How to use iOS 11’s new Automatic Setup

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automatic setup
In iOS 11, you won't need to remember anything when you get a new iPhone.
Photo: Cult of Mac/Apple

Setting up a new iOS device is pretty easy, but it’s about to get even easier thanks to iOS 11’s new Automatic Setup feature, which lets you hold your old device near your new one to transfer across essential info.

All you need to set up a new iOS device are your iCloud login details, and the password for your WiFi network. But even that can be a bit of a pain, especially if you use a super-secure passwords that you store in something like 1Password. In order to get to your passwords, you need to install 1Password. But in order to install 1Password, you need to input your iCloud ID and your WiFi login. Automatic Setup will put an end to that.

Find and delete storage-hogging iMessage chats in iOS 11

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iMessage storage
iMessage gets a bunch of new space-saving features in iOS 11 beta.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Maybe, if you opt for one of the new 512GB iPads, you won’t have to worry about storage space. But for everyone else, iOS 11 has you covered. Now, under a new section in settings, you can whittle down the storage used by the iMessage app, weeding out old conversations, revealing oversized attachments, and even check to see which conversations are taking up the most space.

Let’s see how to use it.

Everything you need to know about the new Files app on iOS 11

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files app ios11
Files is like the Finder for iOS 11.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Files is the new Finder app for iOS 11, and it’s already about a million times better than the basic file-picker it replaces — iCloud Drive. Files is a central place from which to access all the files on your iDevice, and in iCloud. You can find, organize, open, and delete all the files on your device, in iCloud, and on 3rd-party storage services like Dropbox. And because this is iOS 11, Files supports all the fancy new multitasking features like drag-and-drop.

So, lets take a look at what it can do:

How to identify 32-bit apps that won’t work in iOS 11

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32-bit apps
32-bit apps won't launch on iOS 11. Here's how to get a list of the ones on your device.
Photo: Cult of Mac

iOS 11 won’t run any 32-bit apps. Most of the time, that won’t make any difference — most apps you use every day were updated to be 64-bit a long time ago. But we all have a few of those old apps laying around that haven’t been updated in years. Perhaps they’re still useful for you, or maybe Apple kicked the app out of the App Store and there’s no modern alternative?

Under iOS 11, those apps will no longer work. You may as well just delete them. And to help, there’s a spot in the Setting app where you can see a list of all those incompatible apps.

iOS 11 video player gets a serious upgrade

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iOS 11 video player
The iOS 11 video player even supports YouTube's auto-generated captions, not that you'll ever want to use them.
Photo: Cult of Mac

iOS 11 has gotten a big upgrade to its QuickView video player, the one that takes care of videos playing in apps, on web sites, and so on. Previously you only got a basic video scrubber, a volume slider, and a play button. Now, you can not only access subtitles and AirPlay right from the video screen, but you can control pretty much everything in the new iOS 11 video player with a keyboard.

How To always open a website in Persistent Reader View in iOS 11

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persistent reader view compare
Clean up the busiest sites automatically with the new Persistent Reader View.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Do you have any websites you read regularly in Reader view? Maybe they’re covered in popovers that keep distracting you? Or perhaps the design hurts your sensitive eyes, or the otherwise smart author insists on using Comic Sans for the text body? Well, there’s good news: Safari on iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra now let you activate Persistent Reader View, which automatically switches the clean Reader view in as the page loads.

How to manipulate iOS text using the keyboard

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manipulate text
Keep your hands on the keyboard with these iOS text-wrangling tips.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Because iOS is a variant of macOS, it has a lot in common with the Mac. One of the things that iOS shares with the Mac is the keyboard. Not the on-screen keyboard, but the real, physical, clackety-buttoned keyboard. Thanks to its OS X heritage, the iPad (and iPhone) can use all the same keyboard tricks to manipulate text that Mac users have been enjoying for years.

It even carries some, but not all, of the shortcuts over from the ancient text editor Emacs. What? Don’t worry, it’s not too dorky.

Use AudioShare to slice, dice, zip, and share audio files on iOS

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audioshare
If there was a music app that was like a kind of military tool from a neutral European country, then AudioShare would be it.
Photo: Cult of Mac

There’s no iTunes for iOS. Thank God, some may say — after all, iTunes on the desktop is Apple’s Office, a bloated, do-it-all app that does nothing well, and is impossible to kill. But this also means that there’s no good way to save and wrangle music files on iOS — not from Apple at least. Which is where Kymatica’s AudioShare comes in. AudioShare is really a tool for musicians and other folks who work with sound, but it is so useful, and so easy to use, that everyone should have it on their iPhone and iPad to deal with audio files of all kinds.

How to quickly search settings in iOS

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iOS search settings
You'll be surprised at the how many settings are unearthed by a simple search.
Photo: Cult of Mac

The iOS Settings app is more like a chaotic junk drawer that a neatly-organized filing cabinet. Back when the iPhone launched, it was tidy, with only a few items, all methodically arranged. Then, as more and more features were added to iOS, their settings were tossed in there like you toss spare keys into that kitchen drawer with the rubber bands and spare fuses. Unlike a real junk drawer, though, which will slice your fingers with hidden tools and pieces of broken teacup if you rummage too hard, the Settings app has a way to ignore the detritus and get straight to the setting you want: Search settings. This feature is essential, but very few of the folks I asked about it this week even knew it existed. This how-to is for them, and for anyone else who hates changing settings.