iOS 7 Tips

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Hide Notifications on Lock Screen

If you are locking your device with a passcode, chances are you want to keep your notifications away from prying eyes. Go to Settings > Notification Center and turn off Notifications View and/or Today View. You can also leave Today View on and refine which items appear on this screen.

Flash LED for Notification Alerts

Your iPhone will make a sound or vibrate when you receive a notification. This can be triggered by an incoming email, text message, or app notification. Sometimes it may be useful to be visually aware of the notification. This is helpful for the hearing impaired or anyone who is in a noisy environment. iOS 7 makes it easy to trigger the LED flash for notifications.

Flash iPhone LED for alerts

First, tap on Settings > General > Accessibility. Scroll down to Hearing and turn on LED Flash for Alerts. After you make this change, your iPhone’s LED (on the back of your device) will flash whenever you receive an alert.

Respond to Calls With Preset Text Messages

If you get a phone call you can’t answer, iOS 7 will let you send back one of three configurable text messages as a response. Go to Settings > Phone > Respond With Text and enter up to three messages. When you get a call, you can tap “Respond With Text” and pick one of the three text messages to send.

respond with text

Use Flashlight to Drain Battery

If you are calibrating your battery regularly, as you should be, you may find it difficult to drain the battery. Even when the iPhone has 2% battery life left, it can take hours to drain the battery until the device powers itself off. You can drain the battery rapidly by turning on the LED flashlight. Simply slide up from the bottom of any screen to reveal Control Center. Tap the flashlight icon and leave it on until your device powers down. If you also play a streaming video (Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube) and turn up the screen brightness, your battery will drain even faster.

Stop Control Center from Sliding Up

You may have an app that requires gesturing from the bottom of your iOS device, such as a video game. Using the app could make Control Center slide up, interfering with game play. Fortunately, you can disable Control Center’s “slide up from the bottom” gesture. Go to Settings > Control Center to disable Control Center access on the lock screen and within apps. Disabling it from the lock screen may also be a good idea. It could prevent a malicious user from opening Control Center, turning on the flashlight, and draining your battery. I’m not too worried about that scenario, and prefer the convenience of accessing Control Center from the lock screen. However, people with small children or mischievous co-workers may find it useful.

Camera: Focus and Shoot With Volume Button

iOS 7 comes with many new camera features. Among them is the ability to focus and shoot the camera using the volume buttons on the side of your iPhone. Simply hold either volume button down for a second. If you continue to hold the volume button, Camera will continue to take photos. This isn’t as good as tapping the screen, which tells the camera where to focus, however it’s helpful if you can only use one hand. (continue…)

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