We've gotten so used to using our smartphones for just about everything that chances are there aren't many things it can do that surprise you. You can use it to order food, FaceTime with people who are worlds apart, and shoot 4K video that automatically backs up to the cloud. The technology behind all of those things is pretty amazing, but there are a few things your iPhone can do that will totally mess with your head.

Here are 9 things you probably had no idea your iPhone could do:

1. Smart Do Not Disturb

You're in a meeting with a major client and your iPhone keeps buzzing because someone on your team is sending a group message about an issue that isn't all that important right now. You probably already knew you could enable Do Not Disturb mode to silence notifications, but did you know that if you long press on the DND icon in control center, you could set it to last until you either leave your current location or, even better, until the current event on your calendar ends.

2. Text magnifier in screenshots.

Ever have to send a screenshot to someone to show them how to do something? Did you know you could add the magnifier tool to highlight whatever it is you're trying to demonstrate? Just select the "+" icon in the lower right corner of the markup menu and select magnifier, and it'll bring up a loupe tool. You can place it and then adjust the zoom and overall size. By the way, you can also add text and your signature. And you can add them to photos too. 

3. Take a photo during a video.

If you've ever started taking a video and wished you could capture a photo, you can. When shooting video a white button appears. That button lets you take a photo without interrupting your video. No more stopping the video to catch higher quality stills--you can do both. The only downside is that the photos are the same aspect ratio as the video.

4. Calculator delete.

The calculator app is definitely a handy tool, but did you know that if you mistype a number, instead of hitting clear, you can simply swipe left on the number display to delete the last digit? You're welcome. 

5. Share your location with messages.

The next time you're meeting a co-worker somewhere, or trying to connect with someone at a tradeshow or conference, and they send you a text asking where you are, just send them your location in messages. In fact, if you start typing "I'm at" the Siri will automatically suggest sharing your location in the smart keyboard.

They'll get a map with your current location pinned. No more trying to describe where you are, or figuring out where they are to send directions. 

6. Siri Shortcuts.

Wouldn't it be sweet if you could just say to your iPhone, "Hey Siri, I'm headed home" and it would automatically send a text message to your husband or roommate, and then pull up a map with directions from your current location? Well, if you're using Siri Shortcuts, you can. 

Shortcuts lets you string together actions and trigger them with just a voice command. There's a gallery of shortcuts already made, or make your own. You can even download some really cool and interesting ones. 

7. Sleep timer.

If you like to fall asleep listening to music, did you know you could set a timer that will stop the music when it expires? I like to listen to music when I'm writing and l actually use it to remind me to take a break and walk around when the music stops.

Just open the Clock app, tap on the "timer" icon at the bottom, set your time, and select "when timer ends." Scroll all the way to the bottom and choose "Stop Playing." Ahhhh... silence! 

8. Password sharing.

This is one of my favorite things that you can do with your phone. If you've ever connected to a password-protected Wi-Fi hotspot from your phone, you can easily connect to that same Wi-Fi with your laptop without having to re-enter your password. Airdrop will basically bounce that password over from your iPhone and automatically connect you as long as both devices are logged into your iCloud account, or if the other device belongs to someone in your contacts list. 

9. Spacebar trackpad.

Ever try to edit text by tapping somewhere to place the cursor? Sorry, it wasn't very nice of me to remind you. It's not any fun. Fortunately, there's a better way. Simply long press on the spacebar and the keyboard turns into a trackpad that lets you move the cursor exactly where you want it. 

Published on: May 14, 2019
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