Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

Here are the most exciting new iOS 15 features Apple didn’t tell you about

Published Jul 20th, 2021 12:01PM EDT
iOS 15 Features
Image: Maria_Savenko/Adobe

If you buy through a BGR link, we may earn an affiliate commission, helping support our expert product labs.

At first glance, iOS 15 may not seem like a monumental upgrade. But now that developers have had a chance to play around with iOS 15 betas, the forthcoming iPhone update is more compelling than you might think. For whatever reason, Apple during its WWDC keynote didn’t touch on some of the cooler features built into iOS 15. And seeing as how the iOS release is now just about two months away, we’ve gone ahead and listed a few iOS 15 features that Apple didn’t explicitly mention at WWDC this past June.

Better text selection

The magnification loupe for text cursor selection was perfect as is. But Apple a few years ago replaced it with a subpar interface. Thankfully, iOS 15 will see the return of the magnification loupe. Apple notes that users will be able to  “select exactly the text you want with an improved cursor that magnifies the text you’re looking at.”

Enhanced Apple Maps features

Apple Maps is finally catching up to Google Maps in one major area: scheduling options. In iOS 15, Apple Maps users will at long last allow users to call up directions while specifying a particular departure time or desired arrival time.

Drag and drop between apps

This is a particularly nifty iOS 15 tip. The next-gen iteration of iOS will allow users to drag files between apps. For instance, users will be able to drag an image from their camera roll and drag it right into an email. This is a welcome addition to iOS and should provide mobile users with a more desktop-style user experience.

Easier iCloud backups in iOS 15

Apple in recent years has made it much easier to update to a new iPhone model. With iOS 15, it’s about to get even easier. Once this iOS 15 feature arrives, users will be able to temporarily increase their iCloud storage when transferring data to a new device. In other words, even if your iCloud storage is running low, Apple will grant you “as much storage as you need to complete a temporary backup, free of charge, for up to three weeks.”

Some welcome Safari changes

While we can’t say we’re fans of the new mobile Safari aesthetic, this is one iOS 15 tip you’ll want to be aware of. With the new iteration of mobile Safari, users will be able to “pull to refresh” whatever webpage they’re on.

Locate a stolen iPhone

This is an especially exciting iOS 15 feature to be aware of. With iOS 15, users will be able to take advantage of the “Find My Network” framework to locate a device even if it’s been erased. What’s more, Apple notes that it’s implemented security measures to make it harder for thieves to sell it.

“To help ensure that nobody is tricked into purchasing your device,” Apple says, “the Hello screen will clearly show that your device is locked, locatable, and still yours.”

More granular weather notifications

The iPhone Weather app has always been decent, but it’s long lacked features available in popular third-party apps. To that end, the Weather app in iOS 15 will be getting some nice enhancements. As a prime example, iOS 15 can send push notifications when it’s about to start raining, snowing, or hailing.

Adjust text size on an app by app basis

For the first time, iOS 15 users can adjust the size of text on a per-app basis. This might be helpful if you want a large font for your email but a standard font size when browsing the web.

Some iOS 15 features we listed may require a newer device

As we listed last week, some of iOS 15’s more advanced features will require a newer iPhone model. For example, Live Text and some enhanced Apple Maps features will require an iPhone XS or later.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.