iPhone Feature You Should Be Using

There is one special iPhone feature you should be using. I’m not sure about you, but there are simply too many things going on in my life right now. And when I say “at the moment,” I mean “all the time” and “indefinitely.”

When you have an unending cacophony of priorities crackling about your brain, it’s difficult to focus. But your iPhone has a useful little feature that simultaneously helps you focus and looks after your hearing.

Background Sounds, for example, is one of the best iPhone features that’s built into accessibility to help you focus and relax. Especially by providing a pleasant soundtrack to whatever activity you’re working on.

This feature appeared in a later iteration of iOS 15 last year. And it is expressly designed for folks who struggle to focus and remain calm in a noisy setting. Moreso as our understanding of neurodiversity grows.

Background Sounds can be used in two ways, one of which is much easier (and more hidden) than the other.


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Why is this an iPhone feature you should be using?

The first method gives you the most control, but it’s more difficult to find. Go to Settings and then to Accessibility. Scroll down to Audio/Visual and then select ‘Background Sounds.’

Here’s where the real fun begins. With the ability to sample a wide range of sounds to assist you to get through your next workday.

To begin, select a sound effect from the six available. We’re not sure why Apple changed the labels to make things more confusing. However, balanced noise is closely linked to white noise.

Balanced Noise is comparable to static noise in that it provides multiple frequencies at the same time to assist the brain to relax in general. Bright Noise, often known as pink noise, is brighter and can make you feel more energized.

Dark noise, like brown or red noise, is more forceful and has a lower frequency. This helps the brain engage and focus harder.

Then there’s the Ocean (my particular favorite, conveying the impression of sitting on a warm, sandy beach and watching the ever-present waters attack and withdraw from the shore), rain, and stream, all of which provide the sound of moving water in nature and give the background noise a more ‘connected’ feel.


iPhone illustration


What to do next

Once you’ve chosen your sound, you can choose whether or not you want the sound to play with media – if you want to listen to music or occasionally need to watch a video, it’s better to leave this turned off.

However, I enjoy having the sound of rain in the background while listening to a Spotify playlist because it makes me feel like I’m in a cozy hut with the rain pelting down outside. Ideally, with a hot beverage of some sort.

If you do want the sounds to play in the background, you can turn them down with media, which is a great feature that ensures they don’t interfere with your music or movie.

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