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33 great tips and tricks for iOS 7

Serenity Caldwell and Dan Moren | April 21, 2014
Whether it's the first time you've picked up an iPad or the seventeenth time you've pulled out your iPhone today, there are probably still some iOS 7 features and functionality that you're not familiar with. Don't sweat it: We're here to help. We've collected some of our favorite and most useful tips and compiled them here, just for you.

After you've filmed something, open iMovie and create a new project with your clip. Next, separate your clip into three segments by swiping down on the film strip: the intro normal-speed segment, a slow-motion segment, and the ending normal-speed segment. Finally, tap on the middle segment, choose Speed, and drag the slider toward the Tortoise icon. Voilà: easy in-and-out slow-motion.

Phone it in

14. Block annoying calls: We haven't solved the problem of email spam, but telemarketing can be slightly less annoying with a new feature of iOS 7: call blocking. You can choose to not receive calls from a specific number or contact by tapping the i' button next to that entry in the Recents or Voicemail sections of the Phone app, scrolling down, and choosing Block this Caller. (It also works on any contact card in the Phone or Contacts app.) Note that by doing so you also won't receive text messages/iMessages or FaceTime calls from that number or contact. If you've blocked someone in error, you can edit the no-call list under Settings > Phone > Blocked.

15. Make FaceTime Audio calls for cheap: Calling plans are pretty cheap these days, but if you're looking to pare down, you can make FaceTime Audio calls over Wi-Fi or cellular data networks. Just make sure you've enabled FaceTime in the Settings app, then find an entry in the Contacts or Phone app and tap the phone icon next to FaceTime. You'll immediately launch into an audio-only FaceTime call, though you can switch over to a video call at any point by tapping the FaceTime button. You can even add a FaceTime Audio call to your Phone app's Favorites by tapping Add to Favorite on any contact card, and then selecting FaceTime Audio.

16. Enter a phone conference code at a tap: Many of us have had to dial either hard-to-remember extensions or conference room codes at some point. If you find yourself making those calls frequently, you can simplify the process. Go to the Keypad section of the Phone app and enter the phone number you dial; then, at the end, tap and hold the pound key until it turns into a semicolon. Now enter the passcode or extension, and then add the whole shebang to a new or existing contact record. Next time you dial that contact or number, you'll see a small button in the bottom left that says "Dial" with the code you entered; tap that to have it entered on the keypad automatically.

Talk to Siri

17. Speak your settings: Siri's become a bit smarter across the board in iOS 7, and one of those IQ improvements deals with controlling your settings. You can ask Siri to turn Bluetooth on or off, open a specific Settings pane, and even turn on Airplane Mode — though Apple's voice assistant gets a little snarky if you ask for that last one.


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