13 iOS tips and tricks to turn you into an iPhone and iPad master
From new Siri smarts to split-screen browsing.
By Luke Johnson
Forget the iPhone 7, you don't need a shiny new smartphone to make the most of Apple's latest mobile delights. Many of them are software-based and have been added courtesy of iOS 10. Sure, if you've already splashed out on Apple's latest handset you'll get them out of the box, but if you're sporting an ageing iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, it's time to upgrade your existing device with the new iOS 10 download.
Not only does the iOS 10 download guarantee dozens of cool new features from a smarter Siri to a mass of new Messages options, unlike Apple's latest smartphone offering, it won't cost you a penny. Boom. Getting to grips with the latest patch doesn't need to be a chore either. With these iOS 10 tips and tricks you'll be a master in no time.
1. FIND PHOTOS USING FACES
The robot uprising has started and it's time to run in fear. If you're brave enough to stand up to the machines, you're going to have to get used to them knowing what you look like. Starting with your iOS 10 equipped iPhone. Apple has added facial recognition AI to group together pictures of people simple by looking through your snaps. By going Photos > Albums > People, you can see the mugs Apple has grouped together and assign names to them.
Now, in Photos, hitting the search button will let you hunt through your snaps not just by date or location, but who's in the shots. What to find images of you and bae at the beach without hours of scrolling, just type it in and marvel/cower as the machines use their brains to bring your desired snaps to the fore.
2. SEND A WHATSAPP USING YOUR VOICE
Hey, Siri, do something useful. Oh, you can now, brilliant. Having graduated over the summer, Siri is now smarter than ever and plays nice with a number of third-party apps for the first time, including the likes of WhatsApp.
Now, instead of dictating your messages to the digital PA to be sent out as texts, Siri will let you read out your commands to messaging services that are still actually relevant. All you've got to do is make sure your version of WhatsApp is up to date then bust out the correct vocal commands: "Hey, Siri. Send a WhatsApp to Alice..."
3. FILL YOUR MESSAGES WITH HILARIOUS GIFS
Who doesn't love a good GIF? Well thanks to iOS 10, it's now easier than ever to fill your messages with laughter-inducing moving images, and all without the need to spend 45 minutes scouring the web for the perfect witty response.
When you're in the Messages app, tapping the new App Store icon will bring a pop-up of additional input options. Tapping 'Images' here will let you scour a comprehensive catalogue of stills and GIFs. Helping you find the perfect GIF without the leg work, there's even a search box where you can drop keywords. Let the endless GIF back-and-forth commence.
4. SEE ONLY UNREAD EMAILS
We've all been there, dodging email replies with the promise to do it later, only for that message to be lost in the mass of incoming email, arrgh. You don't need to hide your phone and pretend you don't have 6,624 unread emails to navigate your way through though, with iOS 10 there's an easier option.
Now, when you open the Mail app, clicking the new icon in the bottom left corner - the one with three lines in a circle - will show only your unread email, filtering out the ones you've actually opened to give your a ready-made to-do list. Want to remain oblivious to the mound of unread emails? Simply tap the icon again and watch them once again disappear into the mix. Ah, bliss.
5. CLEAR ALL NOTIFICATIONS WITH A SINGLE PRESS
Select. Swipe. Delete. Repeat. That used to be the laborious process required to clear the 43 notifications that came through to your phone on a nightly basis if you wanted to abate your OCD needs for a clean, clutter-free device. But no more.
Now, a firm 3D press can help rid all your outstanding notifications in one fell swoop. Huzzah. When you pull down your Notifications window, 3D pressing the "X" in the top right corner will now give you a "Clear All Notifications" option. Tapping this will do what you expect and save you from repetitive strain injuries. You'll need an iPhone 6S for it to work though.
6. DELETE APPLE'S STOCK APPS
Finally! Apple has given us all what we've long been calling for the ability to delete its little used pre-installed apps. About time, guys. Although you can't get rid of everything things like the App Store, Clock, Messages and Safari will (rightfully) always remain, much of the unwanted filler can finally be given the boot.
Don't use Apple News? Gone. Never used the Compass? Laters. Still can't fathom why Stocks is there in the first place? Seeya. That's not where it ends, either. Tips, Podcasts, Find Friends and the Apple Watch app are now all on the possible hit list too. All you have to do is give a long press on any app icon and then tap away at the tiny "x" of the apps you want to kill off.
7. SHARE NOTES FOR COLLABORATIVE ADD-ONS
With iOS 10, Apple's speeding up clunky old processes. Siri is making it easier to send messages, 3D Touch is making it quicker to find certain app features, and Notes now let you play nice with other to bash out work projects on the fly.
One you've started a Note, hitting the new share icon (it looks like a head with a plus symbol) lets you invite people in to work on the doc simultaneously. You can send the invite via all the usual channels and then kick back as your colleagues do all the work for you.
8. ENJOY SPLIT-SCREEN BROWSING ON iPAD
All these iOS 10 updates aren't just about giving your iPhone a new lease of life, y'know. There's a number of iPad-exclusive improvements to give your slate a second wind too. Chief amongst these is the new split-screen Safari skill, letting you make the most of your slate's on-screen real estate and view two web pages side-by-side.
Perfect for comparing items on your latest online shopping spree or simply multi-tasking your online browsing habits, you can set two browser windows up side-by-side simply by long pressing on a browser tab and dragging it into the corner of your iPhone. Want to go back to full-screen browsing? Just tap that little "x" and watch things return to normal.
9. SEND YOUR HEARTBEAT IN A TEXT
Whether as a cry for medical help or a cutesy "This is how much I love you" sign of affection, you can now send your heartbeat using Messages. OK, so it's not your actual heartbeat, but bae will get the idea from the pulsing Digital Touch graphic. To send, in Messages, tap the heart symbol and hold two fingers on the screen.
Not taken with the gimmicky nature of sending your beating heart? Don't worry, Digital Touch also lets you send your own drawings cue endless penis sketches that will emerge in intimate real-time drawing detail on the recipient's own iOS equipped device.
10. UNLOCK YOUR PHONE WITHOUT PRESSING A BUTTON
If your iPhone or iPad has a security-boosting Touch ID fingerprint scanner (so iPhone 6S or iPad Pro), you might have noticed that you now actually have to press the sodding button to unlock your device rather than simply resting your finger on it gaww, what a chore. Things don't need to be this way though. Apple clearly realised we don't all have those fractions of seconds to spare, but wanted us to work for our easy unlocks.
To restore press-free unlocks, you need to head to Settings > General > Accessibility > Home Button > Rest Finger to Open and flick that switch to the on position. Now you'll be able to lazily caress your finger across the home button to bring your device to life, just like the good ol' days of iOS 9.
11. TURN YOUR PHONE INTO A MAGNIFYING GLASS
You're getting older, it's fine, it happens to the best of us. There's no need to suffer in silence though. Instead you can use iOS 10's hidden skills to transform your iPhone into a magnifying glass. How? Well it's all pretty easy.
Assuming your ailing eyes still let you read what's on the screen, all you need to do is go Settings > General > Accessibility > Magnifier and tap the slider across to the on position. Now, whenever you're in the camera app, giving a quick triple tap of your phone's home button will make use of the snapper's zoom, bringing you closer to whatever you're looking at or trying to read. Although making things bigger from the off, there's even a handy slider to let you get as close to the action as you need.
12. COMPETE AGAINST YOUR MATES FOR FITNESS BRAGGING RIGHTS
You know you're a better type of human than your mate, but they're just having none of it. It's time to prove your superior standing then in the best way competitive fitness stats. Thanks to iOS 10, you can now share your Activity efforts and compete against friends in your own custom leaderboards. Although Apple claims the feature is all about supporting each other and cheering your buddies on to new goals (yeah right), we all know it's really about getting one up on your mates by beating their 10K PB without even training.
To set up your own league tables, you'll need to open the Activity app and hit the new "Sharing" button in the bottom right corner. Here, once signed in, you'll be able to invite friends into your grudge match fold using the plus marker in the upper corner. Once added, you'll be able to compare stats with "I'm better than you" glee. Let the battles commence.
13. ALTER THE BRIGHTNESS OF YOUR TOUCH
Being able to turn your smartphone into a makeshift touch at the touch of a button has long been a lifesaver. Sometimes you need a bit of added illumination without giving Blackpool's Christmas lights a run for their neighbour-blinding brightness though. That's where this handy new iOS 10 trick comes in.
Now, giving a firm 3D press (that means iPhone 6S or iPhone 7 only) on the Torch icon in Control Centre will provide you with a trio of intensity options. Whether Low Light, Medium Light or Bright Light are best suited to your current needs, it's now just a press away.
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