iOS 18 can do math everywhere and lets you choose your preferred Home hub

iOS 18 overview
(Image credit: Apple)

When Apple unveiled iOS 18 at WWDC last week, it didn’t reveal every feature that's packed into this massive update, but thanks to the first developer beta, we’re now learning about some handy changes from iOS 17 that weren’t announced on stage.

One of these changes, as spotted by @rjonesy on X (via Android Authority), will see your iPhone able to automatically solve any math problem that you enter into a text field. You can then choose whether to keep the entire calculation in the text field, or just the answer your phone gave you.

This iOS 18 feature could save you from ever having to use the calculator app again, which makes for interesting timing, since Apple has only just added a calculator to the iPad, right as it’s making the calculator less important.

Choose your own Home hub

Another new iOS 18 feature was found by SteveIsTheDude on Reddit (via The Verge). They discovered that you can now set your preferred Home hub, which is handy for anyone who has multiple devices that could serve as a Home hub, such as a HomePod 2 and an Apple TV.

Previously, Apple would automatically decide which device to set as your Home hub, which sometimes meant it wouldn’t select the best option. Many users have noted, for example, that a device connected to Wi-Fi would always be selected, rather than one connected to Ethernet, leading to the Home hub working more slowly than it would otherwise.

That’s a problem, because your Home hub is the brains of any Apple-powered smart home, so things like viewing security cameras and turning lights off can happen noticeably more slowly if a sub-optimal Home hub is selected.

Sadly, since iOS 18 is still in beta, you won’t get these features yet unless you enroll in the beta (here's how to download the iOS 18 beta, if you're interested). 

You’ll probably have to wait until September for the finished iOS 18 release, but judging by the sheer number of exciting iOS 18 features on the horizon, it should be worth the wait.

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James Rogerson

James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to, and and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.