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Often, iPhone tips and tricks are about going above and beyond to do something worthy of a double-take. Triple tapping the back of your iPhone to make it take a screenshot or mute the volume, for instancethats neat. Not everyone needs their phone to do that type of thing though. Im more interested in making sure everyone knows about a few foundational features that have graduated and moved beyond being tricks.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of ways to make using an iPhone faster and more convenient. Not only will certain tasks like typing an email or home address be easier, but more mundane ones like clearing out old unwanted images from your photo library will be much faster too.

If youre scrolling down a webpage and want to return to the top, tap the top center of your screen next to the front-facing camera. This tap will pull you back to the top. Not only can you do this on web pages, but this feature largely works everywhere on your phoneincluding apps and settings screens.

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Instead of furiously flip-scrolling to get back to the top, you can simply touch the top of the screen. I use this with Instagram and my email app all the time to get back to the most recent items. Also, if youve ever been jolted to the top of a website without knowing why, this may answer that question.

Before emoji were prevalent throughout the operating system and easy to get to, I had a text replacement that would automatically display the Vulcan salute emoji whenever I typed llap (short for Live long and prosper). The point here is that you can make any random characters transform into things you type all the time or things that are hard to remember. Head to Settings and tap on General. Tap on Keyboard, and then tap on Text Replacement to add whatever suits you. I might suggest:

  • Using eml to expand into your full email address
  • Having a text replacement for your home address if you need to type that out often
  • Putting non-secret codes or other infrequently used information in here to expand with a simple command

Keep in mind, however, youll need to use uncommon letters to trigger text replacements. If you use email for example, every time you type that word it will show your replacement, which could get annoying. As a bonus, these text replacements sync across iCloud, so if you use a Mac or iPad, these will be available there too.

Within the Photos app you can hide pictures from appearing in your general photo library. This will keep sensitive images from being seen whenever you open that app. To hide a photo, tap on one (or select a few) and then tap the share icona box with an arrow pointing up. Scroll down until you see Hide and select that option.

You can find photos youve hidden by going to Albums and scrolling down until you see Hidden. If you dont want that Hidden folder to appear at all, you can also hide it by going to Settings and turning it off within the Photos section.