4 iPhone and Android Tricks You Might Not Know About

Turns 15 this summer Apple released the first iPhone, and since then, smartphones have become the technological knives of the Swiss army. But with the avalanche of updates since 2007, less obvious features are often left behind. Here’s a brief overview of some of the perhaps overlooked tools shown here in iOS 15 and Android 12.

The mapping app has been part of the modern smartphone toolkit since the beginning, but now Google and Apple have added a camera and a touch of augmented reality to it for extra help with navigating the ground. (However, your results will vary by location, and be prepared for some battery drain.)

On Google Maps for android as well as iOS, enter a destination, touch Routes, and select On foot. Click Live Stream icon in the corner of the map. Your phone instructs you to point the camera at nearby buildings so that the app can recognize your surroundings by comparing it to Google Street View images. Once installed, your directions are displayed on the camera screen to guide you.

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Apple Maps uses the iPhone’s camera in a similar way when you request walking directions in supported cities. and tap the augmented reality icon on the map screen. (For alternative navigation options, Apple includes an offline digital compass app with iOS, and Google Maps has compass which appears on the screen when you start your journey.)

In addition to being a tour guide, the phone’s camera can act as a document scanner as well as document scanners. quick response, or QR codes. On iOS you can scan a document or receipt in the Notes app by creating a new note, clicking the camera icon in the toolbar, and selecting Scan Documents. You can too scan and attach document to an email message that you create by tapping the scan icon on the keyboard toolbar.

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Credit…Google

As for these square black and white QR codes for websites or electronic payment systems, just open Apple Camera App or Google Camera and point it at the QR code to scan it. Many of the Samsung products Galaxy phones have a QR scanner an option that works with the camera app as well.

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But there is a caveat with QR codes besides privacy considerations: Be careful to only scan codes from trusted sources because cybercriminals use them to fraud and to distribute malware.

The phone’s microphone has also expanded its capabilities. not only voice notes, dictation and audio/video calls in recent years. One reason: Apple acquisition 2018 or Shazam music recognition app.

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The Auto Shazam feature, which automatically tries to identify music playing nearby, works on both devices. iOS as well as Android Versions and it can be turned on by pressing and holding the Shazam button while the app is open. (This may result in additional battery and data consumption.)

Once you’ve identified a song with Shazam, you can play it on your Apple Music, Deezer, Spotify or YouTube Music account. In the Shazam settings, you can connect your list of recognized songs to Apple Music or Spotify.

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Many Google Pixel phones have a similar Now playing a feature that you can turn on in the “Sound and Vibration” settings. Once activated, the software displays song titles on the lock screen and creates a history list of music played within microphone range. (The Now Playing tool is designed for Pixel phones, but web searches show that the creative programmers have adapted it for other Android phones.)

If you need emergency assistance, there are shortcuts on your phone to reach you. On iPhone 8 or later, hold down the rightside button and one of the volume buttons until the icon appears Emergency SOS slider on the screen, and then drag the slider to call the local emergency number; if you can’t drag the slider, keep holding the buttons until the phone makes the call automatically. In the Emergency SOS settings, you can enable your phone to make an emergency call by pressing the side button five times.

Credit…Apple; Google

Android phones, including Google Pixel as well as Galaxy Samsung models have their own emergency aids. On phones with a power button, hold down this button until you see the emergency call icon, and then tap it. On a phone without a power button, try swiping down the screen to get to emergency quick settings, or swiping up from the bottom to get to the emergency button. Google’s free personal security app for Android provides more tools to handle future emergencies for those who like to be prepared.