Technology NewsHow to customize the iPhone Lock Screen on iOS...

How to customize the iPhone Lock Screen on iOS 16

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iOS 16 finally enables iPhone users to almost fully personalize their Lock Screens. Here’s what you can actually customize and how to do it.


With the release of iOS 16, Apple started allowing iPhone users to personalize their Lock Screens in ways that weren’t possible before. So whether you have the latest iPhone 14 Pro or any other iPhone model running this OS version, you can now customize the Lock Screen on a deeper level. This includes changing the time’s typeface, color, and language. That’s not to mention being able to insert Lock Screen widgets and tweak the notification style. We understand that this major change can be overwhelming to many users. For this reason, we have broken down the elements you can customize on the iOS 16 Lock Screen and the detailed steps you should follow to apply any changes.


iOS 16


What you can customize on the iOS 16 Lock Screen

Let’s start by listing the user interface elements that you can actually tweak on the Lock Screen. Prior to iOS 16, users had been limited to changing the wallpaper in several formats. These included live wallpapers, animated wallpapers, static ones, and those that change depending on your dark/light mode preference. The company has now retired most of the aforementioned categories and rebuilt the Lock Screen from the ground up. iOS 16 now supports the following customizations:

  • Top widget area: Fits one widget, such as Weather, Calendar, or other ones offered by first- and third-party apps
  • Time:
    • Eight typeface options to pick from
    • Multiple colors with color picker support
    • Three script choices
  • Bottom widget area: Fits four small widgets or two big ones (or a combination of both). Many first- and third-party apps have introduced support for it, too
  • Depth effect: When enabled, certain wallpapers can surface parts of them over time, adding a 3D effect
  • Focus mode: You can associate a certain Lock Screen setup with a specific Focus mode
  • Wallpaper: Obviously, you get to change the wallpaper, but we’ll dive into the specifics later on

  • Album art size: You can choose between compact and full-screen cover art sizes for playing media

Customizing the Lock Screen

  1. Start by tapping and holding on the Lock Screen. This will trigger the editing mode.
  2. Click on Customize to alter the existing one, or tap the plus (+) icon to create a new one from scratch. We will demonstrate the fresh creation mechanism here — as it will also encompass the customization process.
  3. At the very top, you will find:
    • Photos: You choose a wallpaper from your photo library
    • Photo Shuffle: Shuffles through several photos
    • Emoji: Allows you to select several emojis and create a patterned wallpaper accordingly
    • Weather: Turns the local weather conditions and time of day into a realistic, real-time wallpaper
    • Astronomy: Includes a selection of Earth, Moon, and other shots
    • Color: This lets you pick a plain color and optionally apply filters and add gradients to it
  4. If you scroll through the generated wallpaper list, you will also find a collection of built-in wallpapers, such as the iOS 16 one, Pride, Unity, Clownfish, etc.
  5. Pick one of the wallpapers to proceed with the Lock Screen creation and customization process.
  6. iOS will highlight the section you can tweak, such as the widgets, time, etc.
  7. Click on any of the highlighted elements and choose from the available options we’ve listed in the previous section of this article.
  8. Tap on Add once you’re done. Choose Set as Wallpaper Pair if you want the Home Screen to have the Lock Screen’s wallpaper.
  9. If you’d rather have a different Home Screen wallpaper, tap Customize Home Screen.
  10. There you get to choose between the Lock Screen wallpaper in both its original and blurred-out forms. Alternatively, you can also choose a plain-color wallpaper or a gradient one.
  11. After you create more than one Lock Screen setup, you get to link individual setups to your Focus modes.
  12. To do so, tap and hold on to the Lock Screen to go into edit mode.
  13. Click on Focus.
  14. Choose one of your Focus modes to link the Lock Screen setup to.

Voilà! Now you can create as many Lock Screen setups as possible and switch between them freely. If you dislike one of them, you could always go into edit mode, then swipe up on the setup to delete it.


The customizable iPhone Lock Screen certainly makes iOS more appealing to certain Android users. Apple is slowly working on making the OS more personal, flexible, and feature-rich. From being limited to just changing the wallpaper to this. iOS is truly maturing into a more complete operating system. If you’re looking for ways to customize the Always-On display, we’ve also prepared a dedicated guide to help you out.

Do you plan to customize your iOS Lock Screen? If so, show us your setup in the comments section below.

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