You Don’t Need These 7 Types of Apps on Your iPhone

To a large extent, the App Store is a treasure trove of useful apps that can improve your iPhone experience. However, not every app is worth downloading as some might pose security and privacy risks, while others duplicate features already on your iPhone.

This article will cover some types of app you don’t need, and how to access and use their corresponding built-in features on your iPhone instead.


7. Flashlights

Flashlight apps are one of those app types you should stop downloading on your smartphone because of the security risks. Besides, why would you want to put up with all those pesky ads when you can easily use your iPhone’s built-in flashlight?

There are several ways to access your iPhone’s built-in flashlight, including:

  • Swipe down from the top-right corner to open the Control Center and tap on the flashlight icon (if your iPhone has a Home button, swipe up from the bottom instead). To increase the intensity of the light, long-press on the icon and drag the slider upwards.
  • You can ask Siri to turn on the flashlight by saying, “Hey Siri, turn on the flashlight.”
  • You could also long-press the flashlight icon in the bottom-left corner of your Lock Screen.
  • In an emergency, the fastest option is to tap your iPhone’s back to activate your flashlight. To set it up, go to Settings > Accessibility > Touch > Back Tap. Select Double Tap or Triple Tap and then choose Flashlight from the list of options.

6. QR Code Readers

Quick response (QR) codes are barcodes that store information you can easily access by scanning them with your phone. The information stored can be for anything, such as a website link, contact information, or Wi-Fi network credentials. These handy codes save you the trouble of remembering and typing out long URLs.

Enter QR code readers: apps that allow you to scan QR codes and access their contents. You will be happy to learn that your iPhone’s camera app can already do this without downloading a third-party QR code reader.

To scan a QR code, open your iPhone’s camera app—if needed, swipe left or right to switch to the Photo mode—and point it at the code. You will see a notification in the viewfinder; tapping it will take you to the website. If your iPhone doesn’t recognize the QR code, head to Settings > Camera > Scan QR Codes and toggle on the switch.

Alternatively, you can also use the QR code reader in the Control Center. If you can’t find it, go to Settings > Control Center and look for Code Scanner under More Controls.

5. Document Scanners

Scanners help you to digitize physical documents, such as receipts, business cards, and forms. However, as valuable as they might be, you certainly won’t want to take your home or office scanner everywhere you go. On the other hand, there’s a good chance you always have your iPhone with you.

These days, there are tons of document scanner apps available on the App Store. However, you don’t need to download any of them, as your iPhone can do the job already.

To scan documents using your iPhone, open the Notes or Files app and tap on the plus (+) icon. Select the camera icon from the list of options and tap on Scan Documents. Position your iPhone camera over the document, and it will automatically scan it. You can crop it, adjust the color, and save it. You can now share the scanned copy via email or any other app installed on your iPhone.

4. Signature Apps

Virtual signatures are becoming increasingly commonplace as we move towards a paperless society, and the rise of remote work has only accelerated this trend. Besides this, printing, signing, and then scanning documents is just too much of a hassle when you can do it on your iPhone.

So, whether you want to sign a PDF or a contract, signature apps allow you to do so digitally using your phone’s touchscreen. However, if you own an iPhone, you can bypass third-party signature apps and use the built-in Markup tool instead.

To sign a document on your iPhone, open the Notes or Files app and scan your paper using the instructions above. Once the scan is complete, tap on the document to open it. Now, tap on the Share icon, select Markup from the list of options, and tap on the plus (+) icon. Select Signature from the menu that appears and use your finger to sign on the screen.

3. Password Managers

You probably log in to new and existing accounts on websites and apps every day. This quickly becomes problematic because you need to create a separate password for each site or app to maintain good security practices.

But how do you create unbreakable passwords that you won’t forget? And how do you keep track of all of them?

The solution is a password manager. This tool stores all your passwords and other sensitive information in a secure database, so you don’t have to memorize them. You only need to remember the master password that gives you access to all your stored passwords. Although one might argue that some password managers offer genuine security features, everyday iPhone users won’t need all those bells and whistles.

If that’s the case for you, your iPhone already comes with all the essential features you need in Apple’s built-in password manager, called iCloud Keychain.

iCloud Keychain is a secure tool that stores your passwords and other sensitive data. It syncs this information across all your Apple devices, so you can access it from your iPhone, iPad, or Mac. iCloud Keychain automatically fills in your passwords when you need to sign in to apps and websites. Additionally, it supports two-factor authentication, detects weak or compromised passwords, and helps you create strong passwords.

To enable iCloud Keychain on your iPhone, go to Settings, tap on your name at the top of the screen, then select iCloud. Scroll down and tap on Keychain and toggle the switch on. Now, you can add or view saved passwords by going to Settings > Passwords.

2. Automation Apps

Like password managers, unless you are a power user, you won’t need full-fledged automation apps like IFTTT or Zapier. Instead, you can get by with the built-in Shortcuts app for most of your automation needs.

The Shortcuts app allows you to automate a lot of what you do on your iPhone. For example, you can create a shortcut that sends a message to your significant other when you leave work or one that starts playing a song when you charge your phone.

To make a shortcut on your iPhone, open the Shortcuts app and tap on the plus (+) icon to create a new shortcut. Choose an action from the list, or search for one using the search bar.

1. Battery-Saving Apps

We all wish our phones would last longer between charges, which might have led you to download battery-saving apps promising to eke out a few more hours of use and provide detailed statistics about your battery health and usage.

However, many battery-saving apps are nothing more than snake oil that might drain your battery faster. If you want to save battery life, your best bet is to use the battery-saving features built into your iPhone.

To do this, go to Settings > Battery. Here, you can see your battery usage over the last 24 hours, or 10 days, and your most energy-hungry apps. You can also enable Low Power Mode, which temporarily disables non-essential features, like background app refresh, to save battery life.

Next, you can check your battery health and enable Optimized Battery Charging to prevent your battery from degrading too quickly.

Your iPhone Can Handle More Than You Might Think

Your iPhone is a powerful tool, capable of doing much more than you might think. When it comes to the tasks listed above, your iPhone can handle these essentials easily, without any third-party apps required.

Unless you need extra features, which most people won’t, you can rely on the built-in tools that come with your iPhone to get the job done, while avoiding potential security risks and saving yourself storage space in the process.

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