How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen [Ultimate Guide]

The ultimate guide on iPhone lock screen customization for iOS 16.

Apple brought a major revamp to the iPhone lock screen with the release of iOS 16. Yes, the long-awaited lock screen change came with iOS 16. And the best thing is, users can customize each element available on the lock screen including clock font, notifications layout, add widgets, and wallpapers with color filters and depth effect. You can give a complete overhaul to your iPhone’s lock screen with new features.

If you want to know how to do it, then you are in the right place, here’s a detailed guide on how to customize lock screen on iPhone.

In the past few years, Apple has brought several changes to its iPhone OS – iOS. The iOS 14 brought widgets to the home screen, whereas, the lock screen changes come with iOS 16. Personalizing the lock screen is a great way to showcase your personality and make your device truly your own.

iOS 16 brings multiple ways of customizing the lock screen and in this article, we will look at different ways to customize the lock screen.

Let’s begin.

Changing the Lock Screen Wallpaper on iPhone

Wallpaper is always the best way to start customization on the lock screen and selecting a good wallpaper is always crucial. Apple introduced a new and quick way to change the lock screen background. Here’s how you can do it.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. Unlock your iPhone with FaceID or TouchID.
  2. Press and hold on the Lock Screen.
  3. Tap the + icon at the bottom right corner (or you can swipe right until you see the Add New page with + icon option).
  4. Now select your favorite wallpaper from the Lock Screen wallpaper gallery or from Photos.

iOS 16 includes a new wallpaper gallery that allows users to choose the ideal background from a variety of categories such as Pictures, Emoji, Weather, and more. The wallpaper gallery is divided into sections; browse through all of them.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen

Photos: Find the image you want by using the search filter or picking your favorite photo from the album, Apple integrated the People option inside the Photos section.

Photo Shuffle: As the name suggests, the photos will be shuffled throughtout the day as you use your iPhone, you can select Photos manually or choose categories such as people, pets, nature, or cities.

Emoji: You can create a unique wallpaper using up to six emojis and five patterns.

Weather: A dynamic wallpaper will be generated based on the current weather conditions outside your home or office.

Astronomy: Astronomy is another dynamic wallpapers set with a wallpaper of the Earth, Moon, and Solar System with a nice set of unlock animations.

Colors: A built-in wallpaper maker, whether you want to make a plain background of your favorite color or a gradient background you can generate it using Colors tool.

You can scroll down to the lock screen wallpaper gallery and find some pre-made wallpapers available in all these sections.

Depth Effect aka Multilayered Photo Effect is one of the best tools for lock screen customizations on iOS 16. It splits the background into multiple layers using the AI-based image processing engine, a small portion of the object will come on top of the clock for an awesome lock screen look.

iOS 16 depth effect wallpapers

By default, iOS 16 has over 40+ stock wallpapers and the best part a few built-in wallpapers work with the depth effect too. If you’re tired of using the same built-in wallpapers or your old photos from the library, then you can check our depth effects wallpaper collection which has over 60+ amazing wallpapers optimized for depth effect.

You can also explore our beloved YMWC (YTECHB’s Monthly Wallpaper Collection) which has minimal wallpapers, hide the dock backgrounds, AI-generated wallpapers, dynamic island wallpapers for iPhone 14 Pro models, aesthetics wallpapers, and more. Additionally, you can check out the social media platforms including Reddit, Twitter, Pinterest, or Telegram for more options.

iOS 16 comes with dynamic wallpapers too. Although, the collection is not so big, Astronomy has three different options including Earth, Moon, and Solar System. Weather will automatically generate a dynamic wallpaper based on the current weather condition. Pride is another category where you find a colorful dynamic wallpaper.

Now you know about all about the default wallpapers available in the wallpaper gallery. Once you find a perfect wallpaper for your lock screen, simply tap the Add button at the top right corner and then select Set as Wallpaper Pair option.

Customizing the Lock Screen Wallpaper

iOS 16 offers a number of filters users can use to customize the lock screen background. However, the filters options may vary with different wallpapers. Here’s how you can change quickly change the filters.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. Unlock the iPhone, Press and Hold on the lock screen.
  2. Tap on the Add button to add a new wallpaper.
  3. Select the wallpaper.
  4. On the editing page, you have an option to change the entire look of the wallpaper by swiping between different color filters.

By default, Natural filter is enabled, swiping to left will bring Black & White, Duotone, and Colour Wash filters. If your photos look more attractive with any of these filters, you can simply select it by pressing the Done option at the top right corner.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen

An additional color styling option works with select photos, it lets you choose color of your choice to style the lock screen background. You can easily access the option by tapping the three-dots icon at the bottom right corner.

The next and big option for lock screen wallpaper customization is the Depth Effect. We have already discussed about the Depth Effect earlier, but, you can turn the option on or off by tapping the three dots icon. It will not work if you are adding widgets to your lock screen.

Once you have a good background applied on your iPhone’s lock screen. Now is the time for changing the Clock font.

Changing the Lock Screen Clock Font

Apple introduces a nice set of fonts for the lock screen clock. The fronts are available in Arabic, Arabic Indic, and Devanagari. There are a total of eight options to choose from along with an option to change the clock’s color. Here’s how you can change the clock font as well as color on the lock screen.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen

When you successfully add a new wallpaper to your lock screen and personalize it with color filters, you can tap the clock for changing its font and color.

Tapping the Clock will popup the customization panel with a different set of fonts and color options, choose the font you like.

The bottom section of the customization panel has several color options, you can select any color and customize it a further by sliding the color customizer.

Lock Screen Widgets

Apple brought widgets to the lock screen with iOS 16. Default as well as third-party apps now has widgets for the lock screen, whether you want to keep an eye on your incoming parcel or weather conditions outside your office or your stocks, you can do it all by adding a widget to the lock screen.

We have a dedicated article on the best lock screen widgets for iOS 16, you can tap the best iOS 16 lock screen widgets to explore third-party widgets from different categories.

Users can add up to four small widgets to the lock screen or two big widgets or one big widget alongwith two small widgets. Here’s how you can add a widget to the lock screen.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. Unlock your iPhone, press and hold the lock screen.
  2. Tap Customize, then select lock screen.
  3. Tap Add Widgets option.
  4. Choose the widget which you want to add.
  5. Tap or drag the widget to the widgets area.
  6. That’s it.

Most of these widgets are customizable widgets, suppose, if you add a clock widget, then you can tap the widget and change the location. The same can be done with stocks widget, you can customize it and add your favorite stocks to the lock screen.

Apart from the large widgets, the lock screen has a text widget placed above the clock, you can tap on it and change the widget. The text widget cannot be removed from the lock screen.

Personalize Notifications Layout on the Lock Screen

Apple revamped the way notifications appear on the lock screen. The new options let you manage notifications layout easier than ever. There are three layout options available on iOS 16 which include Count, Stack, and List. You can head over to this detailed guide to know more about each layout or if you are aware of these layouts, you can customize the layout of the notification in Settings.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen

Here are the steps, open the Notifications Settings then choose between Count, Stack, or List in the Display As section. Once done, you’ll see the effect immediately on your iPhone’s lock screen.

Linking the Lock Screen with Focus Mode

Apple introduced Focus Modes with iOS 15, a pretty useful tool that lets you keep focused to the things you’re working on. There are various focus modes, suppose the Work focus is enabled, you will get notifications and alerts from the work apps and stay focused with your work. The best part is, you can link up your lock screen to the Focus Mode and set a different wallpaper for each.

If you love using Focus Modes on your iPhone, now you can allot different wallpaper to each Focus Mode, here are the steps you can follow to link any wallpaper to the focus mode.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. Unlock the iPhone, touch and hold on the lock screen.
  2. Tap the Focus icon.
  3. Choose the Focus mode.
  4. That’s it.

Navigating to Focus Mode Settings lets you select wallpaper for the lock screen, home screen, as well as, watch face for Apple Watch.

Finalizing the Lock Screen

When you have a personalized wallpaper, clock, and widgets placed on the lock screen, it’s time to save it.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. You can easily save your personalized lock screen by tapping the Done button.
  2. A pop-up will show the preview of lock screen and home screen.
  3. If you want to customize the home screen, then you can select Customize Home Screen option and change the home screen appearance as you want.
  4. Then tap Done at the top right corner.
  5. That’s it.

Bonus: Change Wallpapers Automatically

Photo Shuffle is the new tool introduced by Apple that automatically changes the wallpaper depend on the selected frequency. You can select your favorite photos manually and change the frequency for changing the wallpaper, here’s how you can do it inside the Photo Shuffle options.

How to Customize iPhone Lock Screen
  1. Unlock the iPhone, press and hold the lock screen.
  2. Swipe to the right, then tap on Add button.
  3. Select the Photo Shuffle option.
  4. Select your favorite photos.
  5. Tap on Shuffle Frequency, you can choose the Hourly, Daily, On Tap, or On Lock option.
  6. That’s it.

Additional Tips

Lock Screen Music Player: Apple updates the music player user interface for the lock screen on iOS 16, tapping the newer player will show the album art in big size with the updated background color.

Live Activities: Live Activities is another tool available on iOS 16 for lock screen and there are a few third-party apps that let you add app shortcuts to the lock screen with Lock Launcher. You can do even more with live activities, keep an eye on the NBA, NFL, NHL, and CFL game scores with Sports Alerts app, and many more. If you want to add animated widgets to the dynamic island on iPhone 14 Pro, then you can add it with Apollo for Reddit app or Island Animation app.

Check out Brandon Butch’s video on some best live activities apps for the lock screen.

Always-On Display: The feature is limited to iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, but you can take advantage of the anticipated feature to make your lock screen look attractive in dark. You can navigate to this page to explore how you can enable this feature on your iPhone 14 Pro series.

Battery Percentage: Battery Percentage is another new feature coming with iOS 16. The options allow you to keep an eye on the battery percentage, here’s a guide on how you can enable the feature.

All wallpapers used in this lock screen customization guide are picked from our iOS 16 Depth Effect Wallpapers collection as well as from our beloved wallpapers series – YMWC.

So, these are the various methods you can opt for to customize the lock screen on your iPhone. If you still have any queries on how to customize iPhone lock screen, then tell me in the comment section.

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Haneet Singh

Haneet is the Founder and Editor-In-Chief of YTECHB. He has a huge passion for tinkering with latest smartphones, wearables, smart home devices, smart TVs, and more. As an avid Apple Ecosystem user, he loves customizing his iPhone and iPad to suit his needs. For tips, you can connect Haneet at In 2019, Haneet and the YTECHB team exclusively shared the wallpapers of iPhone 11 right before the launch event. In 2020, Haneet alongside his team members shared exclusive renders and official photos of two Samsung Galaxy smartphones - the Galaxy M11, and Galaxy M21. Later, the YTECHB team leaks information about Motorola's feature phones and Razr 3. In the last few months, our team shared Galaxy S24 Ultra leaks and more. You may come across with our work getting mentioned in The Times of India, India Today, Hindustan Times, NDTV, TechRadar, Digital Trends, Yahoo News, GSMArena, Android Authority, Android Central, Android Headlines, SamMobile, XDA, 9to5Google, and many other publications. He works across news, updates, features, guides, and more. If YTECHB writes about it, you can expect him to be involved in some way.

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