11 tricks to get more out of iOS 11
The latest version of Apple's mobile operating system is now live and rolling out to devices across the world, so to give you a head start on the ins and outs of the new software, here are 11 tricks to try as soon as you've got iOS 11 up and running on your iPhone or iPad.
1. Let contacts know when you're driving
The Do Not Disturb mode isn't new in iOS 11, but what is new this time around is that it'll enable itself automatically when it detects you're driving, as well as sending replies to people who text you while you're on the road. To configure how the feature works, and to specify what's in your auto-reply texts, open the iOS Settings then tap Do Not Disturb.
2. Walk around cities in augmented reality
Apple has made much of the augmented reality capabilities of iOS 11, though for now most of the apps taking advantage of it are quick, gimmicky demos. One fun trick you can do without any extra apps is walk around a city without leaving your home. In Maps, search for a city with a Flyover option on its info card, then tap Flyover and move your phone around the room.
3. Type out your requests to Siri
Shouting out voice commands to Siri isn't always practical – if you're in bed or in the library, for example – but iOS 11 lets you type out your requests instead (just make sure your phone is muted or Siri will talk back). From Settings, tap General, Accessibility, Siri, and then Type to Siri. The next time you launch Siri, you can type rather than speak.
4. Tweak the Control Center
iOS 11 features a revamped and redesigned Control Center, as you'll see if you swipe up from the bottom of the screen. You can now fit more settings and toggle switches on there, and customize it to show the options you use the most – from the Settings app, tap Control Center and then Customize Controls to set what's included on the panel and what isn't.
5. Set up your Apple Music profile
If you're a paid-up member of the Apple Music club, iOS 11 lets you set up a profile page for yourself, which you can use to share your taste in music with your friends. To do this, open the For You tab in the app then tap your avatar, then select Start Sharing with Friends and finally Get Started. The app then guides you through the process of setting up your profile.
6. Free up space on your iPhone or iPad
Apple now makes suggestions about how you can free up space on your device – to find these options, and enable them if you like the sound of them, head to Settings then tap General and iPhone Storage. Not all of these options are new in iOS 11, but the page has been revamped, and there are some extra space-saving tweaks under the hood, too.
7. Enable one-handed mode on the keyboard
To make it easier to use your large-screen iPhone, Apple has added a one-handed mode to the portrait keyboard. To use it, just tap and hold on the emoji button on the keyboard (bottom right), then choose either the left or right one-handed mode. Once you're ready to resume normal typing with two hands, repeat the process and select the usual keyboard.
8. Annotate your screenshots
Screenshotting is much improved in iOS 11. Take a screenshot as normal (Home and Sleep/Wake, or Volume Up and Sleep/Wake on the iPhone X), and a small thumbnail appears in the corner. You can ignore this and it disappears, but if you tap it you can add various scribbles and text overlays to the screengrab before you save it to your device.
9. Turn your Live Photos into looping clips
iOS 11 borrows a few ideas from Instagram and Snapchat by allowing you to turn your Live Photos (those briefly animated pictures possible in the iPhone 6S and newer models) into short clips that bounce back and forth, loop around, or look like a long exposure image. From the Photos app, pick an Live Photo, then swipe up to see the extra effects on offer.
10. Scan in documents
New in the Notes app in iOS 11 is the ability to scan in documents and digitize all that paper you've got floating around your office (or home office). From Notes, tap the new note button, then the plus button, then Scan Documents. iOS will help you frame the document in your phone's camera view, and it's then scanned in and saved as a note.
11. Build your dock on an iPad
iPad owners get a few exclusive new tricks in iOS 11, including the addition of a macOS-style dock. Get to it with a quick swipe from the bottom of the screen. You can add apps to the dock simply dragging them down from the home screen grid (drag them out again to remove them), and your recently used apps are also shown over on the right.