10 Best iOS 15 Features, At WWDC 2021, Apple unveiled another version of iOS. iOS 15 expands on the extensive feature set of iOS 14 by providing improved privacy, intuitive functionality, and a more tightly integrated environment. You might have missed some amazing iOS 15 features if you weren’t hooked to the live stream like I was. Don’t worry, I’ve collected a list of all the finest iOS 15 new features, tips, and tricks to help you get the most out of your iPhone.
iOS 15 Tips and Tricks
Before we get started, here’s how to get iOS 15 on your iPhone. It’s compatible with any iPhones released after the iPhone 6s. If you have one of the new iPhone 13 series handsets, it will come pre-installed with iOS 15.
- Open the Settings app on your iPhone
- Swipe down and tap General
- Choose Software Update
- Tap Download
- If iOS 14.8 appears at the top, look at the bottom and choose Upgrade to iOS 15
- Then tap Download and Install
1. FaceTime Friends on Android and Windows
One of the biggest changes in iOS 15 is that Android and Windows users will finally be able to join FaceTime calls.
Simply launch the Facetime app on iOS 15 and look for the new Create Link option at the top. Copy the link to your clipboard and share it with your friends so they can join the Facetime call from their Windows, Android, or Chromebook. Facetime was previously exclusively available on iOS and Mac devices.
However, this doesn’t mean your friends can start a Facetime call from an Android phone or Windows PC. A FaceTime link can only be generated from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac but anyone with the link can join the call. It’s not perfect but it’s a start.
FaceTime now has the option to blur your background using portrait mode, as well as voice isolation and a wide spectrum mode. Facetime, like Zoom, now allows you to arrange calls so that participants can join at the appropriate time.
2. SharePlay – Watch Films together
Update: SharePlay seems not to be working on the iOS 15’s stable version.
With SharePlay in iOS 15, Apple is attempting to bring the famous watch parties capabilities to the iPhone.
Facetime users can utilize SharePlay to watch movies, listen to music, and share their iPhone screens with other Facetime users. This is useful when you want to video chat with your group while watching or listening to music.
Simply make a FaceTime call with a friend to begin utilizing SharePlay (s). Then you may either listen to a song on Apple Music or watch material on the TV app, or pick the Share Screen icon in the right upper corner of a FaceTime chat.
However, as of now, Facetime will support limited apps such as Disney Plus, ESPN Plus, HBO Max, Hulu, MasterClass, Paramount Plus, Pluto TV, TikTok, and Twitch.
Major streaming sites like Disney Plus, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video, are not a part of SharePlay as of now. In fact, they have added watch party features natively in their app this year.
Read also: Best Apps for iPad in Different Categories.
3. Focus Mode – Not just Do Not Disturb
Focus mode, which is essentially a configurable DND section, was added in iOS 15. Moreover, focus mode allows you to decide which alerts get through rather than just silence calls and notifications. Sleep, Work, Personal, and DND are the four modes available.
To activate the focus mode, open the Control Center and pick the mode by long-pressing the focus button. It will be enabled automatically if you’ve built a custom focus mode and set it to trigger at a specific time during the day.
4. Private Relay – Kind of Like a VPN But Not Really
Private Relay is a new feature in iOS 15 that not only encrypts your browser activity but also relays it via two other servers to keep it concealed. Moreover, Private Relay may appear to be a VPN at first appearance, but unlike VPNs, it only operates within the Safari browser and does not allow you to pick between other countries’ servers.
Private Relay isn’t free though. It comes bundled with iCloud+ so if you’ve purchased iCloud storage or have an Apple One subscription then Private Relay would be already active for you. You can check the status by navigating to Settings > Apple ID > iCloud > Private Relay > Turn ON.
Once activated, you would be able to access all blocked sites that have been disabled by your ISP. Plus, it would prevent trackers and websites from gathering your data.
5. Setup Account Recovery
iOS 15 has a new feature called Account recovery, that will help you gain access back to your device, if you lose your device, or forget your password.
To do so, go to the Account Recovery page and add your friend or family member as a trusted contact. Select your Apple ID in the Settings app, then Account Recovery in the Password & Security section. You can then add a new recovery contact from there.
If you lose access to your smartphone in the future, your buddy can go to the same Account Recovery screen in their Settings app, choose your name, and send you the recovery key.
6. Live Text – Copy Text from Images
One of the most powerful updates of iOS 15 is Live Text.
Users can not only extract text, email addresses, phone numbers, and even handwritten writing from photos using Live Text, but they can also copy and paste it anywhere on the iPhone.
Simply press on any text field on your iPhone to use the ‘Live Text’ feature. This brings up a new option called ‘text from the camera.’ When you tap the camera option, a smaller camera window appears, which you may use to point at the text. By dragging your finger across the text, you can pick it and copy it to your clipboard.
Along with that, you would be able to detect objects in a photo such as flowers, books, mountains, etc. It’s going to tremendously help in searching for that image you took three years ago.
7. Hide My Email
Another useful privacy feature Apple has added to iOS 15 is Hide My Email.
Mail, Safari, and iCloud all have to Hide My Email built-in. Users can quickly create fresh email accounts to use as disposable email addresses. If you no longer require that email address in the future, you can swiftly close it and create a new one. This feature stops internet services from sending you spam or contacting you using your genuine email address.
You can find it under Settings > Apple ID > iCloud > Hide my email.
The feature is part of Apple’s new iCloud+ paid service.
8. Use a New Timer Picker Menu
It is one of those hidden iOS 15 tricks that has a big usability impact.
With the ability to select the hours or minutes, many users have found the iOS 14 pickers to be less convenient to use.
Thankfully, in iOS 15, rather than scrolling endlessly through the time picker menu to find a specific time, you can now tap on it and use the number pad on the keyboard to add time.
However, for the time being, this just works for the alarm; for the timer, you’ll have to scroll endlessly.
9. Tags in Notes
Even though I use Notes frequently, I am aware of its shortcomings when compared to alternatives such as Google Keep. With the addition of tags to Notes in iOS 15, it will be much easier to find specific notes, such as recipes, directions, or secret keys, simply searching for hashtags.
Simply include #tag_name in a note, and it will be displayed on the main Notes Screen. The tag can then be tapped to search for any notes that have the tag.
10. Cross-App Drag and Drop
If properly implemented, this will be a powerful iOS 15 feature. You can drag and drop files, images, and text from one app to another with iOS 15.
Simply touch and hold the file or text you want to copy, then drag the file upwards as the pop-up choice appears to enable drag mode. Now, simply swipe to another app and drop the file there with your second finger. It’s quite simple.
What’s Your Favorite iOS 15 Feature
These are some of the coolest new features in iOS 15 that are a welcome addition and provide a better experience. Tags in the Notes app and Safari Extensions are two of my favorite iOS 15 new features. Which option do you prefer? Which iOS 15 feature are you most excited to try? Please notify me via Twitter.
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