iPhone 14 Pro: What Dynamic Island does and how to use it

When the iPhone 14 Pro models were announced, Apple surprised many with its innovative integration of software features with the pill-shaped cutout at the top of the screen it calls “Dynamic Island.” This article explains what it does, how it works, and how you can interact with it to perform actions.

What is Dynamic Island and how does it work?

At the start of the rumor cycle leading up to the “iPhone 14 Pro” announcement, we learned that Apple was working on one Alternative to the notch which included a pill shaped cutout and a hole punch cutout to accommodate the TrueDepth camera hardware.

As recently as late August, a week after Apple’s iPhone event invites were sent out, we exclusively reported that when using the “iPhone 14 Pro,” these snippets would appear as a coherent, longer pill shape, and that Apple also planned to release software integrate functions around the pill.

iphone 14 pro blue image
As we now know, on the “iPhone 14 Pro” models, display pixels merge around what Apple calls the “dynamic island” into a pill-shaped area that changes size and shape to accommodate different types of alerts, notifications, and interactions, and it turns into a kind of front-and-center information hub.

Which iPhone models have Dynamic Island?

The dynamic island is limited to the “iPhone 14 Pro” and the “iPhone 14 Pro” Max. The standard iPhone 14 models continue to offer the same notch as the iPhone 13 models.

What can Dynamic Island do?

Here’s a breakdown of the many functions Dynamic Island can fulfill.
iPhone 14 Pro Dynamic Island 3

Dynamic Island: View expenses and alerts

  • Apple Pay transaction confirmations
  • Privacy indicators when using microphone or camera
  • AirDrop file transfers
  • AirPods connection status and battery life
  • ‌iPhone‌ charge level and battery life
  • Low battery warnings
  • Silent mode on or off
  • Face ID Unlock
  • Carkey lock/unlock
  • Unlock Apple Watch
  • NFC Interactions
  • AirPlay connections
  • The focus mode changes
  • Shortcut Actions
  • Airplane mode/no data alerts
  • SIM card alerts
  • connect accessories
  • Find my notifications

Dynamic Island: Background Activities

  • Upcoming and turn-by-turn map directions
  • Incoming call and call duration
  • Remaining time to play the song
  • Active timers
  • Live activity sports scores
  • SharePlay Sessions
  • screen capture
  • Voice memo recordings
  • Personal hotspot connection

Can I interact with Dynamic Island?

It is possible to interact with certain types of content displayed on the dynamic island. For example, if you’re seeing something related to an app’s background activity, you can tap the dynamic island to go directly to the associated app.

Under certain circumstances, e.g. B. when media is playing, you can also long press on the dynamic island to bring up a widget with playback controls.

dynamic island allocation
The dynamic island can also display multiple background activities at the same time, e.g. B. when a timer counts down and when you listen to music. When that happens, the island splits into a larger pill-shaped area and a smaller circular area, allowing you to see and interact with both activities. You can switch between them and tap into them just like you can with Dynamic Island’s standard interface.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the dynamic island on iPhone 14 Pro models is the kind of impressive integration of software and hardware Apple is known for, and the ability of third-party developers to realize its potential means we can expect new and unexpected features from that.

ephemeral digital island for iPhone 14
Additionally, with the release of iOS 16.1 later in 2022, Dynamic Island will also work with Live Activities in third-party apps, so there’s much more to look forward to.

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