Wide Spectrum on iOS 15: What It Is and How to Use It

How to improve your FaceTime experience with Wide Spectrum mode

What to Know

  • Start a FaceTime call then swipe up to the Control Center and toggle the Mic Mode to Wide Spectrum. 
  • Wide Spectrum is used to capture all sounds around you proving useful for conference calls.
  • It helps others in the room to hear everything around you.

This article teaches you how to use Wide Spectrum microphone mode on iOS 15 as well as the limitations involved and why you might want to use it.

How Do You Get Wide Spectrum for FaceTime?

Wide Spectrum is available in iOS 15. It's used to enhance all the background noise around you so your friends, family or colleagues can hear things with better quality. Here's how to enable it. 

The setting only appears when you're actually on a voice or video call. It won't appear in the Control Center in any other situation.

  1. Open FaceTime on your iPhone. 

  2. Start a video call with someone.

  3. Swipe down from the top-right corner of the screen to open Control Center.

  4. Tap Mic Mode.

  5. Tap Wide Spectrum.

    Steps required to turn on Wide Spectrum mode on iOS 15
  6. Swipe away to dismiss Control Center and return to the call.

  7. Wide Spectrum is now active on the call.

What Is Wide Spectrum iOS 15?

Wide Spectrum mode is used to bring in and enhance background noises around you. If you'r trying to use FaceTime for a conference call in the office or to participate in a family gathering, this is the mode to use. 

Much like Voice Isolation mode, it does this through machine learning so your iPhone knows where to focus the sounds on. 

By doing so, other participants on the call can take in more of what's going on around you. It's the reverse of noise cancellation or Voice Isolation, enhancing the sounds around you.

Why Would You Use Wide Spectrum Mode?

Wide Spectrum mode is useful in various situations where you need to elevate the sounds around you. Here's a look at some of the best examples of where it can help.

  • When participating in a group call. Gathered the family around your FaceTime call so everyone can say hi to that relative living away? Turn Wide Spectrum Mode on and everyone can be heard making the experience feel more like you're actually there.
  • When conducting a lesson. If you're trying to perform or conduct a lesson such as a music performance on FaceTime, Wide Spectrum enhances the sound so every detail is captured more appropriately than if Voice Isolation or Standard mode was used. 
  • When wanting to capture a moment better. Simply put, with more background noise and sound, the person you're talking to gets a fuller experience of what you're dealing with. Ideal for those long distance calls where folks think they're missing out.

Does Wide Spectrum Work With Other Apps?

It's possible for Wide Spectrum to work with other apps as Apple hasn't restricted the mode to solely Apple-made apps. However, no third-party apps currently support it. Expect to see it introduced elsewhere in the future. 

Does Wide Spectrum Work With Older iPhones?

Wide Spectrum requires an A12 Bionic chip or newer so it won't work on the iPhone X or older devices. 

  • How do I activate Voice Isolation on iOS 15?

    During a FaceTime call, swipe up to the Control Center and toggle the Mic Mode to Voice Isolation. The Voice Isolation feature on Google Meet uses machine learning to block out ambient sound. It's only available on newer iPhones. 

  • How do I share my screen on FaceTime?

    Use Apple SharePlay to share your device's screen during a call. You can also use SharePlay to stream music and video from a compatible app.

  • Why isn't my microphone working on FaceTime?

    If there's no sound on FaceTime, check your volume and make sure that you haven't muted your microphone. Close any apps that can also use your microphone. If you're still having trouble, check your Wi-Fi or mobile data connection, then update and restart your device.

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