Quickly scan a QR code from inside Control Center [Pro tip]

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Add a QR code scanner to Control Center
The dedicated Code Scanner app is ready when you need it.

Control Center Pro Tips WeekWe want to help you master Control Center, one of the most powerful and underutilized features on Apple devices. Cult of Mac’s Control Center Pro Tips series will show you how to make the most of this useful toolbox on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Mac.

Need to scan a QR code in a jiffy? Add a handy code reader to Control Center on iPhone and iPad that’s quick and easy to find in just a swipe. We’ll show you how.

iOS 14.4 brings improvements to QR codes and Bluetooth audio

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iOS 14.4 debuted to the general public on Tuesday.
iOS 14.4 isn’t a substantial update, but it does include new features.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple released iOS 14.4 to the general public on Tuesday, along with the iPad equivalent. According to their developer, these allow users to scan smaller QR codes, and to classify their various Bluetooth devices so audio notifications can be routed correctly.

It also closes a security hole that hackers might have actually used to break into iPhones.

How to scan QR codes from the lock screen in iOS 12

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Knock yourself out scan qr codes
Knock yourself out.
Photo: Thomas Leuthard/Flickr CC

Ever since iOS 11, your iPhone and iPad have been able to detect a QR code in the camera frame, and pop up a banner at the top of the screen to open the link embedded within it. This is a great way to quickly extract a URL from a billboard, or from a particular nerdy lost-cat poster stapled to a utility pole.

Now, iOS 12 brings a dedicated QR-scanning shortcut that you can invoke right from your iPhone’s lock screen. Let’s see how to scan QR codes in iOS 12.

How to scan QR codes with iOS 11’s Camera app

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QR codes
Beware sketchy QR codes if you’re using iOS 11.
Photo: Thomas Leuthard/Flickr

QR codes are set to take off in a big way, thanks to a new feature included in iOS 11 that makes scanning the quirky-looking blocks easier than ever before.

Apple didn’t announce the feature during its WWDC 2017 keynote, but the new QR-scanning capability is among the many minor iOS 11 features that may prove to be a big deal. Even though QR codes have been around for nearly two decades, they haven’t been super-useful to regular consumers.

That’s about to change.

HomePod software leaks new ‘SmartCamera’ feature for iPhone

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iPhone 8 facial recognition
We could be waiting a long time for iPhone 8.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple’s HomePod might have revealed another huge new iPhone feature after developers did some more digging into the beta software for the upcoming smart speaker.

The software appears to reference an unannounced “SmartCamera” feature built into iOS 11 or the yet-to-be-released 2017 iPhone. And it could totally change the way we snap photos.

11 awesome iOS 11 features Apple didn’t bother to mention

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The best gesture in iOS 11 isn't just for iPad.
The best gesture in iOS 11 isn't just for iPad.
Photo: Apple

Developers just got an early preview of Apple’s upcoming iOS 11 update for iPhones and iPads today during the company’s WWDC 2017 keynote in San Jose.

The new update packs some huge new features that make iOS more powerful and easier-to-use than ever. Apple’s update is so jam packed that some of the best new additions didn’t even get some stage time at WWDC.