iOS 7 hints, tips and tricks. How many of them did you already know?

Apple's iOS 7 brings hundreds of new features to iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. All these new features plus the new user interface design means there's lots to learn about iOS 7. Here, we share 50 iOS 7 tips to help you master the new mobile operating system.

Find out more about iOS 7 in our iOS 7 review.

Above: A video showing a closer look at 10 iOS 7 tips.

1. Close running apps in multitasking - how to close apps in iOS 7

One of the disadvantages of multitasking – the iPhone's ability to run apps in the background so that when you return to them they don't need to reload – is that apps can continue to use battery power and cellular data in the background. Due to this we frequently close running apps when we are finished with them.

In iOS 6 this was accomplished by double pressing the home button and revealing a dock of all of the running app at the bottom of the screen. We would then press and hold an icon until a small cross appeared in the corner of the running apps, allowing us to close each one individually.

In iOS 7 double tapping the home button brings up a completely different view that shows the screen of each running app, along with the icon for that app.

It's very useful to see the screen as that may tell you all you need to know about the app, but many have been baffled by how to close the app. We watched someone on a train as they tried to press and hold the icon expecting to see the cross appear.

To close open apps in iOS 7 you need to double tap the home button, and then drag the page previews upwards. We thought this would take longer than with iOS 6, but you can actually close two or three pages at a time this way. 

2. AirDrop

Airdrop is a new feature that will make it easy to send photos and the like to friends with iPhones or iPads.

Turn on Airdrop in Control Panel (accessed by swiping up from the bottom of your phone). You and your friend need to tap the word AirDrop and choose whether to be discoverable by just your Contacts or Everyone.

If the iCloud details of the friend you are trying to AirDrop to aren't in your contacts list you will need to add those details. Now that AirDrop is running you need to go to the photo you wanted to share, tap the Share icon (a box with an arrow pointing out of it), and select AirDrop. The friend you want to share with, and other people nearby who have AirDrop set up will show up.  

Select the image, tap the icon for that friend. Then your friend should receive an alert saying you would like to share a photo. They can tap Accept (or Decline) and the photo will be added to their Photos. When you finish using AirDrop we advise you to turn it off from Control Panel as it uses Bluetooth and leaving it on will be sure to drain your battery – you'll also need to turn off Bluetooth (which can also be done via Control Panel).

Find our more about AirDrop in our AirDrop for iOS 7 review

3. Access the spirit level

Next time you are building Ikea furniture your iPhone or iPad running iOS 7 will come in handy. There is now a spirit level hidden away on a second screen in Apple's Compass app.

Open Compass and after calibrating (now a case of turning the phone around in your hand) swipe from left to right. There are two spirit levels to choose from, place your phone flat on your MDF shelving and when the inclination is spot on the screen will turn green. Place the phone upright and you can measure the incline or make sure that wall you just plastered is completely perpendicular. 

4. Check cellular data use - restrict data hogs to WiFi

Earlier this year we started getting alerts from our mobile network around the end of the month telling us that we were nearing the end of our data allowance.

In iOS 7 managing the greedy data hogging apps is easy. Go to Settings > Cellular and scroll down to see the Cellular Data Usage (we make a habit of resetting this each month when our contract renews) and, new in iOS 7, a break down of which apps have been using cellular data. If any of those numbers raise alarm bells you can toggle the switch and stop them using cellular data. You can also assess the System Services and their data use on the next page (tap System Services).

5.  See time stamps in iMessage

Drag your finger from right to left and you will see the time that each message was sent. Handy if you want to know if someone is inviting you to lunch today or tomorrow, for example. 

6. Delete an iMessage

Another thing that doesn't seem so straightforward in iOS 7 when compared to iOS 6 is deleting individual text or iMessages. In iOS 6 you could tap the Share icon (or was it Edit) Edit button at the top of an iMessage chain, and that would give you the option to select a message to delete or clear all the messages. Now in its place you see the word Contact, which lets you call or Facetime your friend, or press the i to add to their Info.

So how do you delete those embarrassing texts now? Press and hold the offending text message and select More… Now you can choose to delete that message, or choose Delete All, which now appears as an option at the top of the screen. This won't delete the message from your friends phone. Once a message is sent, it's sent; you can't hold Apple responsible for drunken texting.

7. Delete emails

Just as with Messages, people have been wondering how to delete emails, and particularly how to delete emails. As with iOS 6 you can delete multiple emails by tapping Edit at the top of the screen and then tapping on the circles beside the emails you wish to delete and then tapping Trash. However, if it's just one email that you want to delete the gesture is slightly different to in iOS 6.

You now swipe from right to left where you now get the option to Trash or More. Tap More and you can Reply, Forward, Flag, Mark as Unread, Move to Junk, or Move Message. If you select a message that is part of a Thread you won't get the option to Reply or Forward. You need to tap on the message to access the thread to view the individual messages first.

8. Adjust text sizes and properties

When iOS 7 was first previewed back in June people were split over the fonts with some people complaining that the thinner font that was being used throughout the beta of iOS 7 at that time was too difficult to read. Apple not only responded by changing the weight of the font, so it's a little thicker, it's also made it possible for iOS 7 users to make changes to the fonts themselves. 

Access the text size properties under Settings > General > Text Size. Here you can adjust the reading size of fonts by dragging the slider. This won't make every word on your screen bigger, just the fonts within apps, but it does mean that you can change it so that the text in Messages and Mail are bigger. Not all apps support this right now, but many may in future.

9. Block someone from calling you

Back in the days of iOS 6 we wrote an article on how to block nuisance callers. It was based on a workaround because it was not possible to actually block a caller. Now in iOS 7 you can actually block a caller.

Read our How to block a nuisance caller's number article to find out how.

10. Place FaceTime audio calls

We love the idea of saving our mobile phone contract minutes by using FaceTime, but sometimes you don't want to feel like you need to give that person all your attention by appearing on camera while you are speaking to them. Now in iOS 7 it is possible to place an audio call in FaceTime (which we find also has the benefit of providing better audio quality than a mobile call does).

To place an audio FaceTIme call, tap on a contact listing and tap the telephone icon to the right of the FaceTime option. While this will save you cash if you are on WiFi, note that if you make a call this way over 3G or 4G it will come out of your data allowance. You'll also notice that everyone in your Contacts list will have a FaceTime and handset icon, even if they don't have an iPhone, iPad, or iCloud account. If you tap the handset icon you will get a notification saying "This person is not available for FaceTime Audio".

Above: A video taking a closer look at even more iOS 7 tips and tricks.

Page 1: iOS 7.1 new tips
Page 2: Multitasking, AirDrop, spirit level, cellular, time stamps, iMessage, Mail, text size, block callers, FaceTime Audio
Page 3: Burst Mode, video stills, Music, Control Centre, torch, parralax, weather, Calendar, photo sharing
Page 4: Take & edit photos, share location, notes, notifications, search, gestures, background app refresh
Page 5: Automatic app updates, Wish List, Siri, Safari
Page 6: Popular apps near you, hide your location, shared links, Voice Memos, custom vibration, keyboard tricks