16 iOS 9 Features That’ll Make Your Life Easier
iOS 9 is finally here, and it comes with a raft of new features.
But are you getting the most out of Apple’s latest mobile OS? Here are 16 features that are guaranteed to improve your iPhone experience and make your life easier at the same time!
Customise your reading experience in Safari
Safari’s reader view is a brilliant way to read articles, removing all the ads and distractions (*coughSidebarofShamecough*) that make reading difficult.
With iOS 9, you can change the appearance of Reader for maximum comfort. Just tap the Reader icon and then tap the font icon to customise the background colour, font, font size and much more.
Browse uninterrupted with Wi-Fi Assist
Poor Wi-Fi is almost as bad as no Wi-Fi, which is presumably why Apple has introduced Wi-Fi assist. With this feature enabled (which it should be, if you haven’t messed around with your settings), your iPhone will automatically switch to mobile data if your Wi-Fi signal is weak so you can browse uninterrupted.
Be careful if you’re on a limited data plan, though, as you can end up unwittingly gobbling up megabytes streaming or downloading. This feature is best used with an unlimited data plan!
Cross-reference unknown numbers with your email inbox
This one might seem a little bit creepy, but it’s incredibly useful. Whenever you get a call from an unknown number, iOS 9 will cross-reference it with your email inbox to try and identify the caller (if they have their number in their email signature for example). If it gets a positive ID, the caller’s name will appear when they try to call you again.
Keep all of your beautiful selfies in one place
Good news, selfie connoisseurs. The Photos app now keeps all of your front-facing camera shots in a ‘Selfies’ folder, where you can admire your good self without all those annoying pictures of other people and stuff getting in your way.
Hit the back button to switch between apps
It’s so small that you could miss it, but it’s a feature iOS users have been demanding for years.
When you click a link from an app, the page you navigate to will have a small ‘Back to’ button in the top left corner. Hit that button to go back to the app you were using before!
Search your settings (rather than navigating through menus!)
The days of endlessly navigating through settings menus to find an obscure feature are over! With iOS 9, all you need to do is pull down on the screen to reveal the ‘search settings’ bar and type whatever it is you’re looking for. So simple, yet so useful.
Switch between caps and lower case with the magical shifting keyboard
Unbelievably, it’s taken until iOS 9 for Apple to implement a keyboard that shifts between lower and upper case when you press the shift key. They’ve sorted it now – and about time too.
Pay instantly with the handy Apple Pay Shortcut
Double tap the home button when your phone is locked and Apple Pay will pop up. Pay for your stuff and leave. Who said shopping was difficult?
Make your friends think you’re a maths genius with the hidden calculator
Pull down on the home screen, tap the search bar and enter a sum. It’s a quick shortcut to the calculator, in all honesty, but it’s useful for those situations where you need a quick answer.
Select lots of photos with a single swipe
Just press down on the first photo you want to select and drag your finger to pick subsequent photos. Simple.
Resume listening by plugging in your headphones
When you plug in your headphones, iOS 9 will bring up the music app you were most recently using. Just tap it to start playing again!
In some instances, iOS 9 will use various factors like location and time to choose the appropriate music app for you. So, if you go to the gym at a certain time and always use a certain music app, iOS will probably bring up that app.
Group your notifications by app
If you use a certain app more than others, then we have great news: you can now group your notifications by app rather than time. You can even sort your apps so that certain notifications appear before others! Just go to Settings > Notifications > Group by App.
Hide your most embarrassing images from prying eyes
We all have photos we’d rather people didn’t see, whether it’s a slightly embarrassing drunk selfie or something rather more *ahem* intimate.
With iOS 9, you can hide these photos from your camera roll by selecting a photo, tapping the more options icon and then tapping the ‘Hide’ button. You can still access them through your folders, however.
Save your battery with manual low power mode
The new low power mode is a lifesaver when you’ve got low battery, but it’s pretty useful if you’re trying to conserve power during the day too (if you’re heading out after work and won’t get to charge until bedtime, for example). To turn it on, go to Settings > Battery > Low power mode.
Manage your files with the iCloud Drive app
iOS 9 has introduced a handy iCloud Drive app which lets you access all of the files you’ve saved to iCloud instantly – but you can only use it if you activate it in settings. Simply go to Settings > iCloud Drive > Show on Home Screen.
Leave FaceTime messages
Someone not answering your FaceTime calls? You can now leave them a message. Exercise caution if someone decides to leave you a message, though; we can see this particular feature being abused in numerous creative and hilarious ways…
Have you discovered a handy feature in iOS 9? Let us know in the comments!
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