Southeast Missouri State University student publication

How to make the most out of your IOS 14 update

Monday, October 5, 2020
Graphic by Madison Stuerman

It has been over two weeks since Apple came out with their most recent iPhone update, and if you’re like me, then you’ve probably already played around widgets and shortcuts on your device. If you aren’t like me and want to learn how to customize your phone with the new update, you are definitely in the right place!

>>>>>The first step is to update your iPhone to iOS 14. Obviously.

>>>>>The second is to decide if you want to make new icons for your apps. If not, then skip on down!

So, to give your apps a new icon, find the Shortcuts application installed on your phone automatically. On the “My Shortcuts” tab on the app, tap the “+,” and then click “add action.” Next, you will decide what app you want to change. For example, let's use Instagram. Search “open app,” then choose Instagram, and hit “Next.” Name the shortcut Instagram or whatever name you want. Just be sure to hit the three little dots and click “Add to Home Screen.” This is where you can add the new icon by clicking on the highlighted box under “Home Screen Name and Icon.” Then just hit “Done.”

>>>>>Some FREE apps I recommend downloading to get started would be Widgetsmith and Color Widgets. I use Widgetsmith for everything, but there are many apps you can find by searching “Widget” on the app store.

>>>>>The next thing is to decide how you want your layout to look. I’ll be honest, this is what took the most time for me. After endless searching through Instagram, Tumblr and Tik Tok, I came across a few that I used for inspiration.

To start your layout, just edit the home screen and click the “+” in the top left corner and add as many widgets as your heart desires!

Make sure to go into your settings, tap “Accessibility” > “Motion” > “Turn on Reduce Motion.” This reduces the amount of time between the shortcut application and new icon.

Another feature I have already utilized multiple times is the picture within a picture feature. You can watch your shows while live-tweeting about them or read your text messages while on Facetime.

If you are looking for more ways to personalize your phone, there is also a way to have a sound play when doing certain actions like charging your phone, going into airplane mode, etc. I recommend Googling it, but in short, tap the “Automation” tab, create a new personal automation, and play around with it from there!

Apple also included a feature that indicates if your phone camera and microphone are on or if any apps have recently been used. If you see a little green dot to the right of your camera, that means your camera is on. If you see orange, then your microphone is recording.

Want to watch how I do these cool things, or have a layout you want to share or a feature you are using a lot? Visit me on Twitter @MadisonS_Arrow; I'd love to hear from you!