which field you want to edit
- Enter new text
6. One-Handed Keyboard
Smartphone displays keep getting bigger, which makes typing difficult, especially with one hand. Your iPhone actually has a feature that shifts the keyboard over a smidgen so you can use one hand to type and the other to do whatever else it is that you need to do. Here’s how to enable the feature:
- Hold down the emoji or globe icon on the bottom left of the keyboard
- Select the left- or right-handed keyboard icon
- Tap the arrow in the blank space that’s created by the keyboard shift to go back to normal
7. Invert Your Screen for Using Your iPhone at Night
If you want a “dark mode” that changes your interface from light colors to mostly black, this setting will help. Your iPhone’s “Smart Invert Colors” feature only inverts the user interface, so images and app icons are the same.
- Tap Settings
- Tap General
- Tap Accessibility
- Tap Display Accommodations
- Tap Invert Colors
- Toggle Smart Invert
8. Use the Document Scanner in the Notes App
Apple has implemented a convenient document scanner right in the Notes app. Here’s how you access it:
- Open the Notes app
- Create a new note or open an existing one
- Tap the + icon that’s located above your iPhone’s keyboard in the center
- Tap Scan Documents
- Use the shutter button or one of your iPhone’s volume buttons to capture a photo of your document
- Adjust the corners of the document by tapping and dragging them, if necessary
- Tap Save
9. Offload Unused Apps
You’ve probably gotten a “Storage Almost Full” message a handful of times, and you may have even deleted some apps and photos to make room to install iOS 12, especially if you have a 16 GB iPhone. This new feature will save you a ton of stress and space over time. It automatically deletes apps that you don’t use without deleting their documents and data. Here’s how to offload apps and save precious storage space:
- Tap Settings
- Tap iTunes & App Store
- Toggle Offload Unused Apps at the bottom
- The deleted apps will be grayed-out on your home screen, and they can be reinstalled with a simple tap
10. Hey Siri
We have a love-hate relationship with Siri. Siri may not be as smart as Alexa on our Amazon Echo, but Siri is much more portable. To make Siri even more accessible, you should enable Hey Siri, which lets you use Siri without pressing the home button on your iPhone. Here’s how you turn it on:
- Open the Settings app
- Scroll down and select Siri
- Toggle to Allow “Hey Siri!”
Bonus tip: If you ever lose your iPhone at home, just shout “Hey Siri” and you should hear a tone. Keep doing it until you find your phone. Sure, you can always log into iCloud and use Find My iPhone, but this method is just as effective, and it takes less time.
11. Use your Keyboard as a Trackpad
You may not have known that your iPhone’s keyboard can double as a trackpad. This way you can move your cursor much more accurately instead of tapping and holding on the screen to bring up the magnifying glass. To use this feature, you need an iPhone 6S or later.
- While you are typing a message, firmly press and hold anywhere on the keyboard to activate the trackpad
- Drag your finger around to move your cursor through the text
- When the cursor is where you want it to be, just let go
If you have an older iPhone that doesn’t have 3D touch, we recommend you install the third-party keyboard, Gboard, which lets you use the spacebar as a mini trackpad to swipe through text.
Bonus keyboard tip:
Rather than tapping the 123 button at the bottom left of the keyboard, tapping the character you want, and then tapping the 123 button again, just hold the 123 button, slide your thumb to the character you want to use, then lift your thumb up off your screen. The character will be input, and your keyboard will return to normal without taking the extra step of tapping the 123 button again.
12. Use Your iPhone as a Level
Most people rarely use the Compass app that’s preinstalled on their iPhone. Within the app is another tool you may not have known about: a spirit level. Here’s how you easily access it:
- Open up the Measure app
- Tap Level at the bottom right
- Lay your phone flat against the surface you need to check levelness for
If you tap the screen, you can measure the difference between the two surfaces. The red margin shows how much the two angles vary.
13. Backspace on the Calculator
The Calculator app on the iPhone just doesn’t work as well as the original thing. Because there’s no tactile feel to it, you may accidentally press a key you didn’t mean to. So, you click the C or AC button to start over, right? WRONG. The iPhone calculator app has had a backspace button all along! It’s as easy as a single step:
- Just swipe to the left or the right at the top of the screen where the numbers are displayed. Your swipe will delete the number you tapped last.
14. Hide Photos
Sometimes you have photos in your camera roll that your mom wouldn’t be proud of. 🙊 When you hand your iPhone over to someone else, they may swipe and see something you wouldn’t want them to. Fortunately, you can prevent that from happening by hiding certain photos.
- Open the photos app
- Open the album where the photo(s) you want to hide reside
- Tap Select at the top right
- Select the photo(s) you want to hide
- Tap the share icon at the bottom left
- Tap the hide icon at the bottom right
- Tap Hide Photo
15. Set a Sleep Timer
If you like to listen to music or podcasts before you fall asleep, you’re going to love this trick. The iPhone includes a timer in the clock app that can stop audio playback from any app.
- Open the Clock app
- Select Timer at the bottom right
- Set how long you want the timer to be
- Tap When Timer Ends
- Scroll to the bottom of the list and tap Stop Playing
- Tap Set at the top right of your screen
- Press the Start button
- Drift off to sleep without worrying about your iPhone battery being dead in the morning from leaving your music on