If you missed it, Apple released iOS 11 Public Beta 1 this past Monday, which means if you have a compatible iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, you can get it now. Here’s our guide on how to do that. If you have it already but haven’t looked at what it offers, here’s a breakdown of what you’re missing.

iOS 11 public beta 1 hidden features

iOS 11 Public Beta 1 features

Before you head off to find out what new goodies Apple has to offer, it’s important to remember that this is still a beta. That means the new features you are about to discover are just the tip of the iceberg. iOS 11 is nowhere close to being anything like its final release version, so features could come and go.

If you haven’t got this public beta yet, it’s advisable that you install it on a secondary device. That way, if you encounter any serious problems, you won’t end up with bricked hardware. Clicking the link in the opening paragraph will take you to all the advice you need.

So without further ado, here are the iOS 11 Public Beta 1 features that are worth checking out.

Background app refresh

If you have iOS 11 Public Beta 1 installed on your device, go to Settings >> General >> Background App Refresh. You will discover a new option to turn app refreshing in the background on or off. This includes control over apps when you are connected to Wi-Fi or other data sources. It’s thought that this is Apple’s early attempt at giving users autonomy when it comes to conserving data and battery life.

Convert anything to a PDF

When it comes to sharing, there’s a new embedded edition of iOS. You can now convert almost anything into a PDF; all you have to do is tap the button, and that’s it. Images, web pages, notes, and many other things are convertible.

Do Not Disturb While Driving

In our opinion, one of the most important features to ever be included in iOS is this one. iOS 11 can be set up so that you won’t be disturbed by messages, calls or notifications while driving. This feature is buried in the settings app, and it does need to be manually activated. However, its potential to save lives is enormous.

Don’t use Apple’s photo format

With iOS 11, Apple has introduced its own photo format. It claims that HEIF/HEVC doesn’t compromise on image quality but offers greater compression, which ultimately means that your images will take up less storage space. Now, for whatever reason, it has also embedded the option to not use the format. To do that, go to Settings >> Camera >> Formats and then switch High Efficiency to Most Compatible.

Emergency SOS

It seems as though the user is at the heart of iOS 11, as previous incarnations of the firmware haven’t been so, with some suggesting that they were simply designed to keep you confined. That certainly can’t be said about this obvious security feature. It puts protection at a user’s fingertips by calling emergency services if the power button is pressed five times.

Additionally, there is some flexibility, such as being able to input your own emergency contacts and the ability to set up a timer to prevent mistaken calls. This new feature can be reached by navigating to Settings >> Emergency SOS.

FaceTime Live Photos

Want to be able to take a live screenshot while using FaceTime? The iOS 11 Public Beta 1 makes it possible, however, it’s a hidden feature, so to find it, go to Settings >> FaceTime and switch on FaceTime Live Photos by moving the toggle. Then taking a screenshot is as simple as tapping the shutter button.

Fast access To notes

So far in the iOS 11 developer betas and now iOS 11 Public Beta 1, we’ve seen some fantastic changes to the Control Center. One such change now enables you to access your notes quickly without having to unlock your iPhone or iPad.

If you go to Settings >> Notes you can now set how long your notes will remain accessible.

Handwritten email

If you want to add a little spice to your email experience, a Long Press while using the Mail App will result in a new array of options being presented to you. One such option is to insert a drawing.

Swipe up for old notifications

Within iOS 11, there are new ways to access your notifications, like swiping from the top down to reveal a Cover Sheet. This notification area displays only the most recent notifications, but what if you need to find old notifications? Fortunately, Apple has thought of this too, so now, if you swipe upward from the middle of the screen, you will see them.

Type to Siri

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you needed to ask Siri for something, but background noise prevented it? iOS 11 Public Beta 1 is the first version of iOS to allow users to type to Siri. It means that no matter where you are, communication of one kind is possible, and answers are at your fingertips. To enable this new feature, go to Settings >> General >> Accessibility >> Siri. Then just switch Type To Siri on.

Final thoughts

So there are ten new iOS public beta 1 features. Is this list definitive? We doubt it, more hidden features will be found, and when they are, we will bring that news to you.

In the meantime, if you have any iOS 11 tips or information about features you think we’ve missed. Please use the comments section below to share them with other readers and us.