Six Quick iOS 9 Tweaks To Try

iOS 9 is now available for a variety of Apple’s mobile devices. Here’s six quick tweaks to make the most of your iOS 9 experience.
Some of iOS 9’s features, such as improved battery life or the new “San Francisco” font are rather hard to miss, but there’s other features in iOS 9 that you could easily skip over and lose the benefit of.

  • Settings Search
    This is simple, but seriously useful if you’re ever left wondering where in the Settings App Apple’s hidden a given feature. The Settings App now has its own search field that makes it simple to find a given toggle — as long as you can remember what it’s called!

  • Use The Back Button
    It’s been a staple — albeit sometimes a wildly inconsistent staple — of Android pretty much forever, but iOS 9 finally has a “back” function. If you’re called to one app from another, you should see a “Back to original app” text link at the top of the page. Tapping that will, as you’d expect, take you back to your original app.

  • Bigger App Folders on iPad
    Again, another subtle one, but iPad folders now run in 4×4 sets, rather than 3×3. iOS 9 won’t automatically sort existing folders to change the number of pages, but you can now see much more of a folder’s contents without opening it.

  • Wi-Fi Assist Can Speed Your Data (At A Price)
    Wi-Fi Assist is meant to make your life easier by jumping over to 3G/4G connections if your existing Wi-Fi connection is weak or slow. This is grand in theory and could work quite well for you, but it’s worth keeping in mind that your price for 3G/4G data is much higher than most Wi-Fi connections, and keeping Wi-Fi Assist on could cost you money if your Wi-Fi is consistently poor. It’s in Settings>Mobile>Wi-Fi Assist, right down the bottom. And yeah, again, some Android devices have had similar features for a while.

  • Multitasking (Sort Of)
    One of the headline features of iOS 9 is the ability to multitask on iPad with multiple apps, but it’s not all that well understood. The “full” multitasking feature is really only open to iPad Air 2 owners (and, presumably, iPad Mini 4 and iPad Pro owners in due course), with Split View full multitasking available if you slide out from the right hand side of the screen and select your app of choice. At the moment, that’s Apple apps predominantly, although that’ll improve with time.
    If you’re not running this or last year’s iPad, you’re stuck with “Slide Over”, which uses the same swipe-from-the-right gesture to temporarily pause the active app and run a second app in a smaller column. It’s handy, but it’s not true multitasking. You do get the advantage of the Picture In Picture feature, which allows you to shrink video (including Facetime) to concentrate on a secondary app.

  • Manually Manage Your Power
    The “new” (again, Android’s had this for some time now) Low Power Mode is meant to kick in when your iPhone hits 20 percent or lower power, shuffling down the processor frequency in order to eke out more power until you can get a recharge. I will say that I like this approach more than the competing “shut down everything but calls and texts” approach of many Android devices, but you’re not stuck waiting to hit 20 percent if you know you’re a very long way from a power socket or portable battery. Head to Settings>Battery to kick it into gear whenever you like, or switch it off if you’re finding the going a little slow and know that you’ll be able to recharge soon.

Author: Alex

Alex Kidman is a multi-award winning Australian technology writer, former editor at Gizmodo, CNET, GameSpot, ZDNet, PC Mag, APC, Finder and as a contributor to the ABC, SMH, AFR, Courier Mail, GadgetGuy, PC & Tech Authority, Atomic and many more. He's been writing professionally since 1998, and his passions include technology, social issues, education, retro gaming and professional wrestling.

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