There’s a good chance that you have iOS 13 or iPadOS installed on your devices. The software update has been around for a while. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some hidden gems that many users may not be aware of.
iOS 13 was packed with new features, which means that some of its capabilities likely got lost in the mix. To help you take advantage of the update, continue reading to learn about 12 things you can do in iOS 13 that you couldn’t before.
Get to Wi-Fi & Bluetooth Quicker
Say you want to switch to another Wi-Fi network or disconnect from a Bluetooth speaker. In the past, you needed to delve into the Settings app to get to the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth menus. A bit inconvenient, for sure.
In iOS 13, you can access these menus much more quickly and efficiently. Just open the Control Center on your iPhone, and long press on the Connectivity menu. From there, long press on either Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to quickly bring up a new connection menu.
Type by Swiping
The native iOS keyboard is probably your best choice when it comes to typing on iPhone or iPad. But it’s always lacked one key feature of third-party keyboards: swipe-to-text functionality.
That’s no longer the case in iOS 13. You can now swipe your finger across the keys to quickly type out words and phrases anywhere in iOS. The predictive text element of it is top-notch too, so you don’t need to worry about accuracy.
Sign In with Apple
Using a social media site or other service, like Facebook or Google, to sign into new accounts is convenient. But, on the flip side, it’s also a potential privacy risk since it means those services can now access each other’s data.
In response, Apple has debuted a new Sign In with Apple feature that uses disposable, private email addresses which forward to your Apple account. Apple won’t reveal any of your personal data, and you can easily delete those logins or randomized emails with a few taps.
Squeeze More Life out of Your Battery
Battery life has always been a top priority among iPhone users. And now, in addition to Low Power Mode, Apple has added a new feature that should help your battery last longer over time.
It’s called Optimized Battery Charging and it works by analyzing your nightly or daily charging habits to ensure that your battery stays an an optimal charge rate for long periods of time.
Find Devices (Even Offline Ones)
Apple has combined Find My iPhone and Find My Friends into a single Find My app in iOS 13. But it’s not just a cosmetic change. The new Find My app has some clever capabilities that weren’t available before.
The most notable is the ability to locate devices even if they’re not connected to the internet. Apple does this by bouncing Bluetooth signals off of other Apple devices in the area. And don’t work, it does this while protecting your privacy and security too.
Get More from Apple Maps
Apple Maps is no longer the disaster it was early in its history. These days, Apple Maps is a capable contender for the best navigation app on iOS. And it’s learned a few new tricks in iOS 13.
That includes a new Look Around mode that mimics Google’s famous Street View. You can also set locations in Apple Maps as favorites and add them to collections for easy curation.
Connect to Generic Storage
Apple has been steadily improving local storage management since the introduction of the Files app in iOS 11. And in iOS 13, there are some handy new features that users can take advantage of both on iPhone and iPad.
That includes the ability to download content directly to Files from Safari. Users can now also connect to generic media such as a USB flash drive or an external SSD. Need to send a large folder? You can now compress and uncompress files right in the Files app.
Switch Between Light and Dark
The flagship feature of iOS 13 is undoubtedly Dark Mode. Now, you don’t have to settle for the typical light UI design on your iPhone. Just pop over to the Control Center and switch on Dark Mode for a systemwide switch to the dark side.
Dark Mode changes pretty much every facet of iOS, making it a good choice for nighttime reading. Better yet, most third-party apps are compatible with Dark Mode these days and will automatically switch according to your current setting.
Edit Text Easier
Editing text on iPhones has always been a bit wonky. But Apple has improved the text selection in iOS 13 with new gesture-based controls.
You can copy text with a three-finger, pinch-in motion, and paste it with a three-finger pinch-out motion, for example. You can also just drag the text cursor anywhere you want it, as well as undo and redo typing with a forward or back gesture.
Get More from Reminders
Apple has completely overhauled the Reminders app to be much nimrod capable and feature-rich in iOS 13. Even if you’re using another task or checklist app, Reminders is certainly worth a revisit in the new update.
That’s because of much-needed features like natural language parsing, quick-type task creation and the ability to create hierarchical lists. You can also tag your contacts in individual Reminders, which notifies you of pending reminders the next time you’re texting them in Messages.
Connect a Mouse to Your iPhone or iPad
Apple also quietly added the ability to connect a mouse to your iPad (or iPhone) in iOS and iPadOS 13. While it isn’t straight-out mouse support, it does allow users to connect and take advantage of Bluetooth or Wired mice on their devices.
Technically, it’s an Accessibility feature and you’ll find it in Settings > Accessibility > AssistiveTouch. Once you connect it, you’ll see a fairly large cursor that mimics a human finger. It isn’t a perfect mouse integration, but it's there.
View & Edit Photos Better
The Photos app also received a major update in iOS 13. For one, it sports a new interface that makes browsing your favorite images and videos a breeze (while simultaneously filtering out duplicate photos and screenshots automatically).
There are also new editing options in the Photos app, which means you can tailor your images with a new suite of tap-and-drag gestures. Better yet, those editing tools can now be used to tweak videos — something that wasn’t possible before.