iOS 15 Tidbits: Per-App Settings, Notification Summaries, New Calendar Widget, and More

We've highlighted several new features coming in iOS 15, like the return of the text cursor magnifier and the ability to rearrange Home Screen pages, but additional tidbits continue to surface that we think readers will find noteworthy.

iOS 15 General Feature Blue

Per-App Accessibility Settings

Last week, we highlighted a new Control Center option that lets you set the text size for individual apps. But per-app accessibility settings don't end there.

settings
Individual app customizations also include adjustments to bold text, button shapes, toggle switches, transparency, contrast, color, motion, and more, allowing you to effectively remodel many app elements that you find particularly burdensome to use.

Small Calendar Month Widget

Annoyingly for many iOS 14 users, the square Calendar widget only shows the current day and any events, rather than the full calendar month, which can only be displayed in the larger 2x4 widget.

calendar

New 2x2 Calendar widget (left) versus original 2x2 widget

This always felt like a poor use of widget space, but fortunately ‌iOS 15‌ adds a new 2x2 widget that displays the full calendar month with the current day highlighted. In another related change, you can now make a calendar a custom color using the color picker, in addition to the seven default color options that the Calendar app offers.

Improved Siri Suggestions

Apple continues to work hard to improve Siri in ‌iOS 15‌, not only in terms of voice requests, which now get processed on your device instead of being sent to the cloud, but also when it comes to ‌Siri‌ suggestions, as evidenced by the following suggestion spotted by a Redditor.

siri suggestion birthday ios 15
The user had simply wished someone in their contacts a happy birthday during a Messages conversation, which resulted in the notification "‌Siri‌ Found a Birthday" and the option to update that contact card with their birth date. This is similar to the existing suggestion to add someone to your contacts if they say their name or have Share Name and Photo turned on, but adds another layer of contextual awareness.

Custom Frequency of Notification Summaries

In ‌iOS 15‌, notifications have been redesigned, and Apple now also includes a Notification Summary option that uses on-device machine learning to automatically populate notifications based on priority in a new lock screen design.

notification summary ios 15
You can select which apps are included in these summaries, which are delivered to your lock screen at a time of your choosing. For example, you could opt to have them delivered during your lunch break, after dinner, or last thing before bedtime. If that sounds a little too infrequent, no problem – you can have up to 12 individual notification summaries within a 24-hour period, which could be timed hourly over the course of a working day, for instance.

Along with macOS Monterey and iPad ‌iOS 15‌, ‌iOS 15‌ is currently in developer beta with a public beta due next month and an official release sometime in the fall.

Related Roundups: iOS 15, iPadOS 15
Related Forum: iOS 15

Top Rated Comments

Dekema2 Avatar
17 weeks ago
Would be nice if there was an option to "Disable Opening in App" for webpages and their corresponding apps.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gwhizkids Avatar
17 weeks ago
I know these changes are not the red meat many were looking for, but in many ways they make the iPhone a more functional, more usable product.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
motm95 Avatar
17 weeks ago
Please, Apple, let us finally put icons or widgets wherever we want without being forced into the grid layout.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gwhizkids Avatar
17 weeks ago
I switched to Android at the beginning of the year after being on the iPhone since the first one in 2007. I was blown away at how much better the Android OS is.

I had no idea what I was missing with interactive widgets. I can't belive Apple hasn't given this to their users yet.

Also, the standard grid layout with iOS always annoyed me because there is so much wasted space on the iPhone screen. Android allowed me to add a row and a column, easy peasy. So much better!

Those are two simple things but they make my phone usage much, much better. I couldn't possibly go back to iOS now that I know what I've been missing. Not being restricted to only the apps Apple deems suitable for me is another huge advantage, the camera on the S21 ultra is insane also.

iOS 15 doesn't have a single thing in it that would woo me back. Even my wife is starting to hate her iPhone now. I keep laughing saying the screen looks like a child's toy.
Thank you for sharing your happiness with us. We wish you well. It is good to find something you like.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Wando64 Avatar
17 weeks ago

I switched to Android at the beginning of the year after being on the iPhone since the first one in 2007. I was blown away at how much better the Android OS is.

I had no idea what I was missing with interactive widgets. I can't belive Apple hasn't given this to their users yet.

Also, the standard grid layout with iOS always annoyed me because there is so much wasted space on the iPhone screen. Android allowed me to add a row and a column, easy peasy. So much better!

Those are two simple things but they make my phone usage much, much better. I couldn't possibly go back to iOS now that I know what I've been missing. Not being restricted to only the apps Apple deems suitable for me is another huge advantage, the camera on the S21 ultra is insane also.

iOS 15 doesn't have a single thing in it that would woo me back. Even my wife is starting to hate her iPhone now. I keep laughing saying the screen looks like a child's toy.
That’s right. As long as it looks pretty, who cares about security, privacy and seamless ecosystem integration.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Attirex Avatar
17 weeks ago
If you need to use that functionality to manage that many daily notifications, you have larger issues in your life to deal with. Unless you're the Most Important Person on Earth or a constantly texting teenager, I don't get it.

In fact, a lot of iOS 15 features seem targeted towards insane use cases where someone gets 500,000 notifications every day including 14,000 phone calls, 60,000 text messages, 80,000 calendar reminders, and manages 40,000 notes. Who are these people? Can I be you? Or maybe I don't want to be....hm.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

ios 14 widgets

Restoring Some iPad 9, iPad mini 6, and Some iPhone 13 Models From Backup Can Cause Widgets to Reset

Thursday September 23, 2021 7:09 pm PDT by
Apple today said that it has discovered an issue that can cause widgets to revert to their default settings after restoring an iPhone or an iPad from backup. The bug affects "a limited number" of iPhone 13, iPhone 13 mini, iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13 Pro Max, iPad 9, and iPad mini 6 devices. Apple says that those who run into this issue will need to customize their widgets again. Customizing ...
app store widget

iOS 15 Can Automatically Add and Remove Widgets to a Smart Stack

Tuesday June 8, 2021 8:16 am PDT by
On iOS 14, Smart Stacks for widgets allow users to stack different widgets on top of each other and then allow iOS to display the most relevant widget depending on the time of day, location, and more. On iOS 15, Apple is taking Smart Stacks even further with Widget Suggestions, which automatically add and remove widgets in a Smart Stack depending on context. For example, if a user has an...
3rd party widgets feature 1

iOS 15 Lets Developers Hide Sensitive Information in Widgets on the Lock Screen Until iPhone Is Unlocked

Thursday June 10, 2021 8:23 am PDT by
On iOS and iPadOS 15, Apple is adding new functionality to WidgetKit, introduced last year, that will allow developers to classify information deemed as sensitive in their widgets, meaning that specific information will only become viewable on the lock screen when the user unlocks their device. iOS 14 introduced completely redesigned widgets for the lock screen and Home Screen. While there...
app store widget

iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 Gain New App Store, Find My, Contacts, Sleep, Game Center and Mail Widgets

Monday June 7, 2021 1:43 pm PDT by
The iOS and iPadOS 15 updates that were released today introduce several expanded widget options, which can be used on the Home Screen or in the Today section of the Notification Center on the iPhone and iPad. Apple has created several new widgets for Apple products and services, as listed below: Find My - Track your friends and personal items from the Home Screen. Contacts -...
google iphone home screen

Google Basically Wants Your iPhone 13 Home Screen to Look Like Android

Tuesday September 28, 2021 5:59 am PDT by
In a new blog post titled "Bring the best of Google to your iPhone," Google is on an endeavor to convince new iPhone 13 users to transform their ‌device’s home screen to look like Android. The blog post, written by Google's director for the iOS platform, features screenshots of an iPhone 13 home screen filled with Google apps and widgets. The post implies that customers should possibly...
do not disturb feature removed

iOS 15 Removes Do Not Disturb Option That Silenced Notifications Only When iPhone Was Locked

Tuesday September 21, 2021 1:22 pm PDT by
With iOS 15, Apple expanded the Do Not Disturb feature from iOS 14 into a full Focus Mode option that's designed to allow users to set up different scenarios to manage their incoming notifications. Focus Mode is handy because it lets you decide exactly what alerts and apps you want to see at home, while at work, when sleeping, when exercising, and in other situations, but as Reddit users...
apple tv keyboard notification iphone tight

iOS 15 Doesn't Offer a Way to Disable Apple TV Keyboard Notifications

Wednesday September 29, 2021 11:56 am PDT by
iOS 15 was released last week with a long list of new features, but there is one change that is proving to be an annoyance to users. On the Apple TV, users who prefer not to input text using the Siri Remote can use a nearby iPhone or iPad to type. Whenever a text field appears on the Apple TV, a notification appears on the iPhone or iPad, and after tapping the notification, users can use the ...
Google Widgets Custom Backgrounds Feature 2

Google Working on Customizable Widgets With Custom Background and Themes

Monday June 28, 2021 6:43 am PDT by
Google introduced widgets for its iOS and iPadOS app following iOS 14 last fall. Now, Google is looking to give users more creative freedom with their widgets, allowing users to add custom backgrounds and themes. Discovered by MacRumors contributor Steve Moser, code within the Google Search app for iPhone and iPad says that users will be able to "Choose a theme to add color, Google Earth...
google maps ios widgets

Google Maps Gains Home Screen Widgets on iPhone

Wednesday July 28, 2021 9:40 am PDT by
Google today updated its Google Maps app for the iPhone to add support for widgets that can be added both to the Today View and the Home Screen. There are two separate widget options. The first allows users to check traffic conditions, store opening times, restaurant reviews, and more for a given location, while the second is designed to let users find places that are nearby like...
iOS 15 icon on phone

Apple Seeds iOS and iPadOS 15 Release Candidates to Developers

Tuesday September 14, 2021 11:48 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the release candidate versions of iOS and iPadOS 15 to developers for testing purposes, with the updates coming two weeks after Apple released the eighth betas. Registered developers can download the profile for the iOS and iPadOS betas from the Apple Developer Center, and once the profile is installed, beta updates will be available over the air. iOS 15 is a major...