From app tracking transparency to Live Text functionality, your iPhone offers more features than you can memorize. So that you can get the most out of iOS 15, we have put together a guide with seven tips and tricks for your Apple cell phone.
Among the suggestions, you’ll find more UI customization options, life hacks, and pro features that have been added to Apple’s software in recent years. Keep in mind that the latest version iOS 16 is still in beta stage. The new functions in the upcoming operating system include, above all, the customizable lock screens, optimization of notifications, voice input systems and new security options.
And let’s get started with our seven pro tips for iOS.
Table of Contents:
- Create your own icons
- Turns your iPhone keyboard into a trackpad
- Add invisible button on the back
- Enable picture-in-picture mode on YouTube
- Use drag and drop
- Mirror iPhone display on a TV
- Use cinema mode and photographic styles
Create your own icons
iOS isn’t exactly the most customized user interface in the wide world of smartphones. However, over the past few generations, it has become increasingly customizable, much to the chagrin of many fans.
If you like original user interfaces, you can use the Shortcuts app to easily redesign the application icons on the iPhone home screen. You can create unique color combinations and make other settings. Of course, you can use a third-party app to do this, but the Shortcuts tool offers a number of options that conform to Apple’s picky design guidelines. In addition, they can be used to automate routines in iOS and other shortcuts.
- Open the Shortcuts app, tap the plus icon and search for “Open App.
- Tap on “App” in the “Open App” dialog and select the app for which you want to create a new icon.
- Then tap on the blue settings icon in the top right and select “Add to home screen”
- If you now tap on the app icon, you can select or take a photo
Turns your iPhone keyboard into a trackpad
Of all the iOS tips, scrolling the iPhone keyboard is by far the most useful lifehack that I use almost every day. It’s actually a very simple trick, but many iOS users don’t know it, and it may be even more unknown than the flashlight dimming feature.
To quickly place the cursor on the standard Apple keyboard in a strategic position, simply long-press the spacebar and wait for the letters to disappear. After that, without taking your finger off the screen, you can move the cursor as you like and edit text “like a pro”!
Check out our full guide on how to turn your phone’s keyboard into a trackpad.
Add invisible button on the back
Ok, this tip is as old as enabling dark mode on iPhone, but it’s still largely ignored by most people. The Back Tap feature not only offers the ability to take screenshots, but also a wealth of functions and shortcut keys that can be activated by double or triple tapping the back of the iPhone.
The sensational thing about this function is that it supports models from the iPhone 8 upwards. It is not only an important tool for accessibility, but also acts as a shortcut to important functions such as the camera or – in my case – music recognition via Shazam.
To activate the “Tap on Back” feature on your iPhone, proceed as follows:
- goes to “settings” > “Accessibility” > “Tap” and choose here “Tap on back“.
- Taps double tap or triple tap and then choose an action.
- Finished! To trigger the action, simply double or triple tap the back of your iPhone.
Enable picture-in-picture mode on YouTube
Since iOS 15, Apple has provided an advanced option to watch YouTube in a floating window. Known as Picture-in-Picture (PiP), the feature allows YouTube videos to be minimized on the iPhone screen. However, enabling YouTube’s picture-in-picture mode on iPhone requires a premium subscription to Google’s streaming application.
If you’re like me, you’re also a YouTube Premium subscriber. First you have to register as a test user, then the function is automatically available on your iPhone. If you don’t want to spend money on YouTube, our tip is to download the PiPifier app straight from the App Store.
In this guide, we will show you step-by-step how to activate picture-in-picture mode on YouTube.
Use drag and drop
Apple’s universal control hasn’t arrived on the iPhone yet — but that doesn’t mean you can’t drag and drop text, files, and photos between apps on the system. This isn’t exactly a popular iOS feature, but it’s actually really useful. Check out how easy it is to move text from the Notes app to the body of the email in this guide.
However, the most interesting aspect of this feature only came with iOS 16 and the Detach Subject from Background option. Using drag-and-drop, we can isolate a specific object in an image, for example by removing the background or even text passages.
Apps that you can use to remove the background from pictures include Photos, Quick Look, and Safari. At the moment we can only use the feature on iPhones running the iOS 16 beta version. But the feature will soon be available for all iPhones compatible with Apple’s new operating system.
Mirror iPhone display on a TV
Streaming iPhone screen content to TV is possible via AirPlay function. Similar to Miracast, you can use this feature to mirror your iPhone’s screen to compatible TVs or connect it to the Apple TV streaming device. To do this, you must activate the shortcut for AirPlay in the iPhone control panel and follow the steps below:
- open this control center.
- Tap the Screen Sync icon“.
- Select your Apple TV, an AirPlay 2 compatible Smart TV or your Mac from the list. (If you see an AirPlay passcode on your TV or Mac screen, enter the passcode on your iOS device).
- To stop mirroring your iOS device, open this control centertap “Screen Sync” and then on “stop mirroring“.
An important note at this point: the list of TVs compatible with AirPlay 2 is still small and includes models released in 2018 by manufacturers LG, Samsung, Sony, TCL and Vizio. The updated list can be viewed on Apple’s website and also includes some devices running Amazon Fire TV and Roku systems.
With both AirPlay and Miracast, it should be noted that some applications can prevent the transmission of content to the TV, either for technical reasons or due to certification requirements. You can find more information on this topic in this guide to connecting your iPhone to your TV.
Use cinema mode and photographic styles
Last but not least, Apple offers cinema mode and photographic styles from the iPhone 13 series. Since both functions are hardware dependent, only owners of the iPhone 13 models can take full advantage of it.
In our special article on tips for cinematic mode, we show you how the video function works and what options there are for editing the material during and after recording. If you have a compatible device, you can learn how to record videos with a blurred background and how to automatically change the object or person in the foreground of a recording.
As for photographic styles, the latest generation of Apple’s smartphone camera lets you make the same Hue, Temperature and Saturation changes as traditional filters, but takes advantage of the iPhone hardware to get a different result than previous methods achieve. In the following you will learn how to use the photo styles on the iPhone optimally.
These are our seven pro tips for anyone using an iPhone in 2022. Do you have any other tips and tricks for us? Then let us know in the comments! In a future version of this article, we’ll include the best picks from the comments.