iOS 9 Update Essential Tips and Tricks

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Apple has offered eight years of upgrades and over this span of time, we’ve come to expect certain things with iOS updates. New apps, different wallpaper, a couple marquee features and a host of minor speed and usability improvements give users plenty of reasons to hit the upgrade button. Downloading a new iOS release is like giving yourself a present; it’s breathing new life into your iPhone or iPad.

The iOS 9 release has a lot of fun new things to explore, but unlike the features of most updates past, many are intuitive. ioS 9 is a so-called maintenance release; it’s all about making your iPhone easier to use by making the device smarter rather than rebuilding and adding to it. There are many small changes in iOS 9 rather than big ones, smoothing over the rough edges of iOS8 to be more coherent and navigable. So although there aren’t too many revolutionary changes, the usability tweaks of iOS 9 make your device feel like a truly polished operating system. Here are some of our favorite tips and tricks for the iOS 9 update.


The biggest change in the iOS 9 is Siri, who has become more powerful and seamlessly integrated into the UI than ever before. Siri is now the universal remote for your iPhone. It can now look through your photos and see what you’re looking at to help you remember or handle it later. Siri hasn’t always had the best reputation, but with iOS 9, it’s become the most efficient way to do almost anything on your iPhone.

Quick Select

Users can now quickly select a large number of images or videos within the photo app by hitting the Select button in the top right of the screen then tapping and dragging across your chosen images. You can share the selected images, move them to another album or delete them. You can also hide selected images by tapping Share > Hide.

Wifi Assist

Anyone who is used to living in a house or working in a building with unreliable wifi will be overjoyed with this feature. Wifi Assist allows your iPhone to automatically juggle between a mobile data connection and wifi, depending on which one has the fastest connection at any given time. You can find Wifi Assist under Settings > Mobile Data.

Offline Viewing

Safari now has the ability to save a website as a PDF. Simply navigate to your chosen webpage, then tap the Share icon in the middle of the toolbar at the bottom of the display. In the second row of icons, there is now the option to Save PDF to iBooks, which save images and text ready for offline viewing.

Search Settings

Until now it hasn’t been easy to find the specific setting you need in order to accomplish certain tasks. Now, the new search settings dialog helps you find what you need – for example, type “privacy” and you’ll see all your privacy controls.

Predictive Music Intelligence

Apple as added a few predictive intelligence features to iOS 9, including getting to know your music taste. Using your preferred music app, Apple will learn your habits based on the time of day and your current location, and try to anticipate them. For example, if you plug your headphones into your iPhone every morning and launch Spotify on your way to work, your iPhone will add a quick-link to your chosen music app as soon as you attach your headphones.

Email Scribble

You can now draw, add annotations and hand draw your signature on email attachments, without leaving your mail app. Just tap and hold on an image or attachment to bring up the contextual menu. In the second row of options, there is a new option called Markup and Reply. Tap and you have a new menu that allows you to pick a color for your drawing, add text in a number of different fonts or hand draw your signature.

Low power mode

This feature is available in Settings > Battery and will reduce a whole range of settings, including ones you can’t access at anything other than a system level, in order to extend the battery life of your iOS device.

Notes App

New features include the ability to create folders, a new formatting toolbar, and support for titles, sketches, links, Maps and more. This app has become much more useful and conveniently syncs across all your Macs and devices.

iCloud Drive

Apple is progressing toward making iCloud a real file system and the new iOS 9 iCloud Drive app reflects this, enabling you to explore the files you have stashed there on your home screen. Go to Settings > iCloud > iCloud Drive and turn the ‘Show on Home Screen’ toggle on. You may also email items you have saved in iCloud Drive from the mail app.

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