Forget the Nintendo Switch – if you want to play on the go and you have an iPhone, you already have a great handheld. It's capable of running a variety of titles, from shoot-em-ups and platformers to puzzle and strategy games, which is why we consider it one of the bestbest gaming phonein.
In addition to being able to enjoy games downloaded from the App Store, there are numerous titles available to playApple Arcade, a $4.99/month subscription service. If you add Valve's Steam Link app, you can enjoy even more titles by streaming them to your iPhone from a PC or Mac. if you have oneXbox Game Pass, you can also enjoy these games - it's the best way to playFourteen days.
But how can you make sure you get the most out of your games? This is where this guide comes in. We take a look at 7 hidden tricks for gamers on the iPhone, from unlocking a lot more titles to being able to play them without touching the screen and even enjoy them on a TV. We also look at how to ensure that your already powerful iPhone realizes its full gaming potential.
Here are 7 hidden features that every iPhone gamer should take advantage of.
Note: To get the most out of the examples below, make sure you know thatHow to update an iPhoneso at least iOS 16 is running.
1. Play games in iOS Messages
As we have already explained, you have many options for playing games on your iPhone. But there are a significant number of titles that tend to get overlooked - the games that can be played through the iOS Messages app. Okay, you won't find a stack of blockbuster games here, but you will discover titles that you can play with friends (which is always better than playing alone).
to enjoy themLaunch the Messages appand eitherstart a new threadorOpen an existing one.Tap the App Store iconin the bottom toolbar andLook for the Play Games on iMessage section.Press Download.To install the game, it will appear in the bottom toolbar. SimplyTap the game iconto open it and if youstart a new game, it appears in the message thread. An invitation will then be sent to your friend when youClick Send.
Full guide: How to Play Games in iOS Messages.
2. Connect classic controllers
Although you can enjoy iOS games by tapping on the touchscreen, you can get more control with a gamepad. It is possible to connect a current gen console to an iPhone - find outHow to connect a PS5 DualSense controller to your iPhone, for example – but since iOS 16.1, Apple also allows retro pads to connect... as long as they're the modern Bluetooth versions, anyway!
It's really easy so you don't waste your playing time. OnlyLaunch the Settings appAndSelect Bluetooth. After thatPress and hold the pairing buttonon the controller andTap the controller's nameConnect.
3. Charge your iPhone faster
When you play a game, your iPhone will probably use more battery. Play for a long time and your session will probably be interrupted because you need to recharge your device. To avoid long periods of downtime without your game, recharge your batteries as soon as possible. Fortunately, there is a way to reduce the wait.
Go into the Settings appAndSet your iPhone to airplane mode. If you want to continue using your device's Wi-Fi or cellular network, leave airplane mode turned off, but scroll down andTap BatteryAfter thatActivate the power saving modeinstead of this. For the fastest possible charging, enable airplane mode and power saving mode at the same time.
Full guide:Charge your iPhone faster with these two settings
4. Screenshot on iPhone
Why should you record the screen when playing a game? To show off your skills, of course! In fact, there are other reasons as well: recording the screen during a game session is great for creating walkthrough videos for YouTube and showing how to overcome a difficult section. And it's super easy to make.
Play your gameAndOpen Control Centerby swiping down from the top right corner of the screen (or swiping up from the bottom if your iPhone doesn't have FaceID). NowTap the Screen Recording button.and wait three seconds - start the game again. To stop recording, simplyPress the red barat the top left of the screen andPress Stop. And there you go: a video of your game as you play. For more information on adding comments, see the full guide.
Full guide: How to take a screenshot on iPhone
5. Disable background refresh
Background refresh is a useful feature. This means apps keep ticking and updating when you're not using them, so you'll always see the latest information when you visit them again. Although the feature also shortens charging time, it still reduces battery life and also affects mobile data.
While you can leave background app refresh enabled for a game if you want to jump right back in and pick up where you left off, you can disable background app refresh for most apps. If you're worried about draining your battery, you can disable background refresh altogether. Whatever you decide, it's easy.
Launch the Settings appAndSelect General. After thatTap Refresh background app. You canTap Refresh background appAndChooseif you wish. Or you canUse the switchesTo prevent individual apps from updating, simply select the ones you don't want to be active in this way.
Full guide:How to disable background app refresh on iPhone
6. AirPlay games to TV
If you don't want to squint at the small screen of your iPhone and prefer to enjoy your game on the TV, use the AirPlay feature. With it, you can mirror the iPhone screen so that the actions you perform on your device are reflected on the TV.
For this to work, you'll need an Apple TV device or an AirPlay 2-compatible smart TV.Make sure your iPhone and TV are on the same WiFi network. So when the game is the gameGo to the control centerAndSelect "Screen Mirroring"..Select the deviceyou want to stream to (Apple TV or the name of your Smart TV).
7. Clear RAM
You want your games to run flawlessly and quickly. The best way to ensure that your games make the best use of the available resources on your iPhone is to clear RAM (Random Access Memory). When it starts to fill up, it can freeze or slow down, which will be a nightmare when you're about to make that crucial play. Therefore, clear the RAM from time to time, especially if you feel that the performance is not optimal.
To do this,Open the Settings appAndTap Accessibility. After thatSelect "Touch".AndTap Assistive Touch.Turn on Assistive Touch. When the iPhone is unlocked,Press the volume up buttonAndPress the volume down button. NotPress and hold the lock button. When you reach the shutdown menu,Press the circular Assistive Touch buttonto bring up a menu andLong press the Home option.Enter your password.
Full guide: How to clear RAM on iPhone
For more iPhone tutorials, check out our other guides belowHow to take a screenshot on iPhoneto freeze the magical gaming moments,How to clean iPhone speakers and improve sound qualityAnd to avoid distractions, learn how to turn on Do Not Disturb on iPhone.
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