Useful iOS 13 tips and tricks for iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max


Apple’s latest iPhones are among the very best phones you can get right now, bar none. The lineup has matured and while some may find it boring, the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max have more features than ever, offering a pretty versatile experience.

However, as straightforward as they are, iPhones are also home to multiple hidden tips and tricks that you might not know. We’ll try to correct that by highlighting some neat tricks that could help you in everyday life.

#1. Dark Mode is your friend, but know when to use it

Dark Mode is the big new thing in iOS 13, and it's great. Enabling it is easy - either go to your Control Center and long-press the brightnes slider, then hit the leftmost button, or go to Settings > Display & Brightness, then select your appearance. Our advice? Leave it automatic! This way, the phone will remain in regular light mode during the day, and in dark mode during the night. That's the optimal choice, and to learn why check out our detailed guide on the ins and outs of dark mode, spanning from the early inception of the trendy feature to the different use cases. Read it here

#2. Make sense of the cursor control

One of the major gripes anyone has with writing long paragraphs of text on a mobile device is going back to make minor corrections. That clunky cursor is usually such a nuisance to control, especially if you need to mark text, copy, paste, or just correct a single letter in a word.

Apple's cursor control feature — activated either with 3D Touch on the keyboard or by holding the spacebar on non-3D Touch iPhones — kind of alleviated some of those pains. With iOS 13, Cupertino aims to further improve that experience.

So, the touchpad-like keyboard feature is still here. However, you can now also just grab the text cursor with your finger and move it anywhere in a single motion, which is much more fluid, intuitive, and convenient to use. Just grab it and swipe it around text — no snapping to awkward locations, no getting stuck in weird places. The improvement is very welcome! It works the same way for text selections — you just grab the selector handle on either side of your chosen word and drag it wherever you wish with zero resistance from the software.

#3. Slide to type

Android has supported swipe typing... forever, actually, but iOS was pretty late to the party. With iOS 13, you can now swipe to type with the stock keyboard. The feature is enabled by default, but many iOS purists would probably want to turn it off. To do that, go in Settings -> General -> Keyboard. Find the “Slide to Type” toggle near the bottom and flick it to on / off, depending on your preference.

#4. Expanded screenshot

Expanded screenshots are a welcome new feature on iOS, though they are a bit different than the rolling screenshots you'd take on Android. To take a rolling screenshot on iOS, you need to be in Safari. First, take a screenshot by pressing the power and volume up buttons together until the screen flashes, then quickly tap on the screenshot preview in the bottom left. Next up, in the advanced screenshot editor, you'll see the Screen and Full Page buttons near the top bottom bar. If you want a full-page screen shot, tap the respective button; if you want to keep your regular screenshot, stay on "Screen". One thing to have in mind is that expanded screenshots are saved in the PDF file format. 

#5. Have Safari clean up the mess after you

A neat little trick in Safari lets the browser automatically close your browser tabs after a certain amount of time. To do that, head to Settings, then scroll all the down to Safari, and select Close Tabs. You can substitute the default manual setting by choosing to automatically close tabs in one day, one week, and even one month.

#6. Mute unknown callers

Unknown callers are likely one of the main causes of anxiety, and iOS 13 allows you to actually silence such calling parties. To do that, head to Settings > Phone, and flip the Silence unknown callers switch. 

#7. Photos is now a great editing app

Forget all those third-party photo editors, the stock Photos app is now great! It has gained an improved and much better user interface that puts all the essential editing options at your fingertips and makes photo retouching way friendlier. Among the superb new features is Brilliance, which brightens shadows, lowers highlights, and tunes up the contrast ever so slightly to make your image really pop out. The best thing? The Photos app now supports video editing by default now. It's only good for basic edits  as of now, but it's something.

#8. Change video resolution easily

Previously, changing the video resolution of the camera app required you to go to the main settings app, which is terrible user experience. Thankfully, Apple eventually realized that, as iOS 13 allows you to switch video resolutions directly from the camera app. When in video-recording mode, you can tap the top right resolution and framerate icons to switch between 4K/Full HD and 24, 30, or 60fps. It's super handy!

#9. Automation Shortcuts

The Shortcuts app is a masterpiece, and the new personalizable Automation tab is more than excellent. You can now create your own personal automation scenarios with your set of custom actions that rely on geofencing and meeting other customizable criteria. Not only do these run on your iPhone, but they could also apply to your smart home appliances. You can have Shortcuts automatically play random music tracks for you early in the morning or when you connect to your car's Bluetooth, turn off all the lights in your house after you're off for work, and many, many others. 

#10. Delete apps the new way

With the official death of 3D Touch (RIP), Apple sort of changed the way you delete apps. On the iPhone 11 series, you just press and hold on an app's icon until you feel a slight vibration and see the new contextual menu pop up. Just hit Delete App and you're golden.

#11. Share Notes with friends

The refreshed Notes app has a great new feature that you might have already forgotten about - it allows you to share notes with your friends. You can either allow them to just view the note or even edit it as they desire. That's a great feature that might come in mighty handy in certain situations.

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