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When Steve Jobs took to the stage in 2007 to unveil the first iPhone, he had in mind a few specific selling points. This was a device that could take pictures, play music, browse the internet, and take calls, too. At the time, it was a game-changer.
Since then, the smartphone has evolved in ways that even Jobs didn’t anticipate. Many of the capabilities of a modern smartphone are mysterious, even to the people who use them every day.
Let’s run through ten of the most clever things that your smartphone does. We’ll focus mostly on iPhone, but many of these capabilities have equivalents on Android, too.
Set a timer for your music
You can set an iPhone to automatically stop playing music after a certain period has elapsed. This is great if you want to listen to music as you drift off. Just go to the options under ‘when timer ends’.
Tracks every location you have been to
We might think of this one as slightly sinister – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. In your iPhone, check out your ‘frequent locations’ option.
Switches your screen off during calls
There’s a good reason that you don’t accidentally set your touchscreen off with your face while you’re speaking: with the help of proximity sensors, it’ll turn the screen off at the appropriate moment.
It can work without a power button
If your power button breaks, you might not need to start shopping for a new phone just yet. If you have ‘AssistiveTouch’ turned on, you can benefit from a small onscreen icon that will allow you to lock and unlock your phone right from the screen.
Delete old screenshots
Screenshots can be useful – but if you forget to delete them, they can also be a pain. Fortunately, you can delete all of your screenshots in one go, since they’re tagged by type.
Track your phone even if it’s turned off
Your phone doesn’t need to be turned on to be trackable. In the iPhone, a special onboard reserve will allow you to track yours even after it’s been factory reset.
Create custom vibrations on your phone
If you want to be able to tell when a notification is important without taking your phone out of your pocket, then you might set up a custom vibration.
It can replace a levelling tool
Phones come with built-in gyroscopes, which are used for everything from games to camera orientation. With the help of the right app, you can also use your phone to make sure that a set of shelves is level.
Automatically enables ‘do not disturb’ at work
If you’d prefer not to receive personal calls when you’re at the office or the classroom, then you can set your phone to automatically enter ‘do not disturb’ mode at the relevant location.
Unlock your phone with your voice
Nowadays, we have access to an unprecedented range of options for unlocking our phones. But probably the most intuitive of these is a voice command. Set it up and you’ll wonder how you did without it!