Become an iPhone super-user

If you’re one of the many iPhone owners in the UK, you probably think you have it pretty figured out. Your apps are all set up and you can whizz through a text like nobody’s business – but are you getting the most out of your iPhone? May be not. There are a few well-hidden features you may not know about – and here are three of them.

iOS control centre

1. Add your most-used shortcuts to the Control Centre

The iPhone’s Control Centre, accessible by either swiping down from the top-right corner on an X-series or just swiping up on an iPhone 8 or older, is a treasure trove of options. By default, it’ll let you turn on the flashlight, adjust volume and brightness, turn on Airplane mode, and more. But did you know you can add even more options? Just go to Settings > Control Centre > Customise Controls and you’ll be able to pick from all sorts of options to add, including Low Power Mode, Screen Recording, Voice Memos and many more. They’ll then be available at the swipe of a finger anytime.

2. Use your camera flash for message notifications

Sometimes you can’t help but be away from your iPhone, even just across the room, but if you’re in a noisy environment there’s no easy way to know if you have notifications. Or is there? By enabling an option called “LED Flash for Alerts”, you can have your iPhone’s flash blink brightly whenever a notification comes in. To enable it, go to Settings > Accessibility > Audio/Visual > LED Flash for Alerts. Then just place your phone screen-down and it’ll flash whenever a notification comes in. Handy!

3. Keep yourself honest with Downtime

Since iOS 12, all iPhones have been able to use a feature called Screen Time, which tracks how much time you spend on your phone and sends you optional reports weekly. As part of the Screen Time feature, Apple has included another useful option called Downtime. By enabling Downtime, you can set a period of time during which you can’t access certain apps on your phone. In this way, you’ll be able to prevent yourself from checking social media when you’re supposed to be working – or at least try! To enable Downtime, just go to Settings > Screen Time > Downtime. Once that’s enabled, you should also confirm which apps will be accessible during Downtime by clicking into Always Allowed.

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