New Live Photo and iMessage effects, Siri translations, and music sharing ranks as some of the most exciting features in Apple's latest operating system, iOS 11. However, there's one major update that's less flashy, but every bit as useful: Your Control Center. With iOS 11, Apple is finally giving users the power to personalize the shortcut menu with the tools and controls you use most.
When you swipe up from the bottom of the screen, you'll see that Apple has included 10 default controls: Airplane Mode, Cellular Data, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Audio, Screen Brightness, Sound, Do Not Disturb, Rotation Lock (this keeps your screen from changing its orientation when you move your phone), Screen Mirroring, Camera, Timer, Flashlight, and Calculator. These are the same ones that appeared on your Control Center in iOS 10. However, unlike iOS 10, iOS 11 gives you the power to remove four of those defaults: Camera, Timer, Flashlight, and Calculator.
To do so, go to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls. When determining what stays and what goes, consider which tools you use on a more regular basis. I, for example, rarely use the Timer but always find myself using the Calculator.
There are also 13 other controls you have the option of adding through your Settings. Some of these — such as Alarm and Notes — are pretty universal. Others may be more specifically suited to you. For example, if you own an Apple TV, for example, you may want to add the Apple TV Remote to your Control Center so you can easily switch from one Netflix show to the next. If you own a car, it's smart to add "Do Not Disturb While Driving," another new iOS 11 tool which keeps you free from the distraction of incoming messages.
Don't take every control at face value: You can do more with some than their little icons imply. Tapping the Camera on your Control Center opens the Camera app. However, if you press and hold the Camera icon, you'll see more specific options to choose from: Take selfie, record video, record slo-mo, take portrait. With the flashlight, you'll be able to adjust the brightness; and Wallet lets you choose which of your credit cards or passes you want to use. Head here for a full list of every control with additional tools.
All in all, you have the option of having 17 apps and tools in your Control Center. However, if you're the kind of person who likes to keep your apps organized in thematic folders on your home screen, you'll probably want to be choosy about which ones deserve spots on your Control Center. Adding all 17 makes it look cluttered (see the image above if you don't believe me), and any efficiency you gained by adding a control might be diminished by the amount of time it takes you to actually find it among all the others.