Apple’s iOS 9.3.1 can be seen as a band-aid for the purpose of fixing issues users were facing with iOS 9.3. The release was successful, and it comes with a great secret feature as well that allows users to run Night Shift and Low Power Mode simultaneously.
A trick to run two modes simultaneously
9to5 Mac was the first to notice this feature, which requires the user to follow a particular combination. Night Shift is a blue light filter which aids sleep and was the highest profile addition the company made to iOS 9.3. It is common sense to use it with Low Power Mode because users are most likely to use Night Shift at the end of the day when the battery is most likely to be low. By default, running one disables the other, but it can be fixed by following a few steps.
First, enable Low Power Mode from the battery option under Settings. After this, the user must start Siri and say “Enable Night Shift,” to which Siri will reply, “In order to turn on Night Shift, I’ll have to turn off Low Power Mode. Shall I continue?”
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The user will have to reply “Yes” and press the sleep button, after which they will hear Siri’s confirmation beep. Next, they must unlock the iPhone, and then they will be able to see both Night shift and Low Power Mode enabled simultaneously, provided that all the previous steps have been correctly followed.
Intentional or a bug from Apple?
This trick comes with a quirk. The user will find Night Shift grayed out in both Settings and the Control Center afterwards, but this does not matter as they will still be able to manually switch off Night Shift and Low Power mode as normal.
As per the report, iOS 9.3.1 closed a previous workaround to enable both modes simultaneously. With iOS 9.3, a user just had to ask Siri to enable one while running the other, but iOS 9.3.1 added one extra step.
It is not known why Apple is interested in separating two modes that should complement each other. It may be that Night Shift has surprisingly heavy demands, making it incompatible with Low Power Mode, but that remains speculation for now. This secret feature may not be something Apple created by design, but rather, it appears to be more of a handy bug.