Over the past several versions of iOS, Apple has released tremendous privacy features that make it harder for prying eyes to peek at your personal data. But when it comes it repairs or service, it’s still an all-or-nothing scenario. Either erase your phone or hope no one looks at anything.
Samsung has a better way and it’s one Apple should consider copying. Called Maintenance Mode, it’s a new privacy feature that shuts down anything personal on your phone without needing to erase anything.
As Samsung explains, Maintenance Mode can be switched on in the Battery settings and requires a reboot. Once it’s on, the person servicing the device won’t be able to see any personal information including photos, documents, and messages, and all user-installed apps will also disappear. It’s basically Safe Mode for your phone.
Additionally, any data or accounts created when using Maintenance Mode will be automatically deleted as soon as the owner turns it off. And while the user will be able to download apps while in Maintenance Mode, they too will be deleted.
It’s a fantastic feature and one that the iPhone and iPad need. We all need to take our devices in for service and it’s a nuisance to completely wipe them clean every time. So here’s hoping Apple gets inspired to release Safe Mode for iPhone in iOS 17.
Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He's still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.