iOS 17 Makes a Subtle But Potentially Awkward Change to the Phone App

Apple’s iOS updates often include cosmetic changes that can be jarring at first, from the death of skeuomorphism in iOS 7 to the customizable lock screen on iOS 16. When iOS 17 launches next month, it will include a subtle but notable button shift that may take some getting used to.

As CNBC notes, the iOS 17 beta moves the familiar “End Call” button from the center of the bottom-third of the screen and positions it in the lower right-hand corner. It’s a small design change, but if you’re a creature of habit, it could be a bit annoying, at least to start.

Even more awkward, that center space now houses the button to turn your call into a FaceTime call, so there’s an opportunity to make that mistake as well.

ios 17 call screen in ios 16 and ios 17

End call screen on iOS 16 and iOS 17 (Credit: PCMag/Gabriel Zamora)

Apple’s newest mobile OS is now in the public beta stage. If you’re an early adopter who has an extra iPhone lying around to test possibly buggy software, here’s how to sign up. Everyone else should wait until the final version of iOS 17 launches, probably in mid-September.

In general, iOS 17 isn’t expected to make any tremendous changes to the core functionality of your phone and instead is adding a bit of polish to what was already there. That includes voicemail dictation, which will display a message on the phone screen in real time, making it easier to decide if you want to take the call or not.

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The newest version of the phone operating system will also allow you to customize what other iPhone users see when you call. For instance, you can have your Memoji show up on people’s screens or a photo of yourself you particularly enjoy. You’ll also be able to use your photos to make Live Stickers.

A Check In feature will also alert designated friends or family once you reach home.