15 iPhone Tips and Tricks for iOS 7 You Need to Know – I've said it before, I love tech toys and gadgets – especially my iPhone and iPad. Recently I've learned a few new and very useful tricks about my iPhone that I didn't know about and with the launch of Apple's new operating system iOS 7 I thought it would be fun to discuss some new things you may not of heard about yet.
iPhone Tip #1: How to change Siri to a man's voice
Looking for a man who hangs on your every word and who can answer all your questions? Well, now you can give Siri a man's voice. Simply go to Settings > General > Siri > Voice Gender.
iPhone Tip #2: How to multitask
Who in this day and age doesn't multitask. I have to say this has always been a pet peeve of mine with the iPhone – I always got so frustrated turning off an app to open another. Now you don't have to, just double click the home button and you'll be able to scroll through all your apps and see the last screen view you had of that app. Another cool aspect of this multitasking feature is that you can close any apps that you don't need in your list just by swiping them up. This is great if you have tons of apps that you don't use that often.
iPhone Tip #3: New built-in ringtones
Seriously, does everyone use the Marimba ringtone? Every time I'm in a store and hear the Marimba I see a dozen people all stop, reach in their purses or pockets and check their phones… its pretty funny actually. iOS 7 has given us a better ringtone selection and some really nice ones – great for using as alarm tones too. You'll find them in the same place as always: Settings > Sounds > Ringtones. Oh and for all you die-hard Marimba folks out there don't despair, you ringtone is still there under the “Classic” ringtone section.
iPhone Tip #4: New dynamic backgrounds
Now I just love these new backgrounds. This is a new kind of wallpaper that brings very subtly designed backgrounds to life with slow and calming animation. These new backgrounds are called “Dynamic Wallpaper”. Currently there are only a handful of designs to choose from but I'm sure Apple has great ideas for future designs. To find dynamic backgrounds open up Settings > Brightness & Wallpaper > Tap on the wallpaper section > Tap on Dynamic > Select you wallpaper.
iPhone Tip #5: New built-in vibrations or create your own
This is a fun new change I never even considered. Now you can change your vibration to one of seven choices or you can create your own custom vibration. To find this go to Settings > Sounds > Ringtones > Vibration (top of page).
iPhone Tip #6: How to block callers
Where was this app last year when I was getting 3 calls a day from the same company trying to sell me something. Now it's easy to block spammers and marketers. To block annoying calls or texts tap on the info circle next to the phone number you want blocked, and then scroll down the page until the very bottom and click on “Block this caller”.
iPhone Tip #7: Zoom while in video mode
Every time I used my video on my iPhone I would try in vain to zoom in but of course this feature didn't exist until now. Finally Apple has listened to us. In video mode you'll see a white slider bar. Just slide you finger across the bar in order to zoom in while you're recording your video… yeah!
iPhone Tip #8: How to turn your iPhone into a flashlight
Having trouble finding your keys in your purse at night? Did the power go out in your house? In one swipe you can turn your iPhone into a flashlight. Open the control center by swiping the screen from the bottom upwards. The first icon on the bottom left is your flashlight – just tap the icon to turn it on and tap again to turn the light off. You'll also notice a few other easy access icons on the bottom of the control center including your timer/alarm/stopwatch/world clock, calculator and your camera.
iPhone Tip #9: Use your compass as a level
Well isn't this a fun little extra. I know I could have used this new feature a few times lately. The iPhone compass got a complete redesign with iOS 7 which also includes this great new level. To use the level open the compass app and then swipe to the right. You'll know you've achieve a perfect level when the circles overlap and/or the screen turns green.
iPhone Tip #10: How to take a screenshot
This isn't anything new but a great tip none the less. I have to admit I just learned this from a cashier at Michael's a few weeks ago (BONUS TIP… this is perfect for their mobile coupons that expire after one use). Simply hold down the power button and the home button (the indented button at the bottom of the phone) at the same time and the screen will flash and the screenshot will be stored in your photo album.
iPhone Tip #11: How to lock iPhone screen orientation
Who doesn't check their iPhone in bed… I know I do. Don't you hate it when you've just gotten all cozy on your side and then the iPhone screen changes orientation and you can't read it without lifting your head up. This is the perfect scenario to use the iPhone lock screen orientation trick. This trick is another oldie but a goodie although now you'll find it in a different spot with the iOS 7 operating system. Swipe your screen from the bottom up and you'll see it on the top right of the control center.
iPhone Tip #12: Multiple pages in apps folders
This isn't really mind-blowing but it's a nice addition all the same. Up until now you could only put 12 apps in any one folder. Now thanks to the multiple page feature whenever you have more than 9 apps in a folder it automatically makes a new page in the same folder. The little dots at the bottom of the open folder tell you if there are multiple pages or not.
iPhone Tip #13: Activation lock
The thing you dreaded most just happened, you lost your phone – what now? Apple has kindly added a great new feature to make your iDevices more secure. Activation lock makes it difficult for anyone else to use or steal your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and protects the device from allowing anyone to turn off your “Find my iPhone” setting, erase or reactivate your device.
iPhone Tip #14: Notes with Siri
I've used the Notes utility on my iPhone right from my very first 3G. It's basic and easy and that's probably why I use it. Now you can use Siri to make your notes for you. Just turn on Siri and say (for example) “Make a note called Grocery List”, Siri will tell me that the note has been made and then I can activate Siri again and say “add cheese, milk, eggs, onions, carrots, and potatoes” and the note will continue. You can get Siri back to the note again any time by saying “add milk to my grocery list note”. Finally, when you're ready to retrieve your grocery list you just need to say to Siri “show me my grocery list note'. How great is that!
iPhone Tip #15: Reminders with Siri
This is definitely one of my favorite tips especially with my horrible memory. You can use Siri to automate and schedule reminders for you. Even more exciting is that you can use Siri for location-based reminders. What does that mean? So let's say that you're dropping you child off at school and you just realized you need to take the chicken out to thaw for dinner. All you need to say to Siri is “remind me to take the chicken out when I get home”. Now, as soon as you get home your iPhone detects your location and you'll receive an alert to take the chicken out to thaw. This all works thanks to the magic of location services (make sure you have it turned on). You're phone automatically sends you the reminder… wow, that one knocks my socks off. One thing to note, you need to have your address listed in your contacts for this to work but don't worry, Siri will prompt you to key it in if it isn't already listed. This works for any location as long as you have the correct address.
BONUS 10 FREE IPHONE WALLPAPER…
Since I updated my iPhone to the new operating system my old wallpaper looked too busy. I created a softer, visually pleasing wallpaper that works well with the iOS 7 theme (see the first photo of this post to see what it looks like with all the icons). I like the aqua/teal color but I knew that wouldn't appeal to everyone so I made it in 4 other colors as well. For those of you who like floral designs I've created a series with swirls and curves too. Click here to download your 10 free iPhone 5 wallpapers.
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