Smart phones are constantly being updated with new features. Many of these features go unnoticed. Try these tips to use your smart phone to its fullest potential. Today’s smartphones are powerful and feature-packed, we are sharing just a few of the more practical hidden features found in iPhones and Androids.

iPhone

Silence Unknown Callers: Have you ever been plagued with random phone calls from numbers around the world, robo calls, or telemarketers looking to save you money on your insurance? iPhone has the exact feature you need to end it! The Silence Unknown Callers function sends calls from unknown numbers directly to voicemail and displayed on your Recent list. Numbers that are in your contacts, recently called and Siri suggestions will continue to ring when they call you. To turn this feature on:

  1. . Open Settings
  2. . Tap on “Phone”
  3. . Toggle the Silence Unknown Callers button to on

Group FaceTime Call: Don’t worry about downloading and setting up accounts with Zoom or Skype to have group video conference calls! With this iPhone feature, you can add up to 31 people to the same FaceTime call. Here’s how to do it:

  1. . Open the FaceTime app on your iPhone
  2. . Tap the + button on the top right of your screen
  3. . Enter the name or number of the person you want to call first
  4. . Enter up to 30 additional contacts
  5. . Tap Video or Audio to place your FaceTime call

Customize Text Messages When Screening A Call: We all get busy and sometimes must ignore a phone call. It doesn’t mean you have you leave your friends or family hanging though. Your iPhone has three pre-written text options you can send instantly. These messages can be customized to suit your style/circumstances. Here’s how to edit them:

  1. . Open your Settings app
  2. . Tap on “Phone”
  3. . Tap on “Respond with Text”
  4. . Tap which field you want to edit
  5. . Enter new text (these automatically save when you exit)

Android

Smart Lock: Smart lock is a great feature that give you more control over your lock screen. It sets up geofencing so when you enter certain trusted locations, your phone’s lock screen is disabled. You can setup an unlimited amount of locations such as home, work, school, church, etc.  So, when your phone is lying next to you in the office, you needn’t unlock it numerous times throughout the day. To setup Smart Lock:

  1. . Open your Settings
  2. . Tap on “General”
  3. . Tap on “Lock Screen & Security” or “Security & Privacy”
  4. . Tap on “Trust Agents”
  5. . Toggle the Smart Lock button on and enter your pin
  6. . In the same area, setup your trusted locations

One-Handed Mode in Gboard: If you’re one that prefers texting one handed, this feature was made specifically for you. When activated, the keyboard shifts over to either the left or the right (depending on your dominant hand) to easier reach all the keys using only one hand. To activate:

  1. . With the keyboard open long-press on the comma
  2. . Slide over to the icon that looks like a hand holding a box
  3. . Designate which hand you use

Split-Screen Mode: Do you ever jump back and forth between two apps? This cool feature splits your screen and allows you access to both at once. You can use this in either portrait mode (in which the apps are stacked one on top of the other) or in landscape mode (in which the apps appear side by side). To activate:

  1. . Make sure both apps you want to use are open
  2. . With one of them open on screen, long-press on the Recent Apps button (this is the square icon to the right of the home button)
  3. . A list of available open apps comes up. Select the second app you would like to use.

These are only a few of the long list of less well-known features available in iPhones or Androids. Updating your operating systems regularly will help ensure your phone functions properly and makes the latest features available. Take a little time and do some exploring and see what other fun/useful features you can find!