You should be aware of a strangely secret settings in Apple’s iOS 15 Control Center and MacOS Monterey because it significantly increases vocal quality when using audio and video call apps in iPhone, iPad and Mac.
The feature is called Voice Isolation. It has largely slipped under the radar while announcing it when iOS 15 launched, and we’re reporting on it here. But it’s cool, and whenever people find out about it, they tend to be surprised. Thanks to the Twitter user can duruk, and the edge is pushing Voice Isolation, it has recently exploded. Its remarkable advantages from the depths of your Apple device settings to the headlines.
One of the weirdest features of Voice Isolation is that you need to be on a call to use it. However, once you are on a WhatsApp, FaceTime, or even Zoom call on your Apple device, activate it by swiping down from the upper-right corner for iOS/iPadOS or by clicking for MacOS in the upper-right corner of the screen. Furthermore, you can choose the Mic Modes menu. It’s set to ‘Standard’ by default, but there are two other options: Voice Isolation and Spread Spectrum. Voice Isolation is the one you like to want.
Essentially, it’s like noise cancellation for your voice. Your device’s microphones aggressively process all incoming noise and filter out extraneous background noise to make your sweet tones much clearer in noisy environments. For example, about to cross a busy main street or just to sit at a desk full of people.
Users have reported nothing but good things; everything from barking dogs to noisy MacBook fans got largely removed from calls.
Voice Isolation works on the latest iPhones, iPads, and Macs. As long as you’re running iOS 15 or macOS Monterey, we tested it on an older iPhone 7, and the feature doesn’t show up. On an iPhone 11, the microphone menu appeared. Anyway, but despite running the latest iOS 15.5, the iPhone told us that voice isolation was “not available.”
Review: Much Better Audio Quality, But There’s A Catch
There’s certainly a lot to celebrate here, but there are two big problems with voice isolation, plus the problem of having an awkward conversation with the caller while implementing it in the first place.
First of all, voice isolation isn’t a universal setting, so you’ll need to manually enable it in every app you use for audio and video calls.
Second, there are gaps in app support because Apple makes Voice Isolation available through an API on iOS, iPadOS, and macOS. On mobile devices, for example, Slack, WhatsApp, Signal, and Instagram support it, but TikTok does not. For Zoom, there is support for iOS but not for Mac. And the biggest omission? Real old-school phone calls are possibly the area that needs it the most.