iOS 14.4’s best iPhone options: 17 things you’ll use every day

iOS 14 modifications the iPhone’s house display screen. 

Patrick Holland/CNET

Apple continues to replace its iOS 14 software program for the iPhone ($900 at Boost Mobile), including beneficial new capabilities and options. Most lately, Apple launched iOS 14.4, including a brand new exercise to Fitness Plus for Apple Watch house owners. It additionally included a brand new Unity watch face to have fun Black History Month. The replace additionally included a collection of safety fixes for vulnerabilities that had been actively being exploited. Yikes. 

The replace follows the addition of Apple ProUncooked pictures to the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max. Those new options be a part of an already spectacular record of capabilities that Apple delivered to its cellular units with the discharge of iOS 14 in September. 

For instance, you possibly can personalize your iPhone’s house display screen by creating customized app icons and inserting new widgets wherever you need. And a brand new Scribble characteristic within the iPad replace now permits you to use the Apple Pencil ($125 at Amazon) to put in writing in any textual content subject, and the pill will convert it to textual content, as a substitute of all the time pulling up the keyboard. And that is just the start. 

Here are the best suggestions and tips we have found for iOS 14 and iPadOS 14. We’ll steadily replace this put up, so test again for extra implausible suggestions. 

Read extra: How to put in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14


App Library is the iPhone’s new app drawer. 

Jason Cipriani/CNET

1. Check out the brand new house display screen options

The iPhone now has an app drawer-like characteristic referred to as App Library, which acts as a warehouse to retailer all the apps you do not repeatedly use. You can entry the App Library by swiping from proper to left in your display screen previous all your present house screens. Another first for the iPhone is the power to put widgets on the house display screen. Apple offered builders with the instruments to create a brand new model of widget that is certain to make your Android associates jealous. We go into extra element in regards to the house display screen modifications right here

2. Create a customized Smart Stack widget

Speaking of widgets, you are not locked into utilizing Apple’s curated Smart Stack widget. You can create your personal stack of widgets utilizing the identical approach you’d use to create an app folder. Seriously, it takes longer to determine which widgets you possibly can embody than it does to create it. 

Just preserve stacking widgets till you are completely happy. 

Animated picture by Jason Cipriani/CNET

3. Make your personal app icons

Apple additionally added new options to its Shortcuts app, with the preferred addition being the power to create your personal app icons and totally customise the look of your cellphone. So as a substitute of the Apple Mail app icon, you possibly can obtain an icon that replaces it with an image of a cute cat or the Gmail icon and use that to launch the app. The course of is considerably tedious, however if you need a house display screen that is in contrast to some other, it is properly price your time. 


Custom icons are all the trend proper now. 


4. Use apps with out putting in them, because of App Clips

Think of App Clips as miniature apps that solely present you a portion of what the total app can do. For instance, a Yelp App Clip may present you enterprise hours and the menu for a particular restaurant and nothing extra. Want to attempt one? Open the Apple Maps app in your iPhone, seek for Panera Bread, faucet on a location after which choose Order Food. Pretty cool, proper? After utilizing an App Clip, you possibly can entry it once more within the App Library within the lately added folder. 


iOS 14.3 brings with it ProUncooked photograph assist on the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max. Once you allow ProUncooked, you’ll see a brand new “RAW” button on the highest proper facet of the native digicam app.

Patrick Holland/CNET

5. iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max can take uncooked pictures

This is unquestionably a characteristic for pictures buffs, however one that can hopefully pique the curiosity of those that want to get a bit extra out of their iPhone digicam. The launch of iOS 14.3 provides Apple’s ProUncooked photograph format, which lets you take pictures utilizing the “raw” pictures format, and make modifications to it with none picture degradation, as is the case when the photograph is transformed to a JPG (the usual for Apple’s digicam app). 

For many extra particulars and directions on the place to search out the brand new setting, try our full ProUncooked information.


Apple’s Fitness Plus app is out there on the iPhone, iPad and AppleTV. 

Vanessa Hand Orellana/CNET

6. Work out at house with Fitness Plus

With gyms closed or operating at restricted capability, now’s the time to work out at house. Apple’s Fitness Plus service is constructed straight into your iPhone, iPad ($273 at Amazon) and Apple TV ($180 at Best Buy), and it makes use of your Apple Watch to trace your exercise. The guided video exercises are launched weekly, with choices for all totally different health ranges. Read our hands-on with the brand new service after which allow us to stroll you thru every little thing you want to know to set it up.

Read extra: How Apple’s Fitness Plus solves the Netflix forever-browsing downside


You can view particulars of what every session is about, together with preview the songs which can be included. 

Jason Cipriani/CNET

7. Time to take a stroll

Speaking of Fitness Plus, iOS 14.4 and WatchOS 7.3 added a brand new exercise referred to as Time to Walk. Apple has enlisted celebrities who go on a digital stroll with you, telling tales that are supposed to be inspiring, intertwined with private music selections. You’ll want to put in updates in your watch and cellphone earlier than you possibly can use it. Here’s tips on how to arrange and use the brand new exercise.  

8. Picture-in-Picture involves the iPhone

You’re now not compelled to determine whether or not you wish to watch a Twitch stream or browse Reddit in your iPhone. With iOS 14, you are able to do each on the similar time now that Apple has added picture-in-picture mode to the iPhone. The iPad has had this characteristic for a few years now, so it is good to see the iPhone get it as properly. When you begin watching a video you solely want to go away the app and return to the house display screen to set off PiP. There are some apps, like YouTube, that do not assist the characteristic. You can view a listing of all of the apps put in in your cellphone that assist it by going to Settings > General > Picture in Picture. Read extra about picture-in-picture to get a greater thought of when and the place it really works. 


Picture-in-picture is extremely helpful. 

Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET

9. Deleting apps could be complicated now

With the addition of the App Library, there’s now an additional step with regards to deleting an app out of your cellphone and for long-time iPhone customers, it is in no way simple. But it does not need to be too complicated; we stroll you thru the brand new steps

10. Ditch Apple Mail and Safari

Apple added the power to delete its personal apps out of your iPhone a couple of years in the past, however you continue to could not set apps like Gmail or Outlook as your default electronic mail app. Now you possibly can, however Apple has restricted this new characteristic to solely the e-mail and net browsers. It solely takes a couple of faucets to make the change, after which you will not need to take care of Apple’s apps ever once more. 


It’s true, you possibly can set some default apps on iOS 14. 

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

11. AirPods Pro has a brand new audio characteristic

The iPhone and iPad aren’t the one units that acquired an enormous replace. Apple’s AirPods Pro additionally acquired a small firmware replace that added a brand new characteristic referred to as Spatial Audio. You’ll, after all, must use an iPhone or iPad operating iOS 14 to use the characteristic. With each units up to date, everytime you’re watching a video the sound will observe the actions of your head, adjusting with every twist and switch. CNET’s David Carnoy described it as an “out-of-bud experience.” And he isn’t fallacious. 

12. The iPad seems extra like a Mac than ever

iPadOS 14 contains a number of new options and enhancements that convey its interface nearer to trying and dealing like a Mac. Or is it the Mac that is beginning to appear to be an iPad with MacOS Big Sur? Either manner, you’ll wish to be taught all you possibly can in regards to the new iPad options in iPadOS 14


Can’t discover that emoji you want? Search for it. 

Jason Cipriani/CNET

13. Hidden options are the best options

Not to be disregarded, there are a number of hidden options in iOS 14 that do some really superb things. For occasion, a brand new again faucet characteristic permits you to faucet on the again of your cellphone two or thrice, triggering a activity like taking a screenshot or launching an app. We’ve discovered a complete of 9 hidden options price sharing with you up to now and plan to maintain including to the record. 

14. New privateness options 

Keeping your data non-public is considered one of Apple’s foremost advertising and marketing factors, and iOS 14 goes even additional to assist preserve your data non-public. There are new location sharing settings that can restrict whether or not an app sees your precise location or a extra basic space. There’s additionally a brand new notification dot that can let you know when an app is utilizing your cellphone’s digicam or mic, and finer controls over which pictures an app has entry to. Check out all the new privateness options and tips on how to use them.


You haven’t got to inform apps precisely the place you’re when you do not wish to. 

Screenshots by Jason Cipriani/CNET

15. New digicam tips 

There are a number of refined however vital new options within the Camera app. For instance, when taking a photograph at evening, there is a new information to remind you to maintain nonetheless. You’ll see crosshairs that present you the place to maintain the digicam. There’s additionally a brand new publicity adjustment dial, and you’ll snap a number of pictures a lot faster. Learn tips on how to use and the place to search out the brand new options, full with animated photos. 

iOS 14 makes it so you possibly can take consecutive pictures sooner. There’s much less time from one photograph to a different.

Patrick Holland/CNET

16. Up your selfie sport

Another new characteristic within the Camera app is a brand new setting for the front-facing digicam that’s certain to assist your selfies shine. The new mirror mode forces the digicam to behave extra like a, properly, mirror, which might make it simpler to ensure your shot is framed and lined up the way in which you need. We present you the place to search out the brand new setting

17. Still need extra? We gotcha

As a bonus spherical, we have compiled a couple of extra tricks to do much more, like tag somebody in a bunch dialog within the Messages app and use Apple’s new Translate app to hold a dialog in two utterly totally different languages. We stroll you thru these two suggestions, plus a couple of extra of our favourite options

There’s nonetheless loads extra to be taught and determine in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, so we’re simply getting began. Just getting began with a brand new iPhone 12? Here’s tips on how to set it up. After that is achieved, you’ll want to test these settings. Finally, remember to switch your Google Authenticator accounts to your new cellphone. 


iOS 14 modifications the iPhone's house display screen. 

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iOS 14 suggestions and tips