How to Use the Memories Feature on Your iPhone

By Edward C. Baig, Bob LeVitus

Hidden in almost everyone’s iPhone photo collection are the crown jewels, those images that trigger the most precious memories. As part of the Photos app in iOS 10, Apple added a Memories feature that can help trigger such memories automatically. Tap the Memories tab to take a photographic trip down memory lane.

How does it work? The Photos app smartly scans your picture library and collects images around vacations, birthday parties, or what the app just deems are the best pictures you took during the year or a shorter time frame.

In the Photos app, for example, the Memories feature might automatically build photo memories around trips you take. Within such memories, you can play a Memories movie that the app automatically generates, complete with theme music, titles, and transitions.

Apple promises to deliver up to three new memories daily. You can also produce your own memories by tapping the right-pointing arrow next to a collection or moment or an album.

Inside a memory, you can view pictures by the people in them or by place, with photos plotted on a map. Scroll down to the bottom of a memory and you’ll see related memories. These are groups of photos that the app has determined connect somehow to the memory you’re already looking at, perhaps other trips you’ve taken or photos shot on the same date in a different year. Take a gander at the image to get a sense of how Apple jogs your photographic memories.

Indeed, in grouping photos into albums and such, Apple exploits advanced computer vision technology, using facial, object, and scene recognition along with location data to make intelligent choices.

If you cherish any the memories that Apple has kindly put together on your behalf, tap Add to Favorite Memories at the bottom of the given memory so you can easily access it whenever you choose. If you change your mind, tap Remove from Favorite Memories. And if you don’t like a memory from the start — perhaps it is too bittersweet — tap Delete Memory to wipe it from your own memory.

Want to see memories built around holiday events in your home country? Go to Settings→ Photos & Camera and tap to enable the Show Holiday Events switch.