How to Prevent Apps From Showing Up in Search and Siri Suggestions in iOS 11

In iOS 11 and earlier versions of iOS, Siri analyzes your app use, browsing history, emails, messages, contacts, and information from third-party apps to provide customized suggestions for searches, Look Up, News, Photos, and more.

Siri syncs this information across all of your devices in iOS 11 to provide a more personalized experience, and this information is also anonymously sent back to Apple to "make your searches more relevant."

All of this information is encrypted, but you may not want to use the feature because of privacy issues or you may not want certain apps showing up on your device. In iOS 11, Apple has expanded privacy controls so you can customize Search and Siri Suggestions to your liking.

How to Disable Siri Suggestions for Individual Apps


If you want to use Siri Suggestions but don't want certain apps to show up as suggested content, you can disable them on an app by app basis. This is the feature that's new to iOS 11 and it keeps sensitive apps from showing up in suggestions, searches, and more across your operating system.


  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Scroll down to Siri & Search and tap it.

  3. Scroll down to see a list of all of the apps that work with the feature.

  4. Select each app you don't want to show up in search and Siri suggestions.

  5. Tap the button to toggle it off.

When you disable apps, information from those apps will not show up in Search, Look Up, and Keyboard as you use your iOS device. So, for example, if I disable the Files app, content stored in my Files app will no longer come up in a search or anywhere else.

In the screenshot below, I have Files enabled for Siri and Search Suggestions on the left, and on the right, I've disabled the feature. As you can see, content from the Files app no longer shows up.


You can toggle off any of your installed apps to prevent their data from being displayed when you search, use the keyboard, and ask Siri questions.

Siri will ignore disabled files but will continue to learn your preferences from enabled apps and show content from those apps, which is probably how most people will prefer to use this feature. For a full lockdown, though, disable your apps and turn off Siri Suggestions entirely.

How to Turn Off Siri Suggestions Entirely


If you don't want to use Siri suggestions at all, there are two simple toggles for turning it off.



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Scroll down to Siri & Search and tap it.

  3. Scroll down to Siri Suggestions.

  4. Toggle off Suggestions in Search.

  5. Toggle off Suggestions in Look Up.

With these two settings toggled off Siri will not provide personalized suggestions when you search for things, and your data will not be anonymously sent to Apple to power the Siri features. Note that Siri will still bring up apps installed on your devices in search and other areas -- this just disables the feature that lets Siri learn your preferences and send data to Apple.

To keep apps from showing up entirely, you'll need to use the individual app settings, as outlined above.

Preventing Siri Suggestions From Sending Your Location to Apple


In some cases, Siri Suggestions sends the location of your device to Apple alongside your search queries so Apple can provide more relevant recommendations. You can keep your location from being sent to Apple by disabling a specific Location setting.



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Choose Privacy.

  3. Tap Location Services.

  4. Scroll down to System Services and tap it.

  5. Scroll down to Location-Based Suggestions and toggle it off.

Siri Suggestions is a useful feature so most people won't want to toggle it off completely (and it is completely private -- Apple encrypts and anonymizes all data) but being able to prevent individual apps like Safari, Mail, and others from showing up lets you customize your results for a more streamlined experience and it prevents anything you don't want to see from popping up unexpectedly.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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How to Use Instant Notes on iPad in iOS 11

If you have an iPad Pro, there's a new feature in iOS 11 that's designed to let you open up a new document in Notes just by tapping the Apple Pencil on the iPad's display.

The feature, Instant Notes, works even when the iPad is locked, so you can pick up the iPad and get right to writing without having to go through the hassle of unlocking the device, opening the Notes app, and creating a document.

Using Instant Notes



  1. On a locked iPad, press the Home button or the sleep/wake button to activate the display.

  2. Tap the Apple Pencil anywhere on the iPad's screen.

  3. Once you've tapped the Apple Pencil on the display of a locked iPad, it launches straight into the Notes app, creating a new note for you (or allowing you to edit an existing note, depending on your settings).

Because the iPad is still locked when the Instant Notes Apple Pencil gesture is used, you can't access additional notes or any other apps until you unlock the device with Touch ID. In this locked mode, you can access all of the Notes features, including the pen tools, the document scanner, the camera, and the sketch tools.


Instant Notes can only be activated from the Lock screen on the iPad. When the iPad is unlocked, you'll need to access your Notes through the app or through the new Notes option in the Control Center.

Turning Off Instant Notes


If you don't want to allow the Apple Pencil to open the Notes app, you can turn off Instant Notes in the Settings app.

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Scroll down to Notes and tap it.

  3. Choose "Access Notes from Lock Screen." The feature is toggled on by default.

  4. Select "Off."

Adjusting Instant Notes Settings


You can also adjust your Instant Notes options in the Settings app. A tap with the Apple Pencil can be set to create a new note, resume the last note created on the Lock screen, or resume the last note viewed in the Notes app.

When using the two options to resume the last note created on the Lock screen or in the Notes app, you can also set time limits. For the "Resume Last Note Created on Lock Screen" option, you can choose to automatically create a new note instead of resuming after a set time period.


For the "Resume Last Note Viewed in Notes App" option, you can set a time limit after which a passcode will be required to view the note. This makes sure someone who gets a hold of your iPad can't access sensitive data.

An Apple Pencil is required to activate Instant Notes, so it only works with iPad Pro models including the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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How to Edit Live Photos in iOS 11

Apple originally debuted Live Photos in 2015, alongside the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, marking it as a feature that enhances the smartphone's photography with pictures that move when a user performs a 3D Touch on them. With the launch of iOS 11, Live Photos can now be edited in a few useful ways, and this guide will help you make a new key photo (which shows up first in your Photo Album), as well as explain how to add new animation effects to a Live Photo.

To begin, taking a Live Photo hasn't changed with the new iPhone software: simply open your Camera app, tap the circular Live Photos icon at the top center of the screen, and take a picture.

Making a New Key Photo


  1. Open Photos.

  2. Tap the "Albums" tab, then navigate to the Live Photos album to find your image.

  3. Tap "Edit" in the top right corner of the image you select.

  4. At the bottom of the screen, scrub through your Live Photo and find the exact spot you want for a new Key Photo.

  5. Tap "Make Key Photo."

  6. Tap "Done."


Changing a Live Photo Effect


  1. Find the Live Photo you want to edit and select it.

  2. From the center of the screen, swipe up.

  3. Here you'll find three new Live Photo effects.

  4. Choose Loop, Bounce, or Long Exposure.

  5. Swipe down to see the effect in full screen.

Live Photos now have the full suite of editing options previously available to traditional still photos only, including: rotating, cropping, filters, and light and color balancing. You can also choose to mute the Live Photo (volume icon at the top left in edit mode), and automatically enhance it (wand icon at the top right in edit mode). Markup is one editing feature that does not support Live Photos, however.

After you choose a new Key Photo and find a new effect, you can replay your Live Photo like before by performing a 3D Touch action anywhere on the screen of an iPhone 6s device or later.

Related Roundup: iOS 11
Tag: Live Photos

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How to Use the New iOS 11 Document Scanner in Notes on iPad and iPhone

In iOS 11, there's a new feature in Notes that allows you to quickly scan all kinds of documents so you can keep track of everything from receipts to recipes to photos.

The Document Scanner detects the edges of a document, aligns things properly, and removes all glare and tilt so you get a clean scan every time. The new feature is available on both iPhone and iPad. Here's how to use it:

  1. Open the Notes app.

  2. Create a new note.

  3. If the keyboard is open, tap on the black "+" button located above the keyboard. On iPhone, it's in the middle, and on iPad, it's on the right side of the display.

  4. If the keyboard is closed, tap on the yellow "+" button at the bottom of the Notes app.

  5. Choose "Scan Documents."

Once the document scanning interface is open, there are a few additional steps to follow to get a clear scan.

  1. Tap on the three circles at the top to choose color, grayscale, black and white, or photo for your scan. The default option is color.

  2. Tap on the flash icon if you need to adjust the flash options. The default is auto, which will cause the flash to go off if you're in a room with low light.

  3. Focus the camera on your document, making sure the yellow box is lined up with the edges of your document.

  4. When it's aligned, press on the camera button to snap a photo.

  5. Adjust the edges of your scan to get a perfect alignment. The Notes app will automatically correct for any tilting.

  6. If the scan is to your liking, choose "Keep Scan." If you want to try again, choose "Retake."

The Document Scanner is set up to take multiple scans in a row, so once you tap "Keep Scan," it returns to the scanning interface. To get back to Notes after you've scanned all of your documents, you'll need to tap on "Save."


Your scanned document is inserted into the current note, where it can be edited. To edit, simply tap on the scan. Editing tools include adding an additional scan, cropping, changing the color, changing the orientation, and opening up the Share sheet to send it to Messages, Mail, social networks, and other apps.


Apple's document scanning tools are well engineered and impressive, producing dozens of clear, clean scans in our tests, with excellent performance on everything from photos to documents. Apple's new Notes tool rivals even well-established third-party document scanners and can easily replace them.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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How to Discreetly Disable Touch ID and Face ID on an iPhone in iOS 11

There's an Emergency SOS feature built into iOS 11 that has hidden functionality - it automatically disables Touch ID and makes it so your passcode has to be entered to unlock your iPhone.

Because it essentially shuts down the biometrics on your device, you can't be compelled by a police officer or malicious person to unlock your iPhone with a fingerprint, nor can your fingerprint be used to get into your device should you be unconscious after an emergency.

Emergency SOS is enabled by default, and there's only one step to activate it: Press on the sleep/wake (power) button of your iPhone five times in rapid succession. On the iPhone X, instead of pressing the sleep/wake button five times, you'll hold the volume up and the side button on the device at the same time instead of pressing five times.


This gesture initiates a screen that gives you the option to power the iPhone off, make a call to emergency services, or access your Medical ID.

Though not expressly stated, once your iPhone is in this emergency state, Touch ID is disabled. You will, however, have to press the cancel button to get back to the Home screen, so it's not an entirely secretive process.

If you're using Emergency SOS to disable the lock screen and don't want to set the feature up to automatically call 911 when the sleep/wake button is pressed, make sure to disable Auto Call in the Settings app. Here's how:

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Scroll down to Emergency SOS.

  3. Disable Auto Call.

With Auto Call disabled, pressing sleep/wake will bring up the aforementioned screen with the option to slide to make the emergency call. With Auto Call enabled, emergency services are called automatically when the sleep/wake button is pressed five times, following a five second countdown timer.

It's best to leave Auto Call on if you want to be able to get in touch with emergency services immediately should you be in danger.

While this feature was likely built to keep your iPhone secure in a situation where you might be incapacitated, it can also prevent authority figures from forcing you to unlock your device.

This is notable because there have been legal rulings where a defendant has been compelled to provide a fingerprint, but not a passcode. Most people will never need to disable Touch ID, but it's worth knowing the option is there should there be a situation where it is necessary.

Related Roundup: iOS 11
Tags: Touch ID, Face ID

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How to Use the iPad’s New Flick Keyboard in iOS 11

The QuickType keyboard on the iPad has been updated in iOS 11 to introduce a super handy new Flick feature designed to let you enter numbers and symbols without the shift key.

When you upgrade to iOS 11 and take a look at the keyboard on the iPad, you'll notice that all of the keys now display letters and number/symbols. A tap lets you enter the main letter on the keyboard, while a flick lets you enter the secondary symbol or number. Here's how to use it:

  1. Bring up the iPad's keyboard, either in an app or using the search feature.

  2. Tap on a key if you want to enter the standard letter or symbol.

  3. To enter the "flick" symbol, touch a key and then pull downwards.

  4. As you pull down, the symbol will replace the letter on the keyboard and it'll be entered into the text field.

Typing symbols and numbers this way is simple, intuitive, and a lot faster than taking the time to use the shift key. With this keyboard, you can still access the special characters and accent marks by holding down on a key.

Turning Off the Flick Key Option



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap "General."

  3. Select the "Keyboard" option.

  4. Toggle off "Enable Key Flicks."

Compatibility


The new key flicking feature is available for almost all iPads that are able to run iOS 11, with the exception of the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. With the larger iPad Pro model, you won't be able to use key flicks. It is, however, available on all other iPad Pro models, the iPad Air and later, the iPad mini 2 and later, and the 5th generation iPad.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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How to Hide Text Previews for Every App Notification on iOS 11’s Lock Screen

iOS 11 has introduced a simple blanket solution for those who want to hide text previews for all of their apps at one time, bringing about a quick remedy for anyone concerned about privacy on iPhone and iPad. In previous iterations of iOS, you could only toggle the "Show Preview" notification setting on or off for select apps, and the feature was largely exclusive to a few of Apple's own first-party apps, like Messages.

With iOS 11, that option has extended to individual third-party apps, and Apple has now introduced an overarching "Show Previews" toggle for all apps installed on your iOS device.

Hiding Text Previews for All Apps on the iOS Lock Screen



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap "Notifications."

  3. Tap "Show Previews."

  4. Tap "When Unlocked."
With this setting turned on, every app that you have notifications enabled for will appear on the Lock Screen, but without the actual content of the notification displayed. You can quickly make that content appear with a simple press (but not tap) of your finger on Home Button to activate Touch ID, unlocking your device and confirming it's you who wants to read the various messages.

If you choose "Never" in the same area of Show Preview settings, these notification previews won't show notification content even when the iPhone or iPad is unlocked.

Preview notifications hidden (left), and then shown after the iPhone is unlocked (right)

The same options are also available for each individual app, allowing for more granular control over your notification privacy settings in iOS 11. If you don't want the same setting for all of your apps, visit Settings > Notifications > scroll to the desired app > and then scroll to the bottom of the app's notification page to find Show Preview settings for that specific app.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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How to Sign Up for iCloud Family Storage Plans in iOS 11

Apple's Family Sharing feature allows you to share music, movies, apps, photos, and more with family members, and in iOS 11, Family Sharing extends to Apple's iCloud Storage plans.

When you purchase a 200GB or 2TB iCloud Storage plan, all members of your family can share the storage space. Depending on how many family members you have, family plans offer more storage at a better price than individual plans.

For example, a 50GB storage plan is priced at $0.99 per person. For two people, the $2.99 200GB plan offers each person an additional 50GB of storage for only $1 more.

How to Upgrade to a Family iCloud Storage Plan



  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap on your Apple ID profile at the top of the app.

  3. Choose "Family Sharing," the sixth option in the list.

  4. Tap on "iCloud Storage" to bring up a notice about the new Family Sharing options.

  5. Click "Continue" to choose a plan.

  6. Pick a 200GB or 2TB plan.

You can also access the plan settings through the standard iCloud Storage menu in the Settings app, accessible by going to iCloud > Manage Storage after tapping on your profile.

How to Stop Sharing iCloud Storage With Family


You can sign up for a 2TB or 200GB storage plan and keep family members from accessing your storage space. Here's how:

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap on your Apple ID profile.

  3. Choose "Family Sharing."

  4. Choose "iCloud Storage."

  5. Tap on "Stop Sharing With Family."

How to Downgrade iCloud Storage


If you want to go back to a cheaper iCloud Storage option, downgrading is as simple as choosing a new plan. New rates won't kick in until the next billing period.

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap on your Apple ID profile.

  3. Choose "iCloud."

  4. Tap on "Manage Storage."

  5. Choose "Change" under the iCloud Storage option.

  6. Select a 5GB or 50GB plan to downgrade.

It's important to note that there's no way to allocate how much storage each person gets when using one of Apple's new iCloud Storage plans for families, so it's not always an even split. If a family member is hogging too much space, that's a problem that will need to be worked out offline. You can see how much storage each family member is using by going to profile > Family Sharing > iCloud Storage.


When you choose a 200GB or 2TB storage plan and opt in to Family Sharing, family members who are on the free 5GB plan will be upgraded automatically and will begin using the family storage plan.

Family members who already have a paid plan will need to opt in to the family storage plan to transfer over from their own plans. If they want to have separate storage, your family members can continue to pay for their own plans and choose not to opt into the family plan.

To let your family know that you've signed up for a family iCloud plan, Apple offers an automatic iMessage alert that can be sent out to family members that lets them easily switch over to the family plan.

Related Roundup: iOS 11
Tag: iCloud

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How to Use Automatic Setup in iOS 11 to Get Your New iPhone 8 Up and Running Quick

iOS 11 includes a new "Automatic Setup" feature, which is aimed at making it quicker to get a new device ready to use right out of the box. Automatic Setup streamlines the setup process for new iPhones and iPads, transferring over preferences, Apple ID and Wi-Fi info, preferred settings, and iCloud Keychain passwords.

Automatic Setup is not the same as restoring from an iCloud backup and it does not offer full device-to-device content transfer. After transferring settings using Automatic Setup, you will still need to transfer over app data by restoring from a backup, a step available after Automatic Setup is complete.


When you buy a new device, Automatic Setup will pop up automatically, but there are some steps to follow to get everything transferred over.

  1. Power on your new device.

  2. After choosing your language, you'll see a "Set Up Your iPhone (or iPad)" prompt.

  3. When this appears, place your existing iOS device near the new device to initiate Automatic Setup.

  4. Your existing device will show a pop up letting you know you can use Automatic Setup. Tap "Continue" to start.

  5. An Apple Watch-style pairing image will appear on the new device, and you'll be instructed to scan it with the camera on your existing device.

  6. In an area with decent lighting, hold the existing device's camera over the image to pair.

  7. Enter the passcode from your existing device on the new device.

  8. From there, all of your data starts transferring over to the new device.


After Automatic Setup, you'll need to go through the Touch ID, Siri, and Wallet setup processes, but your other information is synced over. An "Express Settings" feature further speeds up new device activation, automatically enabling Find My iPhone, location services, and analytics. If you don't want these options enabled, tap on "Customize Settings" to change them.

At this point, you can restore all of your apps and app data from an iCloud backup, or set a device up as new. You will need to use the iCloud backup step for a full content transfer from your old device to your new device as Automatic Setup is only for settings and bypassing some of the setup steps that can take several minutes.

To use Automatic Setup, both of the devices involved need to be running the iOS 11 update, so it's perfect for customers who are receiving an iPhone 8 or 8 Plus and have already upgraded their previous-generation devices to iOS 11.

Related Roundup: iOS 11
Tag: Automatic Setup

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How to Use Instant Markup to Quickly Edit Screenshots in iOS 11

When you take a screenshot in iOS 11, there's a new feature that's designed to let you open it right up and edit it with Apple's Markup tools.

Using the screenshot editing feature, you can capture what's on the screen of your iPad or iPhone and then add text, crop, highlight specific areas, and more.

Using Instant Markup



  1. Press the Home button and the sleep/wake button simultaneously to capture a screenshot.

  2. A preview of the screenshot will pop up in the lower left of the display. Tap it to open up the Instant Markup interface. You'll have about five seconds before it disappears.

  3. Use a finger to adjust the blue outline if you want to crop your image.

  4. Choose a pen/marker/pencil and a color and then draw with a finger or the Apple Pencil (on iPad Pro) to edit your screenshot.

If you take multiple screenshots at once, they'll all be displayed in Instant Markup and you can swipe between them.

There are all kinds of tools in Instant Markup, including a pen, pencil, highlighter, eraser, drop shadow tool, crop, multiple pen colors, and undo/redo.


To access even more tools, tap on the "+" button. This gives you access to a text entry field, a signature tool to add a signature to a screenshot, a magnifier tool, and various shapes.

Saving, Sharing, or Deleting an Edited Screenshot


When you're done editing your screenshot, you can save it to photos, delete it, or share it.

  1. To save a photo or delete it, tap the "Done" button in the upper left of the iPad's display and then choose the appropriate option.

  2. To share, tap on the Share Sheet icon at the upper right of the display, which will pop up icons to share the screenshot in an iMessage, email, or social network.

  3. The Share Sheet also includes options to save the screenshot to the Files app, add it to the Photos app, and more.

Instant Markup is a feature that's present on the iPhone and the iPad in iOS 11. There is no way to turn it off at the current time, so if you dislike those little screenshot popups, the only option is to wait the few seconds for them to disappear or swipe them away to the left of the display.

Related Roundup: iOS 11

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