iOS 16 Hidden Features and Settings You'll Want to Try On Your iPhone

iOS 16 Hidden Features and Settings You’ll Want to Try On Your iPhone

Apple releases a major iPhone software update every year. In 2021, that was iOS 15 (now iOS 15.6), and in 2022, it is iOS 16. If you haven’t heard it yet, unsent text messages and a redesigned lock screen they’re two of the most expensive features to come to your iPhone, but those items are just the beginning. You’ll be excited to learn that there are several new hidden features that could completely change the way you use your iPhone.

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If you want to take a closer look at some of the hidden gems that iOS 16 has to offer, like password-protected photo albums and easily accessible Wi-Fi passwordsthis is what you need to know.

read more: Will your iPhone run iOS 16? Some will not be compatible

And if you want to learn more about Apple’s latest mobile operating system, we have iOS 16 new features you’ll love and a couple Apple Maps features that will improve the way you travel.

You can also get iOS 16 right now. Look how Download and install the first beta on your iPhone.

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Testing iOS 16 (Edit/Delete Sent Messages, New Lock Screen…


Hidden and recently deleted albums are now password protected

The hidden album in the Photos app is clearly not hidden as you can easily find it, which makes it impractical to properly hide private photos and videos. While Apple has an option to make the hidden album “invisible”, anyone with access to your phone can make it visible again and see everything on it.

Thanks to iOS 16, you can now lock the Hidden album. You don’t actually need to do anything to activate this feature. If you want to check it, launch the Photos app and go to the albums tab at the bottom of the screen. If you scroll down, you will see a small padlock next to the Hidden Y recently deleted albums To see what’s inside, use Face ID or your password.

The Hidden Album in Photos

Hidden and Recently Deleted albums now require Face ID to access.

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View and share saved Wi-Fi passwords

Apple has allowed iOS users to share Wi-Fi passwords for a while now, but only by placing two Apple devices near each other. And if that feature didn’t work automatically, you couldn’t just dig up the password from your settings. Also, if you wanted to share a saved Wi-Fi password with someone else, like an Android user or someone on a computer, you had to know the password. Until now.

read more: You can finally see your saved Wi-Fi passwords on an iPhone

In Settings, go to Wifi and tap the little info icon to the right of the network you want the password for. To view the network password, touch the Key code and then use Face ID or enter your passcode to view it. You can then touch Copy to copy the password to your clipboard and share it.

Wi-Fi network settings in iOS 16

You can see the password for any Wi-Fi network you’ve ever connected to, as long as you’re connected to it or close enough for it to show up in My Networks.

Nelson Aguilar/CNET

Find and remove duplicate photos and videos

Maybe you saved the same photo multiple times or downloaded a video more than once, so you have duplicates in your photo album. That might not be a problem if you have storage to spare, but if not, it might be a good idea to go back and delete all the duplicates, which is now easy to do in iOS 16.

In Photos > albumsnow you should see a new duplicates album in Utilities, where Apple scans all your photos and shows you any photos or videos you’ve saved more than once. From there you can remove any duplicates or just hit Linkwhich will keep the photo at full quality (and relevant data) and then move the others to the trash.

Duplicate folder in Photos

Merging will keep the highest quality photo and remove the rest.

Nelson Aguilar/CNET

Although you’ll probably want to review each set of duplicates, to make sure they’re actually exact copies and not similar photos, you can also press Select > Select all > Link to delete all the photos and videos that Apple thinks are a duplicate, all at once.

Pin your favorite tabs in Safari

Safari limits your open tabs to 500, and if you’re getting close to that limit, it can be quite difficult to find the exact tab you’re looking for. You can scroll endlessly, but now there’s an easier way to find the exact tab you’re looking for.

In Safari, if you press down on an open tab, you now have the option to press pin tab. This will move that tab to the top of Safari, where it will exist as a small tab preview, permanently pinned there, which you can then tap to view.

Pin a tab in Safari

All pinned tabs appear at the top of Safari.

Nelson Aguilar/CNET

If you press down and unpin a tab, it will move to the first place in your grid of open tabs.

Pair the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons with your iPhone

Apple has long allowed you to pair third-party controllers, such as PS5 Sony DualSense and Xbox Core Controller, with your iPhone and iPad, to more comfortably play mobile video games like the apple arcade library, Minecraft and Call of Duty. And you can add another console controller to that list.

If you have a nintendo switchYou can now pair your Joy-Con controllers with your iPhone or iPad running iOS 16. To get started, press and hold the small black pairing button on the Joy-Con, until the green lights begin to flicker back and forth. This means the device is in pairing mode. Next, open your iPhone and go to Settings > Bluetooth and select the Joy Con of the list. Repeat this step with the other Joy-Con.

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