Earlier this month, Apple launched their new operating system for iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch – iOS 14. While some users are hesitant to try new operating systems straight after launch, as they can be a little buggy at first, we would certainly encourage you to take advantage of some of the exciting iOS 14 productivity features Apple has to offer. Here’s what we have enjoyed the most.
With the new upgrade, Apple has introduced some exciting elements that allow iMessage to compete with other popular apps like WhatsApp and Slack. First off, the group chat feature has seen a tremendous upgrade. You can now tag other people in the group chat and create threaded replies. If you don’t want to be disturbed and receive multiple messages, you can set you notifications to only alert you when someone tags you in the chat. Plus, with pinned conversations, you can pin up to 9 conversations, which lets you easily access the most important messages to make sure they don’t get lost among the rest.
In a time where just about every hospitality business uses table service and most companies have dedicated apps for parking, rentals etc, it can be quite inconvenient to download every single one of them and create an account for each, when you may not even use it more than once. App clips is a very handy iOS 14 productivity tool, because it lets you use a ‘light’ version of the app, which doesn’t need to be downloaded. This way, you can quickly and easily access the features you need and, when you’re done, the app clip disappears from your phone. We think this is a great time-saver and prevents you from overloading your device with unnecessary apps!
Following on from the convenience of app clips, you can now hide certain apps from your phone screen and place them into App Library. This helps to reduce decision fatigue, as you can choose to only keep the apps on your screen that you actually use on a regular basis and hide ones that you may only need occasionally. We find that a more organised and streamlined screen provides you with much more clarity! In addition, app library intuitively shows you apps that you may be looking for, based on usage habits like time, location and activity. You can also hide home screen pages to optimise your device even further.
The way you use widgets has changed in the new iOS 14! You can now place widgets on the home screen, allowing you to access information quickly and easily. There is a widget gallery, where you can see all your widgets from Apple and third parties. Within that, you have the new Smart Stack feature, which lets you swipe through an iOS 14 widgets list, based on your activity, time, location etc. This is a brilliant iOS 14 productivity feature, as it will intuitively show you widgets, you’re most likely to be looking for. For example, if you enjoy reading the news in the morning and then commute to work straight after, you will see the relevant widgets in that succession.
With the previous update, you had to manually connect AirPods to each of your devices every time you wanted to switch between them. AirPods get a great new update with iOS 14, letting you automatically switch between devices based on what you’re doing. For example, if you’ve finished a Teams call on your iPad, you can jump straight onto your iPhone to answer a call, without having to manually switch your AirPods.
Compact User Interface
Finally, one of our favourite iOS 14 productivity enhancements is the compact user interface design. Instead of taking up the whole screen, calls now appear as notifications at the top, without interrupting what you’re doing. Siri also has a new, compact design, letting you see the information on screen while launching into a new task. Its search results now offer only the information you actually need to get on with your agenda. The picture in picture feature is perfect for taking a face time call while using another app to make bookings or complete tasks, as you’re having a conversation with a client or collaborator. It’s a great feature for multitasking and certainly improves your iOS 14 productivity.
If you’re looking to give iOS 14 a go but are worried that some apps may not have been updated yet, we would recommend backing up your device first so you can easily recall your settings if anything goes wrong.