How To Use iOS 17 Lock Screen Features [Complete Guide]

The lock screen Features on iPhones running iOS 17 comes with several new features and customization options that make it more useful and personalized. In this complete guide, we will walk you through how to use all the lock screen features on iOS 17.

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Some of the major lock screen features introduced in iOS 17 include:

  • StandBy Mode – This turns your lock screen into an always-on display with widgets and information.
  • Interactive Widgets – Widgets on the lock screen are now interactive.
  • Quick Actions – You can now take quick actions like opening the camera from the lock screen.
  • Customizable Lock Screen – The lock screen is now highly customizable with widgets, wallpapers and styles.
  • Notification Updates – The lock screen now shows live-updating notifications.

Let’s look at how to use each of these features in more detail:

Using StandBy Mode on iOS 17

StandBy mode turns your iPhone’s lock screen into an always-on display surface, similar to the Apple Watch. Here is how you can use it:

  1. Go to Settings > Wallpaper > StandBy.
  2. Enable StandBy by tapping the toggle.
  3. Choose the StandBy style you want:
    1. Dual Widget Stacks – Two columns of widgets
    1. Fullscreen Widgets – A fullscreen widget
    1. Photo Shuffle – Rotating photos
    1. Current Screen – Same as lock screen
  4. Pick your StandBy tint color and intensity.
  5. You can also disable the red tint when iPhone is in StandBy with Low Power mode on.
  6. Adjust when StandBy turns on and off.

That’s it! Your lock screen will now switch to the StandBy mode and style when your iPhone is idle.

Using Interactive Widgets

The widgets on the lock screen are now interactive, meaning you can tap them to open the app or take action. For example:

  • Tap the Calculator widget to open the calculator app.
  • Swipe through multiple widget stacks.
  • Tap the Weather widget to see hourly forecast.
  • Tap the Calendar widget to create a new event.

To add interactive widgets:

  1. Go to Settings > Wallpaper > Customize.
  2. Tap the (+) icon to add a widget.
  3. Pick the widget and size you want.
  4. Drag the widgets to rearrange them.

So with interactive widgets, you no longer need to unlock your iPhone to take quick actions.

Taking Quick Actions from Lock Screen

iOS 17 allows you take quick actions directly from the lock screen without needing to unlock your iPhone. Here are some of the actions you can take:

  • Open Camera – Swipe left on the lock screen to open the camera app.
  • Open Control Center – Swipe down from top right corner on iPhones with Face ID or swipe up from bottom on other models.
  • See Notifications – Swipe up from middle of the lock screen to view notifications.
  • See Today View – Swipe right on the lock screen to see Today View widgets.

These quick access actions allow you to use some core iPhone features without needing to enter your passcode or use Face/Touch ID.

Customizing the iOS 17 Lock Screen

The lock screen on iOS 17 is highly customizable. You can:

  • Change wallpaper – Go to Settings > Wallpaper and pick a new image or color.
  • Add widgets – Up to 4 small widgets can be added from the Customize menu.
  • Rearrange widgets – Simply drag widgets to change their position.
  • Modify widget stacks – Swipe to change the widgets in a widget stack.
  • Use photos – Enable Photo Shuffle in StandBy to show rotating photos.
  • Change fonts – Go to Settings > Wallpaper > Customize to change lock screen fonts.
  • Customize time – Change the clock style, color and font.

So you can really personalize your lock screen to match your style and show information important to you.

Live-Updating Notifications

Notification on the lock screen are now live-updating. This means you’ll get a real-time view of things like sports scores, Uber’s arrival time, app downloads, location sharing and more directly on the lock screen.

To ensure notifications show up live on the lock screen:

  1. Go to Settings > Notifications.
  2. Ensure Allow Notifications is enabled for the apps you want.
  3. Tap an app and turn on Lock Screen under Notification Center Alerts.

Now notifications from enabled apps will update live on your lock screen without needing to unlock!

Lock Screen Privacy

While the lock screen shows more information now, Apple has added features to maintain privacy:

  • You need to authenticate to fully expand notifications.
  • Sensitive content in notifications is hidden by default.
  • You can turn off notification previews entirely.
  • Wallpaper tinting prevents prying eyes from seeing content on your StandBy screen.

So Apple has balanced additional lock screen functionality with privacy controls. Be sure to configure notification settings to your comfort level.


The iOS 17 lock screen introduces many new capabilities that make it easier to see important information at a glance. Key features include the always-on StandBy mode, interactive widgets, quick actions, extensive customization, and live updating notifications.

With this guide, you should now be able to personalized your iPhone’s lock screen, utilize handy widgets, quickly launch apps, and more without needing to fully unlock your device each time. So update your iPhone to iOS 17 and start using these helpful lock screen features today!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I enable the new lock screen features in iOS 17?

Most of the new lock screen features are enabled by default once you update to iOS 17. But you may need to turn on some manually in Settings > Wallpaper > Customize and Settings > Notifications.

Can I customize the StandBy mode?

Yes, you can choose different StandBy styles like widgets or photos, pick a tint color, set when it turns on/off, and more from Settings > Wallpaper > StandBy.

How many widgets can I add to the lock screen?

You can add up to 4 small widgets on the main lock screen. The StandBy mode supports additional widgets that you can customize.

Can I use my own photos for the lock screen?

Absolutely! You can use your own photos for both the main lock screen and StandBy Photo Shuffle mode.

Is my lock screen content secure on iOS 17?

Yes, Apple has built in privacy protections like notification hiding, authentication to view sensitive notifications, and wallpaper tinting to prevent prying eyes.

How do I quickly open the Camera from the lock screen?

Simply swipe left on the lock screen to instantly open the Camera app. No need to unlock your iPhone first!

Can I reorder widgets on the lock screen?

You can easily reorder lock screen widgets by dragging them into your preferred positions in the Customize menu.

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