How to access the hidden scientific calculator on your iPhone calculator app

Stock image of woman using an iPhone with inset image of iPhone's calculator app
The more you know! Photo credit: Getty Images

You might remember the days of using a scientific calculator in maths class: think sine, cosine and tangent functions, logarithms - as a writer, equations I haven't had to use for about 10 years.  

But for those among us who do need a helping hand with arithmetic every now and then - and a bog-standard calculator just won't cut it - it turns out the iPhone calculator app has a somewhat secret mode unbeknownst to many. For those of you who do know about this hidden high-tech, shush - clearly not everyone is as competent with a calculator as you are.

After you open the default calculator app on your iPhone, make sure the screen orientation lock is disabled and then simply turn the device on its side - and hey presto, you have a scientific calculator for all your exponential, logarithmic and trigonometric needs.

Screenshot of scientific calculator on author's iPhone
You now have a scientific calculator for all your exponential, logarithmic and trigonometric needs. Photo credit: Newshub

There's even hidden functions in the scientific calculator, which you can reveal by simply hitting the '2nd' button. The scientific mode also allows users to randomly generate numbers by hitting the 'Rand' button on the bottom right.

Screenshot of scientific calculator's additional functions on author's iPhone
To access even more 'hidden' functions, hit the '2nd' button in the scientific mode. Photo credit: Newshub

To switch between the standard and scientific calculators without losing your calculation, simply rotate your phone.

Smart phone with calculator on gray background - stock photo
Photo credit: Getty Images

And to get the most out of your basic calculator, here are some handy hacks that make it simpler and more effective to use. If you make a typo, the typical response is to grunt with exasperation before hitting the 'C' and starting all over again. But instead of wiping the calculation, you can delete the numbers individually by swiping left or right across the display. 

Additionally, if you need to access your last result - for example, to send your significant other the bills for the month - you don't even have to enter the app. Simply press and hold the app's icon from the home screen and an option will appear to 'copy your last result', which you can then paste into different apps. The more you know, huh.  

As they say: work smarter, not harder.