How to Change the iPhone Lock Screen

Learn how to change the iPhone lock screen to show off one of your favorite photos and how you can make it look different from your iPhone home screen.

This short guide will also explain how to turn off motion on the iPhone lock screen if the small movements of text on the image bother you. We’ll also show you how to use some apps and settings without unlocking your iPhone.

The iPhone lock screen is pretty basic, but you can change the options slightly to control the look of your iPhone screen when it is locked. You cannot add widgets until the iOS 10 update arrives, but you can make sure that you have fast access to an iPhone flashlight, calculator, clock and other quick settings.

This works on any iPhone running iOS 8, iOS 9, iOS 10 and iOS 11, which includes devices as old as the iPhone 4 and as new as the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Change the iPhone lock screen to your own photo.
Change the iPhone lock screen to your own photo.

How to Change the iPhone Lock Screen

Apple includes a lot of options for your iPhone lock screen wallpaper, but you can also use your own photos. Unlike the home screen that covers up most of the photo, you can use the lock screen to show off a photo of your pets, kids or favorite vacation. It’s a great place to put a calming or happy photo, especially since you will likely see it 100 times a day.

You can change your iPhone lock screen in less than a minute once you know where to look. Here’s where to tap on your iPhone.

Change your iPhone lock screen.
Change your iPhone lock screen.

Go to Settings -> Wallpaper -> Choose New Wallpaper to get to a photo library where you can pick the iPhone lock screen.You can tap on Dynamic to choose from seven options from Apple that include moving backgrounds or on Stills to choose from over two dozen built-in high-resolution photos that you can make your iPhone lock screen.

If you want to use your own photo as the iPhone lock screen you can tap on All Photos or another album lower in the menus.

Choose photos or an included image from Apple.
Choose photos or an included image from Apple.

Wherever you go, you will need to find the photo you want to use as your iPhone lock screen and then tap on it. If it is your own photo you can move and scale it to fit. Move the photo with one finger on your screen and use pinch to zoom in or out.

You can also tap on Perspective Zoom to turn motion on or off. Some users don’t like the motion that the iPhone adds to the lock screen.

Set only the lock screen with your photo and you can keep a simpler background for your iPhone home screen.
Set only the lock screen with your photo and you can keep a simpler background for your iPhone home screen.

Next tap on Set Lock Screen. This allows you to only change the iPhone lock screen. Many users prefer a pattern or simple color for the iPhone home screen so that it is easier to see the app icons and names, but a photo on the home screen.

Change iPhone Lock Screen Shortcuts

The iPhone lock screen also includes fast access to the Control Center. This lets you quickly launch apps like the flashlight, calculator and clock, control music playback, change iPhone settings and more. This should be on by default, but some users may have turned it off to prevent someone from changing iPhone settings.

The Control Center is as close as you get to iPhone lock screen settings.
The Control Center is as close as you get to iPhone lock screen settings.

Go to Settings -> Control Center -> Access on Lock Screen -> On to make sure you can use these settings on the iPhone when it is locked.

There is no way to easily disable the camera shortcut on the iPhone lock screen without also disabling the camera completely.

iPhone Lock Screen Widgets

There is no way support for iPhone lock screen widgets like Google offers on Android, but if you use the Notification Center widgets you can still use widgets when the iPhone is locked.

Use the Notification Center widgets instead of iPhone lock screen widgets.
Use the Notification Center widgets instead of iPhone lock screen widgets.

When the iPhone is locked pull down from the top of the screen to see your Today screen. Here you will see various widgets and at the bottom of this screen an edit option to change the widgets.

Many apps include widgets that you can install on your iPhone or iPad as part of customizing your access to information. On iOS 10 and iOS 11 the lock screen includes a swipe right to use lock screen widgets.

What’s New in iOS 11.3.1

What's New in iOS 11.3.1

What's New in iOS 11.3.1

The iOS 11.3.1 update fixes a major problem with aftermarket iPhone screen repairs and includes security updates. If iOS 11.3 broke touch on your iPhone, you will need to plug into your computer to update the iPhone, assuming you have a computer that is already trusted by the iPhone. 

Despite fixing the display, Apple does point the finger at third party displays warning, "Non-genuine replacement displays may have compromised visual quality and may fail to work correctly. Apple-certified screen repairs are performed by trusted experts who use genuine Apple parts. See support.apple.com for more information."

This update also includes security fixes for the iPhone and iPad which will help keep your device safe. 

One Comment

  1. nhan nguyen

    07/24/2015 at 11:32 pm

    i can not unlock my phone by talking

    Reply

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