15 Things You’re Doing to Your iPhone That Apple Experts Wouldn’t
These very common mistakes can cause some very big problems. Avoid them to keep your iPhone running smoothly for as long as possible.
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Save your smartphone!
Since iPhones are incredibly expensive, you’re probably doing everything you can to take care of yours…or are you? Proper iPhone care isn’t as intuitive as you might think. And, of course, an iPhone isn’t going to take care of itself, though many people seem to forget that. If you’re not updating, safeguarding, and cleaning your smartphone the right way on a regular basis, you might be inadvertently contributing to its untimely demise or, at the very least, not getting it to run as efficiently as possible. Here are 15 things you’re probably doing to your iPhone that Apple experts wouldn’t dream of doing—and what you should do instead. Once you’re up to date, learn these 17 hidden iPhone hacks you probably don’t know about.
Using a non-Apple charger cord
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It might be tempting to buy that less expensive, generic iPhone charger on Amazon, but resist the urge. “Using generic chargers can cause your battery to overcharge, shortening the life of the phone and the battery,” says Burton Kelso, a technology expert based in Kansas City, Missouri. If you want to extend the life of your phone, stick to an Apple charging cord instead of buying another brand. And if you want to extend the life of your charger by preventing it from breaking, check out this genius hack.
Not using a protective case
OK, we all love the way a naked iPhone looks. However, there is no better way to kill your communication device than by leaving it caseless. “If you don’t have a case for your iPhone, you’re just asking for trouble,” explains Kelso. “iPhones have shatter-resistant glass, but a good drop can render your phone useless or leave you with an expensive bill.” If you want to avoid costly repairs, he encourages keeping a case on your iPhone at all times. While a protective case is essential, these other cell phone accessories will make your life a lot easier.
Exposing your iPhone to extreme temperatures
Treat your iPhone like a small child: Don’t leave it in a super hot or cold car! Similarly, avoid leaving it out in direct sunlight or in freezing temperatures. “Extreme heat and cold weather can shorten the life of your phone because the delicate circuits in them weren’t designed to withstand extreme weather conditions,” explains Kelso. Always take your phone with you and keep it on your person when you’re in extreme weather. If your phone does overheat, here are 7 easy ways to cool it down.
Not backing up your information with iCloud
While iPhones are pretty reliable devices, Kelso points out that technology isn’t perfect and can fail at any time. He suggests ponying up and paying Apple that 99 cents a month to get your information backed up. “Backing up to iCloud will save your data in the event of device failure and will also make transitioning to a new phone easier,” he explains. Here are other time-saving and efficiency-boosting iPhone features you might not know about.
Using Windex to clean your screen
Want to ruin that perfect display on your iPhone? An easy way is using Windex or another glass cleaner to clean your screen. “The harsh chemicals in Windex can damage your screen and void the warranty,” says Kelso. Instead, use water and a microfiber cloth to remove the dirt and grime to get your iPhone back to pristine shape. Make sure you know these 14 other things you should never clean with Windex either.
Using disinfecting wipes on your phone
Nobody likes germs on their iPhone, but if you wipe it down with disinfecting wipes, you’ll ruin it. According to Kelso, this will happen even with wipes that claim to be safe for electronics. “If you want to keep a germ-free phone, invest in Phone Soap,” suggests Kelso. “This handy device uses UV rays to zap all of the germs off your phone and charges it at the same time.” These are 10 other times you should never use antibacterial wipes.
Avoiding those pesky iPhone updates
It seems as though there’s another iPhone update every other week. While it can be super annoying to download and install them, Burton says it’s crucial to do so. “Updates for your iPhone are important because they download patches that keep it safe from hackers and malicious bots,” he explains. Whenever you see an update for your iPhone, download it immediately to keep your phone safe and secure. Of course, not all notifications are important. Here are 6 ways to get rid of the annoying iPhone notifications you really don’t need.
Failing to close out your apps
The good thing about the iPhone is that you can flip from app to app with ease. However, according to Kelso, the bad thing about iPhones is that you need to close down those apps once in a while—and many people forget to do so. “When you jump from one app to another app, those apps don’t close down on your phone, they continue to run in the background which can slow down your phone,” he explains.
In order to free up memory on your phone, you need to close out of your apps occasionally. You can do this by tapping the Home button, which will show you which apps are running, and then swiping up to close the apps you’re not currently using. For iPhone 10 and above users, swipe from the bottom of the screen to show your running apps, and then swipe up to close them out. Here are a few other easy ways to free up space on your iPhone to keep it moving faster.
Not keeping your apps updated
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When you download updates to your iPhone, this only updates the operating system (OS) on your iPhone—it doesn’t update your apps. “If you don’t keep your apps updated, you run the risk of them not working with the OS you’ve updated your phone to,” Kelso explains. Visit the App Store to see which of your apps need updates, and download them. “This way, you know your phone is updated, as well as the apps you use.” And speaking of apps, be smart and be careful: Scammers are making fake versions of your favorite apps to steal your data.