Every New Notes App Feature in iOS 18

Notes is quietly one of the most useful apps in the Apple ecosystem. It’s one of the best note-taking apps for iPhone, can bring in multiple collaborators, and has plenty of additional features such as a built-in document scanner. With iOS 18, Apple is making Notes even better. Here are the best new Apple Notes features to try out for once you’ve installed the new OS.

Take Voice notes in iOS

A voice note being recorded in Apple Notes in iOS 18.

Credit: Pranay Parab

Apple Notes now supports voice recordings in iOS 18. The app allows you to take quick voice notes and embeds them inline into your text. Plus, once a voice note is recorded, you can also share the audio file with others. This means that you don’t have to share your entire note just to pass along an audio recording. You can choose any individual voice note and share it with anyone.

To record a voice note, create a new note and tap the paperclip icon, then select Record Audio. Next, hit the red record button when you’re ready and start speaking. Tap the pause button to pause a recording or tap Done to finish.

Your iPhone will even transcribe your voice notes

With iOS 18, Notes can also transcribe your voice note for you, saving you the hassle of manually typing out everything you just recorded. This feature is available on iPhone 12 or newer and currently only supports one language—English. That said, it will work with the following regional differences:

  • English (Australia)

  • English (Canada)

  • English (Ireland)

  • English (New Zealand)

  • English (South Africa)

  • English (UK)

  • English (U.S.).

Oddly, iPhones also support two additional variations of English, namely English (India) and English (Singapore), but live audio transcription isn’t yet available for these.

To transcribe audio in notes, tap on any audio recording in Notes, then the quotation mark at the bottom left of your screen.

Solve math problems

A screenshot of the Notes app, showing a math problem being solved.

Credit: Pranay Parab

Apple Notes appears to be taking a leaf out of Soulver’s book and adding a feature that lets you solve math problems. You can quickly set up a bunch of variables and define their values within notes, such as x=10, y=20, and z=30, and Notes will be able to tell you what x+y+z is. You can also assign full names to your variables and Notes will still perform your calculations just fine. Support includes common math calculations including addition, multiplication, division, and subtraction. Math in notes uses the same tech powering the new Math Notes section of the Calculator app.

Navigate large notes with ease

Notes has allowed you to break your notes down into sections for some time, but adding too many sections used to make your notes hard to skim through. In iOS 18, you can collapse the sections you want to skip, which significantly reduces the amount of scrolling needed to reach the end. Don’t worry—collapsing a section of notes won’t delete it. To use this feature, apply the Heading style to any section of notes, then tap the heading to collapse it.

Add some color to your notes

Some people like to use different colors when they’re typing. Maybe you want to make important parts of your note pop or separate out topics by color. In Notes for iOS 18, you can easily try out different colors by tapping the Aa button from the Notes toolbar above the keyboard, then selecting the circle in the second row. You can choose one of the following options: purple, pink, orange, mint, and blue.

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