The iPhone is known for its ease of use, but there's a lot of great stuff you can do if you dig just a little bit beneath the surface. These handy tips can help you get things done faster, enjoy longer battery life, improve your photos and more.
How do you know who's trying to text or call you when your phone is in your pocket? You don’t need a smartwatch. Just pick a custom vibration alert for that contact by selecting Edit in the top right corner, then tapping the Vibration option under Ringtone or Text Tone. There, you'll be able to choose from seven standard vibration alerts. Even better, you can select Create New Vibration and tap out a pattern of your own. I chose the beat to the Cosmos soccer team for my best friend.
Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but it’s always worth trying. When you find that you don’t have enough 4G signal strength to download that email or share that Facebook photo, try toggling cellular data on and off quickly. Just slide up from the bottom of the screen to open the Control Center, tap the airplane icon to enter airplane mode, then tap it again to deactivate airplane mode after a few seconds. A good portion of the time, you'll wind up with a better signal.
There are plenty of ways to make your iPhone's battery last longer, including using Auto Brightness for the display and enabling Low Power mode. But apps also play a role, especially if they're tracking your location even when they're not in use. Go to Settings/Privacy and Tap Location Services. In general, we don't recommend that you turn these services completely off, but we do recommend that you go through your list of apps on this screen and decide which should be set to Never or While Using. Don't select Always unless it's a maps or navigation app.
Use this trick if you don't have a Bluetooth speaker with you and you want to pump up the volume. Face the speakers on the bottom of your iPhone toward the nearest wall to bounce the audio off it. Whether you're in the kitchen cooking dinner or in the bathroom getting ready for work, the reverberation should make whatever you're listening to sound louder.
When you're at home or work and want better reception, you can use Wi-Fi calling so that your conversations aren't going over the cellular network. This should result (depending on the speed of your Wi-Fi) in clearer calls and could save you money if you're not on an unlimited minutes plan. Under Settings, scroll down and tap Phone, then select Wi-Fi calling and enable the feature. (You may need to go through a few more screens from your carrier before it's all set up.)
Maybe you have a snooping spouse or you just don’t want your sensitive messages — or parts of them — falling into the wrong hands. Redact those questionable exchanges by pressing and holding on the text in question, then tapping the More button and then the Trash icon on the left bottom part of the screen.
It's not that obvious to most iPhone shutterbugs, but you can increase the exposure on the iPhone's camera when you're trying to let in more light. To do it, you just tap on the area of the live view of the photo you'd like to brighten, then drag your finger up on the little sun that appears. You can lower the exposure as well by dragging your finger down on the screen.