Jot down a note anytime, anywhere, with Instant Notes in Control Center!

Want to write a quick note when your phone is locked? Use Instant Notes!

With iOS 13, Apple introduced a new feature called Instant Notes, which is still available in iOS 14 for the best iPhone and iPad. This feature lets you access the Notes app right from the Lock Screen through Control Center. It works with brand new notes, or you can even resume an old one if need be. Either way, Instant Notes on iPhone and iPad is the fastest way to make sure you jot down those important thoughts and ideas before they escape you. Here’s how to get Instant Notes on iPhone and iPad.

How to enable Notes in Control Center

Before you can access Notes from the lock screen, you’ll first need to enable Notes in the Control Center.

  1. Launch Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Control Center.
  3. Tap the green plus button next to Notes.

Now you’ll be able to access Notes from the Control Center.

How to enable Instant Notes from the lock screen

After you’ve given Control Center access to Notes, you’ll have to allow Notes to be used from the Lock Screen. It’s easy to do so!

  1. Launch Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Notes.

  3. Tap Access Notes from Lock Screen (you need to scroll all the way to the bottom).
  4. Tap the option you want. Your options are as follows:

    • Off: This will disable Notes from being accessed from the lock screen.
    • Always Create New Note: This option will always create a new note when using Instant Notes.
    • Resume Last Note: This will allow you to edit the last note you created.

How to access Instant Notes on your iPhone or iPad

Once you have it all set up, starting an Instant Note is pretty straightforward.

On an iPhone or iPad with Touch ID:

Swipe up from the bottom of the Lock Screen, then tap the Notes button.

On an iPhone or iPad with Face ID:

Swipe down from the upper right corner of the Lock Screen, then tap the Notes button.

Unfortunately, you can’t just write a note on the Lock Screen, as you may have thought. Instead, the Instant Notes in Control Center launches the Notes app directly, so you can do anything you normally would in the Notes app.

How to customize how long a recently added note is accessible from the lock screen

If you don’t want to create a new note every time you create an Instant Note, you can change the frequency in the settings for Notes.

  1. Launch Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Notes.
  3. Tap Access Notes from Lock Screen.

  4. Tap Resume Last Note. Make sure you also select whether you want to resume the Last Note created on Lock Screen or Viewed in Notes App.
  5. Tap the amount of time you want. Your options are as follows:

    • After 5 Minutes
    • After 15 Minutes
    • After 1 Hour
    • After Today
    • Never

Any other questions about Instant Notes on iPhone?

As you can see, Instant Notes makes it easier and faster to get to the Notes app than ever before. It’s definitely useful when you need to quickly jot down something like an address, phone number, email, or even your brilliant thoughts and ideas that you don’t want to forget. Do you have more questions about Instant Notes on iPhone and iPad? Let us know in the comments.

Updated April 2021: Updated for iOS 14.

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