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Future Tech: 

7 hidden iOS 8 tricks to supercharge your iPhone

iOS 8

It may look like iOS 7, but there’s more to iOS 8 than meets the eye

If you thought that Apple’s latest iPhone was going to be eclipsed by the arrival of the company’s very first smartwatch, then think again.

 Apple shifted more than 10 million slabs of shiny aluminium in one weekend 
The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus enjoyed record sales in their first weekend, shifting more than 10 million slabs of shiny aluminium to eager fans – some of which had been camping outside Apple stores for weeks.

As well as being the biggest and thinnest iPhones to date, Apple’s flagship devices are also the first to come pre-installed with iOS 8. Now, on the surface of it, Apple’s new OS looks a lot like the last one – right? But while its looks are more or less untouched, it’s actually filled with new tricks and features to help make your life easier. For starters, try these on for size.

1) Find out what’s draining your battery

While neither the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus has addressed Apple’s longstanding battery issues, with iOS 8 you can at least find out which apps are sucking up the most juice. Hidden away in your phone’s settings (Settings > General > Usage > Battery usage) you’ll find a complete breakdown of what’s been running down your battery over the last 24 hours, or over a longer period if you’re looking to cut out the worst culprits in the long term.

2) Search with Duck Duck Go

Hiding from Google search is one thing, but what if you’d rather ditch Google altogether? With iOS 8 you now have the option of surfing the web with Duck Duck Go (Settings > Safari > Search Engine), which describes itself as “the search engine that doesn’t track you”. Your search results will no longer be optimised to your history and preferences, but you’ll be safely out of the line of sight of Google’s prying eye.

3) Keyboards, keyboards, keyboards

One of the most exciting new features of iOS 8 is the ability to install third-party keyboards – a feature that has long been a notable point of difference between Apple and Android. So, whether you’re looking for a faster way to type, or you just want easy access to GIFs and emojis – we’ve got you covered.

4) Quick reply

Sometimes people pick the worst times to text. There you were, at the critical point in that candy crush level you’ve been stuck on when an ‘urgent’ message from mum pops up at the top of your screen. In iOS 8 you no longer have to leave the app you’re using to reply, just drag down the quick reply option, type a quick response, and get back to what you were doing. Simple.

5) Share your location via iMessage

Sharing your location with friends has been made easier than ever in iOS 8, with a new feature built right into iMessage. While before you’d have to open up maps and take a screenshot, now it’s as easy as tapping the ‘details’ tab on any conversation and sending or sharing location. The first option will send a map to your contact which they can open up within the conversation, while the latter gives you the option of sharing your location just for next hour or for the rest of the day.

6) Find your phone (even if the battery dies)

One of the major shortcomings of ‘Find my iPhone’ in previous incarnations of iOS is that its rendered useless once your phone runs out of battery. This changes with iOS 8, with a new option (Settings > iCloud > Find my iPhone > Send last location) that will send your last location to Apple servers even if your lost phone decides to quit on you.

7) Selfies on a timer

Remember last week when we looked at the ways in which tech companies are zoning in on Generation Selfie? Well, Apple are at it too. Its latest operating system has optimised the selfie even further with the addition of a timer function on the iOS 8 camera app. A simple addition, perhaps, but no doubt one which prove very popular.

Got any more iOS 8 tips? Share them in the comments below.

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