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iOS 14 tips and tricks: how to make the most of Apple’s latest iPhone software

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It has been more than half a year since iOS14 was launched. The iPhone 12 and Apple’s new operating systems were launched in September 2020. Apple has been hard at work fixing iOS 14 bugs and adding more features.

It’s possible that you need to refresh your knowledge about how to use the original iOS 14 features such as picture-in-picture and the App Library. Perhaps you are more interested in the new iOS14.5 features such as Siri voices and the ability to block apps tracking you.

No matter what your reason, we have iOS 14 tips to help you get more out of your iPhone. You can also get more from our 62 essential iPhone tips.

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1. Add one or two widgets

iPhone widgets existed technically in the past. However, iOS 14 moved them to the main screen of your phone, where they can live alongside other apps.

Tap and hold the empty space on your home screen to add an iPhone widget. The top-left corner of your screen will show a + icon. Your apps will begin to move. A list of widgets available for all the apps that you have currently downloaded will appear.

You can choose an app to see the different widget sizes. The larger the widget is, the more information you will see without opening it, but it will take up more space on your home screen.

The Smart Stack widget is our first tip. You can swipe up and down between different widget screens, such as Weather, Calendars, News, Gmail, Music, and News. It is quick and easy to get reminders and process information.

If you are someone who meticulously organizes apps, swipe right to an empty screen before adding a widget. Apple will automatically insert it and move your app icons to another page, creating a cascade effect.

These are just a few examples of widgets that you might use in your day to help you make informed decisions. For people who have synced accessories such as the Apple Watch 6 and AirPods it is great because it displays their battery levels. Apple Shortcuts allows you to trigger your favorite apps without needing Siri or the app. We love the way that Google Photos and Photos automatically show slideshows of older photos.

2. You can hide your useless home screens by checking out the App Library

Are you trying to find the iPhone App Library on your Home screen? Just swipe from the top to the left through your Home screens. You’ll eventually find a series auto-generated folders that include categories such as ‘Recently added’ and ‘Utilities.

To open an app, tap the larger icon or tap a smaller number of icons to display all apps in that category.

To see an A-to Z list of all installed apps, tap on the search bar for ‘App Library’. Tap and drag any app icon from this view or the main view to take you to your rightmost screen. Here you can drop the app to make it easier to find outside the Library.

You don’t have to display every app on your home screen now that you have the App library. You probably have multiple screens of apps that you don’t use often, which can take up space that could be used for widgets.

To reduce your app collection and clear up your home screens , we recommend hiding these cluttered screens to save your time.

To enter “jiggle mode”, long press your home screen. Next, tap the dots above the dock to see how many screens are present. Tap the checkmarks to remove superfluous screens, and then click ‘Done to return to Home.

3. Apple’s new Translate app is now available.

Apple’s Translate app, which offers offline (or on-device) translation for 11 languages, is a useful addition. It is useful for travelers who disable cellular data or put their iPhones into Airplane Mode to avoid roaming fees.

You can download any language that you need via Wi-Fi before you go.

Once you’re ready to speak with someone, open the app and tap the Microphone button. The app will identify the language they are speaking and translate it for you. The app will then translate the translation for you.

To see the written translation, you can also manually enter words into the app.

Apple has added translation capabilities to Safari. However, they are still in beta and restricted to certain languages. To view a website in another language, click the ‘AA” button in the browser bar. If a translation is available you will see the option to ‘Translate into English’. If not, Safari cannot translate it.

4. Use the picture-in-picture mode

The best iOS 14 update was the addition to picture-in-picture mode (PiP), which has been available on iPads since years. Now you can see tiny FaceTime calls, Netflix videos or Apple Podcast windows right from your home screen.

Although it is quite simple, we have an iOS PiP how to guide. To return to your home screen, swipe up from the bottom of any compatible app or video you are playing. As you scroll through other apps, the video preview will be displayed.

To make the video bigger, pinch or spread your fingers. You can also swipe the video off of the screen to hide the audio, tap the button to display video controls, or double-tap the icon to resize it automatically.

YouTube is the only video app that does not support PiP by default. To unlock this feature, you will need to subscribe to YouTube Premium.

5. Pin your Messages conversations

You may not be aware of the Messages app’s useful tools, such as hiding iPhone message or blocking iPhone message. We love iOS 14’s new messaging tool, which allows you to pin messages from certain people so that they are easier to find.

This will ensure that your boss, family member, or significant other can always see messages on the top of the app. Hold any Messages conversation and press ‘pin’. You will see the conversation as a large icon over the rest of your messages. It uses the picture from your Contacts.

The pinned bubble that you don’t have assigned to a photo will only show their initials. Tap the icon at the top of your message chain and select Info > Info > Edit > Upload Photo.

6. In a group conversation, reply to one person

Apple Messages iOS 14 now offers inline replies. This means you can reply to a specific message within a thread.

Simply press and hold the message you wish to reply to, then tap Reply. The message will open in a new window. You can then reply directly to it, with your response right below. The group chat members will receive the message directly, but they’ll know that it’s not intended for them.

7. Give your Memoji a fresh look

Memojis originally appeared in iOS 12, but were upgraded to iOS 14. Your Memoji can now be the default Contact photo on your friends’ smartphones. Apple also added visual customization options that will make your Memoji more like you.

There are new options for hairstyles and headwear, including religious wraps and helmets. You can also make your Memoji younger or older with three expressive stickers.

Long-time iPhone users are likely to haven’t updated their iPhone avatars in several years. It’s worth rebuilding your Memoji using some of the new customizations.

Tap the third icon to the left that features cartoonish faces. Next, tap the ellipsis symbol. You will be able to edit or create a new Memoji.

After you have updated your Memoji to your liking, it is possible to share your Memoji to your contacts. However, you will need a Mac to do this. Open Messages on Mac. Next, choose Preferences > General > Setup Name and Photo Sharing. You can choose to have your name or Memoji automatically shared with all Messages contacts. Or, Messages will ask you if they want to share them.

8. Apple Maps allows you to plan a cycling trip

You might not have been able to cycle as often since iOS 14 was launched. Apple Maps now has cycling directions for selected cities. These directions not only show you where to go, but also let you search for quieter roads and routes that don’t involve pedestrians.

Apple Maps supports only cycling directions for New York City and Los Angeles, San Francisco. London, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, San Francisco, San Francisco, London, Seattle and Portland. It’s time to get out your ebike and start cycling if you live in any of these locations.

9. Apple Maps Guides can help you plan your next vacation.

Apple Maps Guides is another new feature that many people who are unable to travel may not be aware of. Guides provide a curated list of places and things to do in specific areas. You could find the best restaurants in NYC or the best bars and clubs in London.

Scroll down to view official Maps guides. Click the “+” button to expand the list. You’ll be able to add the destination to ‘My Places’, or create a personal guide. A whole list of places can be collected.

To access your personal Guide, tap the info icon and scroll down to the bottom to locate it. Swipe up to access the full Guide menu, then tap the “+” icon to add more places.

10. Change your default Siri voice

With the iOS 14 initial release, Siri received a makeover. Siri is now a tiny orb at the bottom of the iPhone panel, rather than taking up the entire screen like phone calls.

iOS 14.5, which removed Siri’s default voice , was the more interesting change. Siri used to default to male (or female) in certain countries. But Apple now wants you to choose your preferred voice and not show bias towards one gender.

You won’t be prompted to modify this setting after you have installed iOS 14.5. Go to Settings > Siri & Search> Siri Voice. There are many Siri “varieties” with American, Australian and South African accents. There are four American Siri voices and two British Siri voices.


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