7 Amazing Hidden Features and Upgrades my iOS 11 to Next Level of iOS 12

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iOS 11 was a major update to the iPhone and iPad’s operating system, and it brought a handful of useful features and upgrades to the platform. But despite the fact that iOS 11 is still relatively new, we’re already looking ahead to next year’s update: iOS 12.

1.True Connectivity Toggles

iOS 11 changed the way that the Bluetooth and Wi-FI toggles in Control Center work. Of course, the goal of that change was to ensure that connectivity with first- and third-party devices is more stable.

But it’s also annoying that there isn’t a more convenient option to turn off Bluetooth or Wi-Fi entirely. Apple could easily solve this by adding a proper “off” toggle in Control Center — maybe by way of a long-press or 3D Touch command.


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2.Sophisticated Camera Controls

Apple’s Camera app is simple, and that plays into the company’s “it just works” philosophy. But it would also be nice to have deeper and more easily accessible commands. For example, video resolution and framerate, file format and photo-grid options are all buried within Settings. It’d also be nice to have the option of toggling a “Pro” mode with manual controls for white balance and other functions — something third-party apps already do.


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3.More Powerful Files App

Files is a step in the right direction for Apple, but it could be a lot more powerful and useful. Sure, iOS’s strength is that it’s not Android, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t borrow some ideas from that platform.

While we’re not expecting a macOS Finder level of control over files, it’d be nice to have deeper access to locally stored files — not just those stored in iCloud Drive or other services. It’d also be nice to have the ability to browse external drives within the app, as well as a dedicated “Downloads” section for easy access to files grabbed via Safari.


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4.An Actual Dark Mode

A true Dark Mode in iOS is something that’s been rumored for quite a while, and it’s certainly something users want. Apple hinted at such a feature with its new skin for the Clock app in iOS 10, but since then, it’s left users hanging.

A systemwide, dark-themed skin is something that users have been requesting for some time, and no, the new “Smart Invert” in iOS 11 doesn’t count. An actual dark mode seems like it’d be easy enough to implement, though if Apple is planning the feature, it’s probably working to get it as close to perfect as possible.


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5.Richer Notifications

Again, iOS isn’t Android — and that’s a good thing. But it’s hard to argue that iOS has a better notification system than its more open-source competitor. According to many, it’s the one thing that Apple lags behind on.

iOS 12 could improve this by adding notifications stacked by app, additional notification filters, individual rich notifications for iMessage, and improved interactions with notifications in general. Even adding the ability to change the notification sound for third-party apps would be great.


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6.Power-User Settings

Apple prides itself on making devices that are incredibly simple and intuitive to use. And, for the most part, it’s achieved that goal with the iPhone. But by doing so, it’s left out a particular niche of users: power-users.

To make iOS 12 more inclusive, Apple could add advanced, power-user settings so that certain users could get the most out of their devices. An example? How about location-based settings, like the ability to receive email notifications while at work but mute those notifications while at home. Or a ‘Do Not Disturb While Watching Apple TV‘ setting.


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7.Expanded NFC Functionality

Apple, for the first time, opened up its NFC (near-field communication) framework to developers in iOS 11. But it’s still in its infant stages, and could be used for a range of more powerful and intuitive purposes in future versions of iOS.

Apple could allow for location- and object-based interactions, like the ability to pull up a movie trailer when you tap an NFC poster. And, if user-configurable NFC tags are brought into the mix, the automation possibilities are endless. Put an NFC tag on your bedside table, and it could automatically set your alarms when an iPhone is placed near it. Put one in your car, and it could automatically bring up a navigation app when you get in.

BONUS: Bring Back the App Store Wish List!

Apple completely revamped the App Store experience in iOS 11. But along with that refresh, it also, for whatever reason, decided to do away with the App Store Wish List.

It was an incredibly handy feature that let users keep track of paid apps that they’d like to purchase in the future. In iOS 11, it’s non-existant. And what’s more, users can’t even see the apps that they had previously added to the wish list. We’d like to see it return in iOS 12.


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