Welcome to September, the month Apple launches an all-new iPhone! Until then lets rev up our existing iPhone use a little.
1/ Selectively control Read Receipts for iMessage in iOS 10 — A read receipt in iMessage is simply a feature designed to let your contacts know when you’ve read their message. You can go into Settings to turn this on and off at will, but on iOS 9 and before, this setting turned it off for all contacts. With iOS 10 however, it’s possible to control read receipts for each of your contacts if they also have iPhones (otherwise the option is simply not available). Now you can let your boss know when you’ve read her message, while turning the feature off for that weird guy you met on Tinder [to quote Mac Observer!].
Open up a message from one of your contacts. In the upper right part of the screen, tap the blue circle with an ‘i’. There you can share your location, see a history of images and attachments with that contact – and control read receipts.]
2/ Modify AirPods behaviour — Once iOS 11 ships, which may be as soon as 12th September, you will have more options. For now, in iOS 10, you can change how your AirPods react when you double-tap on them, or switch what happens when you put them in your ears. You adjust these options on your iPhone or iPad. To get started, open your AirPods’ case or take them out of it, then visit Settings > Bluetooth on your paired iOS device.
There you’ll see a list of all of the Bluetooth devices you’ve added. If you don’t see Connected next to your AirPods, tap their name to connect.
Within this option, you can disconnect your AirPods (or have your device forget them entirely), change their name, or set what happens when you double-tap one of them. This is probably the most useful adjustment, as you could configure your AirPods to play/pause instead of invoking Siri with a double-tap.
Also on this screen are Automatic Ear Detection, which you can turn off if you don’t like your audio automatically being sent to your AirPods when you put them in your ears—and the Microphone setting. This lets you configure which AirPod you’d like to always be your microphone.
3/ Using 3D Touch in Spotlight — With a recent iPhone (6s/6s Plus or 7/7 Plus), you’re probably accustomed to your favourite uses for 3D Touch: looking at notifications within folders, opening new private tabs in Safari etc. You can also use Spotlight searches to find apps, and then if you press on a result within the Spotlight interface, you’ll get the same options you’d get by 3D-touching the app itself.
Start by swiping down on your home screen to open the iOS Spotlight search function, then type the name of an app into the search field at the top. Press with a little force on the app in the results to get the same Quick Action choices you would get from using 3D Touch on the app icon on the Home screen. You can use this, for example, to quickly find the Camera app and use its Quick Actions.
4/ In iOS 11, set up and customise Do Not Disturb While Driving — For those already beta-testing the next generation of iOS, you can do this now For the rest, you can do this soon. iOS 11 will add Do Not Disturb support for driving so you won’t get distracted while you’re cruising around town. You don’t have to use it, but if you do, it’s easy to set up and customise. Once iOS 11 is installed on your iPhone there’s a good chance you’ll get a dialogue asking if you want to turn on DND when you’re driving. The dialogue will pop up after you move off in your car.
Just tap Turn On While Driving and you’re set. Your iPhone will automatically go into DND mode when you’re in a moving car – it then mutes all incoming calls. You also won’t see other alerts and notifications while your car is in motion. (Of course, it won’ know if you’re driving or a passenger.)
DND While Driving can activate automatically when connected to your car’s Bluetooth, or manually. If you choose Manually, you will need to use the Do Not Disturb button in Control Center to activate the feature.
DND While Driving can auto-reply to text messages too. It’s your business who gets those messages, so you can change the settings and make your own custom reply:
Launch Settings on your iPhone
Tap Do Not Disturb
Choose Auto-Reply To
Select No One, Recents, Favorites, or All Contacts.
If you set your auto-reply to Favorites, it only goes to those people you’re in contact most. If you don’t want anyone to know when you’re in the car, choose No One.
To set an auto-reply, launch Settings on your iPhone
Tap Do Not Disturb
Enter a custom reply message.
If you need to get a message through to someone who has DND While Driving active, follow up your first message with a second that only says ‘urgent’.
5/ How to tell if Apple Watch notifications are from a native app or an iPhone app — Sometimes when you get a notification on your Apple Watch, you can tap on it for further options, or to open a corresponding app. At other times, that notification is from your iPhone, and there’s not much you can do with it other than dismiss it.
Here’s how to quickly tell the difference — it’s all in the shape. App icons on watchOS are circles, and when you get a notification from an app that is native to the Apple Watch, tapping on it will open the corresponding app. When an alert arrives, or you are browsing through past ones in Notification Center, the corresponding app icon is located in the upper left. If it’s a circle, tapping once will provide quick options like reply or dismiss, and tapping a second time will open the corresponding app.
But if the icon is a square, that means it’s simply an iPhone notification because app icons on the iPhone are rounded-corner squares.
There aren’t as many options for dealing with notifications not from native watchOS apps. Tap and you’ll have an option to dismiss, with no second tap to open the app, because the app is only on your iPhone.
This subtle distinction of round or square is an easy way to tell what you can do directly from your wrist, without the need to pull your phone out of your pocket.