How to . . . fix Apple’s iOS 10’s annoying features

Don’t want to handwrite messages? Or have your screen wake by accident? No problem

  Apple’s latest mobile operating system isn’t perfect. Photograph: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

Apple’s latest mobile operating system isn’t perfect. Photograph: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg


There are lots of things to love about iOS 10, but Apple’s latest mobile operating system isn’t perfect. The recently released update 10.1.1 addressed a few bugs, but what about the “features” you’d really rather go without?

Lift-to-wake feature

It seems like a good idea in theory: lift your iPhone and the screen automatically wakes. You don’t have to touch it or press a button, and you can see all your notifications at a glance. In practice? Pass your hand near your iPhone and it wakes the screen, even if you weren’t intending to do so.

To turn it off, go to Settings>Display & Brightness and deselect Raise to wake.

Reply to messages from locked screen

Another feature that’s great in theory but not in practice. While it’s nice to be able to reply to text messages without unlocking your phone, the problem arises when your phone isn’t in your control.

To disable this feature, go to Settings>Touch ID & Passcode and enter your passcode. Then scroll down to Reply with Message and toggle it to off.

Handwriting in Messages

Each time you open Messages and turn it to landscape mode, the screen automatically changes to handwriting mode. While some people will welcome the chance to handwrite their personal messages to friends and family, there’s a reason typed messages are popular – they’re easier to read for a start.

To kill off the handwriting mode as default, open Messages, turn your phone to landscape mode and press the keyboard icon. Every time you open Messages now, it will stay in keyboard mode. If you change your mind, you can always tap the handwriting icon when you enter portrait mode.


If you are using Apple’s Mail app, there are a few things you can do to make it easier to manage. First of all, make sure your default view is the newest message on top. It will save you hours of fruitless scrolling. To do this, got to Settings>Mail and scroll down to Threading. Select ‘Most recent message on top’.

Second, make sure you aren’t showing complete threads. This will collapse older messages within an email thread so you aren’t working your way through pages of messages you’ve already read. Again, this can be found in Settings>Mail>Threading, and uncheck Complete threads.

Press Home to unlock

If you use Touch ID, one of the most irritating changes in iOS 10 was having to press the home button even after your fingerprint unlocked the device. It added an extra step to what was a relatively smooth procedure. It’s easily fixed though. Go to Settings>General>Accessibility>Home button. Select rest finger to open. Your phone will now open once Touch ID has verified your fingerprint.