The iOS 10 update came with a lot of crazy new features (especially in iMessage) and therefore a lot of confusion. (Raise your hand if you’ve accidentally sent someone a message with confetti without even realizing how you did it?)

As with most Apple updates, the new features are actually quite simple – they just take a little bit of getting used to, because quite a few of them look different than iOS 9. We’ve dissected some of our favorite features and have written instructions here on how to use them to help you get the most out of your iPhone.

Collaborate on Notes

This is a pretty cool and useful feature – users can now collaborate on notes, the way you would on a Google Doc. So couples and roommates can create shareable grocery lists, people working on projects together can collaborate right within their phones, etc.


Integrate Apps with the CallKit

iOS 10 allows users the option to download apps that sync with the call function in the phone. For example, Hiya is a free app that shows a red symbol on the call screen if a number has previously been reported as spam. (So you don’t have to pick up the phone just to listen to a robot tell you you’ve won another cruise to the Bahamas.) PrivacyCaller does the same thing, but it also reports the spam callers to the FTC automatically.

Get Fancy With Your Photos

In the new iOS, your phone will automatically pull together photos from specific events and dates and call them “Memories.” So you can show off a slideshow of your latest trip without having to organize or arrange the photos yourself. You can also search within your photos, for people (if you set up their names and faces) or places (which your phone will recognize automatically).


Let Your Calendar Schedule Itself

The iOS 10 calendar has a setting called “Events Found in Apps.” When you turn this on, your calendar can pull events it finds scheduled in your email and messages apps.

You can also toggle a new option on your calendar that prompts it to let you know when you should leave the house for a scheduled event, based on traffic patterns and your location.


Use Siri To Call an Uber

Yup, the Uber app now works with Siri. The command “Call an Uber” will prompt her to ask what type of ride you’d like.

Use iMessages To Do Any Number of Things

iMessage Apps

iOS 10 comes equipped with apps that work within iMessage. The iMessage app store contains everything from games (like Words With Friends) to stickers you can send in your texts to money-transfer apps.

Bubble and Screen Effects

You can spice up your messages by sending them with lasers and confetti, or giving them a “slam” effect. Hold down the blue “send” arrow and browse all of the options.

You can also “react” to a message by pressing on it and responding with a heart, thumbs up, question mark, exclamation point, or thumbs down. Apple calls it “Tapback.”


Digital Touch

Digital touch allows you to send effects to your friends, as well. Depending on how you swipe or tap the screen, you can send things like “kisses,” “fireballs,” and other fun screen patterns.

Handwritten Messages

iMessage allows you to flip your screen sideways and handwrite messages to your friends. It can make things feel a bit more personal (and it can be fun to doodle).

Use Night Shift to Sleep Better

Night shift is an awesome new feature that turns down the brightness and the blue tint of your phone screen around bedtime. Research has shown that blue light from screens imitates daylight and confuses our circadian rhythms, causing us to sleep more poorly when we use our devices before bed. Night shift takes steps to correct that.

You can schedule it to automatically engage when you usually go to sleep and turn off when you usually wake up.

There are a decent number of other features in iOS 10 that changed the music playback, Safari browsing, and other app experiences. What’s the best feature you’ve discovered in iOS 10?