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Home / News / Apple shows off the features coming to your iPhone this year in iOS 18

Apple shows off the features coming to your iPhone this year in iOS 18

Your iPhone is set to get some major new features thanks to iOS 18: AI, a new look, extra customisation options, and so much more

iOS 18

Apple just held its WWDC 2024 developers conference. At the event, the Cupertino tech giant unveiled all of its new software coming later this year. iOS 18 was the biggest announcement, alongside all of Apple’s new AI features through Apple Intelligence. The new major free update will be headed to your iPhone later this year. And you’re getting a ton of new features: AI, a new look, extra customisation options, and so much more.

You can now further customise your iPhone’s home screen – you get the ability to move app icons to wherever you want, finally. App icons can change colour, including to dark mode (or any other colour). Alongside this, you’ll find a redesigned Control Center. Icons are now rounded instead of square, and you can page through to extra options. You can create multiple groups of controls, with cards for media, home, and more. Third-party apps can add their own controls there, too. Oh, and you can now adjust the lock screen controls – so you can finally replace the flashlight and camera.

Thing get more secure in iOS 18. You’ll be able to lock are hide apps, which are protected by Face ID, Touch ID, or your password. You won’t see notifications or data from those apps. It hides information from Siri, Search, and more. You can even add them into hidden folders. If you’re a Keychain user, you can enjoy a new dedicated Passwords app. It’ll house all your iCloud Keychain passwords and 2FA verification codes.

Messages gets a number of changes. You can now schedule iMessages to send later, and add extra formatting to your messages. Text effects will let you add animations to your messages in iOS 18, with some automatically getting the treatment. You can react to apps with even more emojis than ever. Plus, in an emergency, Emergency SOS via Satellite now supports sending messages while keeping them end-to-end encrypted. In iOS 18, the Mail app will now split your messages into different groups – even across your accounts. RCS was confirmed, although we knew this is coming.

In Maps, you’ll now find National Park trail maps. Apple Pay gets a new feature that lets you tap iPhones together to pay people back. Game Mode arrives on iPhone, which minimises background activity to give your games the highest frame rate.

The Photos app gets its biggest redesign ever in iOS 18. The app has been unified into a single view. The grid lives at the top, with your library now at the bottom. A new navigation bar lets you jump back in time, and the filter button lets you narrow things down. For example, you can remove screenshots. The app is customisable, so you can move things around. For example, you can pin the collections you want the most.

iOS 18 photos app

Below the grid, you’ll see collections – which are AI-generated groups of images that Apple thinks you want to see. You can view them as a collage, and quickly share them. People & Pets will now identify groups, and you can find photos from trips grouped together. If you swipe right from the grid, a new poster view displays your best photos, recent photos, and favourites.

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Connor is a writer for Stuff, working across the magazine and the Stuff.tv website. He has been writing for around seven years now, with writing across the web and in print too. Connor has experience on most major platforms, though does hold a place in his heart for macOS, iOS/iPadOS, electric vehicles, and smartphone tech. Just like everyone else around here, he’s a fan of gadgets of all sorts! Aside from writing, Connor is involved in the startup scene. This exciting involvement puts him at the front of new and exciting tech, always on the lookout for innovating products.

Areas of expertise

Mobile, macOS, EVs, smart home