Tuesday, May 21, 2024

How to set up your own Contact Poster in iOS 17

Apple is adding numerous features to the iPhone with iOS 17, and one of the most notable is Contact Poster — a way for you to create your own digital calling card through images, colors, and text.

Here’s how it works: when you call someone iPhone-to-iPhone and you’re saved in their contacts, your Contact Poster will appear on their screen. It replaces the much smaller notification and thumbnail picture that was previously displayed and gives you an opportunity to get creative with how you want to appear to your friends, family, or colleagues.

While you’re setting up your Contact Poster, you can also make changes to your Apple ID avatar based on the poster. If you head into Settings on your iPhone or Mac, for example, you’ll see your profile picture can be changed to match whatever you’ve set up as your Contact Poster, whether that’s a new image you’ve snapped or a particular Memoji.

Right now, you need to be running the public beta of iOS 17 in order to take advantage of the Contact Posters feature. It should be made available on all compatible iPhones when the full version of iOS 17 is pushed out later in 2023.

To find the Contact Poster settings in iOS 17:

  • Open the Contacts app on your iPhone.
  • Tap on your name at the top of the contacts list.
  • Choose Contact Photo & Poster.

Contact Poster options include your name and whether you want to automatically share your posters.

If you swipe right, there’s also a Create New option on the far right of your existing Contact Posters.

What you’ll see first are your Contact Poster options: the first and last name you want to use, whether you want to share your name and photo at all, and whether you want to automatically share your posters with everyone in your contacts or whether you’d like iOS to ask you every time you make a call to someone who’s in your contact list.

Now’s your chance to get creative in terms of what other people see when you call them.

To create a new Contact Poster:

  •  Tap Edit, then the + (plus) symbol. If you swipe right, there’s also a Create New option on the far right of your existing Contact Posters you can use instead. 
  • At the bottom of the screen, choose Camera (a new photo), Photos (an existing photo), Memoji, or Monogram (text) to select the type of Contact Poster you want to create.

When you use Camera or Photos to create a new Contact Poster:

  • Take a new photo or pick one from your library.
  • Swipe left or right or move between image and font styles.
  • Tap the color swab (lower right) to change the color for any effect.
  • Pinch in or out on the photo to change the zoom and crop.
  • Tap the text at the top to change the font style, thickness and color.

When you use Memoji  to create a new Contact Poster:

Choose a Memoji from the pop-up window or tap + (plus) to create a new one.

You can change the background color to one you like.

  • Choose a Memoji from the pop-up window or tap + (plus) to create a new one.
  • Once you’ve created your new Memoji or created a variation on an existing one, you can tap the camera icon to pull an expression of your own and save it.
  • On the next screen, you can tap the color swab (lower left) to pick a background color or change the Memoji image (and retain the expression) by tapping the lower right icon.
  • Tap the text at the top to change the font style, thickness and color.

When you use Monogram to create a new Contact Poster:

  • Tap the color swab (lower left) to pick a background color.
  • Tap the text at the top to change the font style, thickness and color.
  • Tap the letter(s) at the lower right to change the large lettering that is in the center of the poster. You can specify one or two characters (for example, your initials).

Whatever type of Contact Poster you’re creating, tap Done when you’re happy, and then Continue on the preview screen.

Monogram lets you use lettering; you can change the font, color, and background.

When you create a new Contact Poster, you can create a contact photo to match.

You can then choose to use your new Contact Poster to update your main contact photo as well, the one used for your Apple ID across your devices and in other people’s contact lists. Tap Skip if you don’t want to do this or Update if you do and you’re happy with the contact photo picture that’s been generated from your Contact Poster, which will be shown on screen. If you tap Skip or Update, you’ll be returned to the screen you saw when you first tapped Contact Photo & Poster, and your new Contact Poster is set.

You can also select Customize Photo (which is under the Update button) if you want to update your contact photo but don’t want something based on the Contact Poster you just made. You again get the same four choices as before — Camera, Photos, Memoji, and Monogram — plus Emoji. In other words, you could have a Monogram Contact Poster but an emoji contact photo or a Memoji Contact Poster but an actual real-life image for your contact photo.

Once that’s done, your details are changed in Contacts, and your new Contact Poster is set. To switch between the different Contact Posters you’ve made and customize them:

  • Head back to Contacts, tap on your name, then choose Contact Photo & Poster.
  • Tap Edit again. 
  • Swipe left or right to pick your current Contact Poster, or Customize to edit one.

Once you pick Customize, you can then choose Contact Photo or Poster, and you’re back to the screens we’ve already looked at. To delete a Contact Poster, swipe up on it, then tap the red trash can icon that appears.

It’s worth mentioning that Contact Posters work seamlessly with another new iOS 17 feature, NameDrop. NameDrop is intended to be a faster, simpler way of exchanging contact information with someone: bring your iPhone close to someone else’s iPhone or Apple Watch, and assuming both devices have Bluetooth enabled, you should get a prompt asking if you want to transfer your contact details.

This prompt displays the Contact Poster you’ve set as the default, and of course, once the contact information is shared, your Contact Poster shows up on the other person’s iPhone as well. At the time of writing, though, NameDrop hadn’t made an appearance in the iOS 17 public beta, so we’ll have to wait to find out how the details work.


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