Apple released iOS 7 to the public this week, providing a new design and a handful of cool features to iPhone and iPad lovers everywhere. While there are many visible changes, some of the best stuff lurks beneath the surface. Apple failed to advertise quite a few awesome features. These are our top 10.
10. Teach Siri To Pronounce Names Better
Siri doesn’t always get names right, especially if they’re not in her native tongue. If you want to change the way Siri handles a particular name, tell it to her and then say: “you didn’t pronounce that correctly”. This will initiate a series of questions to help her get it right.
9. Siri Can Handle Your Calls
In addition to her (or now his, if you prefer) new voice, Siri can manage your call log for you. Need to listen to a voicemail? Just ask. Want to call back whoever just rang and you missed? Siri can handle that, too. Just make the request and she (or he) will take care of the rest.
8. You Can Change Your AirDrop Visibility
AirDrop makes it very easy to share files with other iOS 7 users in your vicinity, but perhaps you don’t want everyone knowing you’re ready and willing. If you want to place restrictions on who can send you files, bring up Control Center and click on the AirDrop section towards the bottom left. You can decide if everyone, no one, or only contacts can see you.
7. Night Mode For Maps Avoids Blinding You While Driving
Sometimes you don’t want a bright white screen in your face, like when you’re driving somewhere at night. Apple’s Maps app automatically adjusts based on the time and provides you with a darker interface so you don’t blind yourself while driving. Note: there’s no way to disable this.
6. The Compass App Includes A Spirit Level
Got a few crooked picture frames? The built-in Compass app now has a secret second page with a spirit level. Just line it up against the wall until you get a balanced zero degrees and then you’ll know you’re hanging things straight.
5. Messages Provides Time Stamps
Ever need to know when a specific message arrived? You can now find out by checking its timestamp in the Messages app. Just swipe over from the right side of any conversation and you’ll see when each message came in.
4. iPhones Automatically Join Trusted Free Wi-Fi Hotspots
iOS 7 makes joining free, trusted Wi-Fi hotspots much easier because you don’t have to do anything at all; the connection happens automatically.
3. Mail Can Mark All Messages As Read
Remember how you used to have to exploit an iOS bug to mark all your emails as read? Now you don’t! You can simply tap the “Mark All” text at the bottom of your mail list and tell iOS 7 what you want.
2. You Can Make Audio-Only FaceTime Calls
You don’t have to make a call with just your face. If you want to reach another iOS or OS X user on a slow connection, or you just look like crap and don’t want anyone to see you, then you can ring them via FaceTime. Simply initiate the call the same way you would with video but click the phone icon instead.
1. You Can Block Calls and Messages
iOS’ lack of a call blocking feature has been a major omission, so we’re glad to see it finally remedied.If you want to block someone from calling your or sending you a message, hop into Settings -> Phone and/or Settings -> Messages and find the Blocked section toward the bottom. Tap it and add any people you don’t want. You can always remove them if you change your mind.