(Or at least make it a lot easier!)
1. Make friends with Siri
Perhaps one of the most under-used and under-appreciated features in recent iPhone models, Siri is essentially a voice-activated personal assistant. Siri was introduced as a feature on the iPhone 4s back in 2011 and has been fine tuned with each iteration since. Siri is most useful when trying to access data on the go (such as ‘read my most recent emails‘) or quick reminders you many not have time to manually type in (such as ‘remind me to put dry cleaning in car when I get home’), the latter will use Location Services in conjunction with your Reminders to issue an alert to you when you reach home (assuming Siri knows your home address, otherwise you will need to specify this)
2. Sleep like a baby
Create your own lullaby playlist and use a combination of the Equalizer (EQ) function and the Clock Timer to control the levels and duration of the music you are listening to while you gently drift off to sleep. The Equalizer Function has a Late Night mode that controls the audio output of songs, essentially ‘toning down’ louder sections of music thus making it more soothing for night-time listening. This feature can be accessed by going to Settings > Music > EQ > Late Night.
If you want to set a time to turn off your music after a certain length of time, then use the Timer feature found under Clock > Timer, set the time to say 15 minutes and then scroll down and select ‘stop playing’. This will stop the music after the specified duration, by which time you will hopefully have been gently delivered to the land of nod!
This can also be a very useful feature with babies or small children, using either music or audiobooks.
3. Make your phone YOUR phone: personalize and customize
Most people use there phones for pretty much the same tasks every day, calling, texting or emailing usually the same 4 or 5 people every time, taking photos, accessing music and creating/ checking calendar events. The iPhone is a very customizable phone but very few people choose to make the few changes required to make their day-to-day life so much easier.
For example, wouldn’t everyone love a personal assistant who fields our calls and only alerts us if the call is from someone we deem important enough to interrupt our well-earned lunch-break? The ‘Do not disturb’ feature allows you to do just that. You can set it to block call alerts between say 1pm and 2pm unless the call is from someone on your ‘favorites’ list. This feature can be customised to your needs and is something everyone should use at least once in a while! To access this feature go to Settings > Do Not Disturb.
You also probably send the same text or email a number of times a week saying something like (or at least containing the phrase) ‘on my way’, ‘where are you?’ or ‘will call you later’. You can add a ‘shorthand’ to these and any phrase you choose using the Keyboard Shortcuts feature. To use this feature you simply define the phrase and the shortcut to that phrase so that when you type for example, ‘wcul’, the auto-correct feature will show ‘will call you later’ allowing you to insert the text without all the laborious typing. Another few minutes saved! To access this feature go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Add New Shortcut.
In many ways we have become slaves to technology but we can take back some of that control by using our iPhones more effectively and making technology work better for us.