Focus Mode in iOS 16: iPhone Guide

In addition to the ability to create custom lock screens for iPhone with iOS 16, Focus mode gets some useful upgrades that make it easier to set up, but also more flexible and powerful. New features include focus filters, the option to associate focus modes with specific lock screens, set a custom homepage, and more. Here’s a hands-on look at using Focus mode in iOS 16.

Focus Mode in iOS 16 brings a new setup and customization design that makes it easier to get started and move on.

And three major new features for Focus mode include linking them to your different iPhone Lock screens, setting a custom homepage and the new Focus filters to make it easier than ever to stay on track with what matters.

iOS 16 is currently available as a developer beta. The free public iOS 16 beta will arrive in July. Learn more about Install iOS 16 in our full guide

Focus Mode in iOS 16: Customize with Lock Screens, Home, Filters

Remark: If you haven’t used Focus mode at all, go to the Settings appFocus and tap the + icon in the top right corner to set some – the new process is more seamless and intuitive.

With iOS 16 you can now:

  1. Link a focus mode to your lock screens
    • Long press on your lock screen > tap Focus at the bottom, now choose which focus mode you want to associate with your lock screen
    • You can also go to Settings > Focus > choose a Focus > select To elect under the heading “Customize screens”
    • You can assign different focus modes to different custom lock screens and quickly swipe between them to switch focus modes automatically
    • If you schedule different focus modes or use smart activation, your assigned lock screen will also change when the focus mode changes
  2. Set a custom homepage for focus mode
    • Go to Settings > Focus > choose a Focus > select Choose under the “Customize screens” for the middle option to set a custom homepage
    • Now you can choose between smart suggestions for your home screen page or an existing page – then you can customize it
    • You can also set custom Apple Watch faces to pair with Focus modes
  3. Focus filters
    • Go to Settings > Focus > choose a Focus
    • Swipe down and tap Add filter
    • Choose your filters and tap To add when you modified them

Pairing a focus mode with lock screens

Here’s what it looks like to assign a focus mode to a custom lock screen:

Focus Mode in iOS 16 1

Repeat the same steps to change your docked focus mode or add focus modes to other lock screens. You can also change them via Settings > Focus.

As mentioned above, a useful way to make custom lock screens change automatically is by setting them up with focus modes and scheduling or by using smart activation.

Set a custom home page (home screen) for focus mode

This is a valuable feature that helps you focus on only the apps you need/want for a particular focus mode – you can still access all your apps, but the only app page you see within a set focus mode , is what you set with the custom homepage.

Focus Mode in iOS 16 2

After choosing a new suggested “Home Page” or existing one, you can tap “Edit Apps” at the bottom to customize it.

Focus Mode in iOS 16 3

Tap To add in the top right corner to set it as your focus mode home screen. You can also choose to pair a face for your Apple Watch with a Focus mode.

Focus filters

Focus filter support for now includes Calendar, Mail, Messages, and Safari, as well as two system filters for Low Power and Dark Mode.

Focus mode in iOS 16 wrap-up

As in iOS 15, you can still set Smart Activation (automation) for Focus modes. And if you want to manually enable or disable a focus mode, the fastest way to do that is still to pull up the Control Center and tap the circle icon next to the focus mode.

Are you excited about the new improvements to Focus mode with iOS 16? What are you most looking forward to using? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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