iOS 16 is full of new features. Here are 16, minor or major, more or less useful, that could make your life easier.
After months of previews and betas, iOS 16 is finally here for all compatible iPhones. Once installed, you’ll want to know all about the new features. Here are 16 of our favorites, some minor and some bigger, that can make a real difference.
The lock screen has been greatly revamped with iOS 16. You can now add widgets on it. And you can save multiple lock screen layouts and switch between them easily. To do this, press and hold on the lock screen, choose Personalize.
2 – Change the display of notifications on the lock screen
Still on the lock screen, you now have more control over the display of notifications. In Settings, tap on Notifications and choose from the three modes. The Account option is the most minimalist, it only displays the number of unread notifications. Stack groups alerts by app and List is the label for how previous versions of iOS worked.
3 – Modify and cancel the sending of messages
Another important feature is the ability to edit messages sent via iMessages in the Messages app (up to five edits per message) or unsend (you have 2 minutes to do this). To edit a sent message or to delete it, tap and hold a message and you’ll see the Edit and Unsend options. Non-iOS 16 recipients will still see your original message, but they will receive the new message.
4 – View recently deleted messages
iOS 16 also introduced the ability to redisplay conversations that were deleted within the last 30 days via the Messages app. It works much like the Trash folder on Mac, giving you extra security before permanently deleting messages. Open the Messages app, tap the Edit button, choose Show recently deleted messages. There you can restore a conversation or delete them permanently.
5 – Define filters in Focus mode
Focus has been improved in iOS 16, including the ability to filter certain apps – including Messages, Mail and Calendar – from being disturbed. When creating rules via Concentration in Settings, you can tap Add Filter; you can easily exclude certain email accounts in the Mail app or limit the number of calendars shown in the Calendar app.
6 – Plan the sending of emails
Like Messages, Mail now has an undo send feature (up to 30 seconds after sending) and you can schedule sends too. When finished writing, tap and hold the blue arrow icon in the upper right corner, you will then see several options. Tap Send Later to schedule the send.
7 – Lock iPhone
iOS 16 offers a lock mode that Apple describes as an “extreme optional protection” measure. Most users will never need it, it drastically limits the attack surface for hackers, while limiting certain iOS features – incoming FaceTime calls and Messages attachments are blocked, for example. You can access it through Settings by tapping on Privacy & Security then Lock Mode.
8 – Share tab groups in Safari
It can be useful from time to time. You can now share tab groups with others through Safari on iOS. Convenient if you work with several people on a project, for example. When a tab group is open, tap the Share button (top right) to choose the recipient contact(s). Tab groups can now include pinned tabs and have their own start page.
9 – View battery percentage
The visualization of the remaining battery percentage is back. To see it in the battery icon in the status bar, go to Settings then Battery and activate Battery percentage. If you don’t have the option, make sure you have iOS 16.1 installed.
10 – Plan routes with multiple stops in Apple Maps
Google Maps has allowed it for years and now iOS 16 does too. Set a start and end location and you’ll see a new Add stop button. You can have up to 15 stops on a route and you can change the order by dragging and dropping on the right side of the screen.
11 – Track your physical activity without Apple Watch
You no longer need an Apple Watch to track your workouts through the Apple Fitness app. Without the watch, the system uses the iPhone’s sensors to count steps, distances, etc. It even works with some third-party sports apps. Although the functionality is not as complete as with an Apple Watch, you can still calculate calories burned.
12 – Carry out a security check
Safety Check is Apple’s new feature for those who find themselves in a “domestic violence situation”. It offers a quick view of people and apps connected to your account, allowing you to revoke permissions like access to your location. If you need to activate it, go to Settings, then Privacy and Security and Security Control.
13 – Cut the subjects of the photos
One of the best features of iOS 16, available in multiple apps including Photos and Safari. It allows you to remove the subject from its background in an image; with an image open onscreen, tap and hold the subject. If iOS can easily identify its outlines, you’ll see a bright white outline appear. You can then use the cut topic by tapping on the Copy or Share option.
14 – Monitor medication intake
The Apple Health app already allows you to track a number of vital signs, but with the arrival of iOS 16, you can track medications too. You have to enter everything manually, but it’s a handy option to make sure you take them regularly. In the Health app, tap Browse, Treatments, then Add Treatment. Fill in the requested details, including name and frequency and you’re done.
15 – Add haptic feedback to the keyboard
With iOS 16, haptic feedback comes to the iPhone keyboard for the first time, giving you vibrations with every keystroke. To enable this feature, open Settings then go to Sounds and Touch and Keyboard Feedback. Then activate Touch.
16 – Share photos more easily
At the time of this writing, the feature is still declared as “coming soon”. Apple says it will be before the end of the year, but the feature called iCloud Shared Photo Library will soon be available to everyone, making it easier to share photos and videos with a group (like a family). Anyone who has access to this library will be able to view, edit or delete the photos and videos you post.