The iPhone X is built with gestures in mind, taking MultiTouch to the next level as it’s now the main way to interact with the iPhone. Doing things as simple as double-tapping the Home button to show the App Switcher, using Reachability for items at the top of the screen, and Force Quitting apps has changed.
These are the top five gestures that you need to know to take full advantage of the iPhone X.
1: How to access the App Switcher on the iPhone X
On previous versions of iOS hardware, accessing the App Switcher to swap to another app or force quit an app was as simple as double-tapping the home button; however, with iPhone X, the home button is no more.
To access the App Switcher—whether you’re in an app or on the Home Screen—you’ll use the Home gesture (swipe up from the bottom), except you’ll stop halfway up the screen and pause. The view will change to the App Switcher you know and love (Figure A).
2. How to force quit apps on the iPhone X
Inside of the App Switcher, you may be wondering how to force quit an app, because in this new switcher, swiping up does not quit the app. To force quit an app, launch the App Switcher, then tap and hold on an app. This will enter editing mode where you can either choose the “-” button that appears in the corner of each open app, or swipe up as you would on a non-iPhone X iOS device.
As we’ve mentioned in a previous article, you only need to Force Quit unresponsive apps. There is no need to force quit apps on a regular basis.
3. How to quickly swipe to the previously used app on the iPhone X
The Home Indicator at the bottom of the screen gives you many capabilities at a single tap or swipe. Swiping from left to right on the Home Indicator will launch the previously used app from the App Switcher without the need to open the App Switcher. This feature is very useful on the iPhone and greatly improves multitasking capabilities because it lets you jump between apps quickly and efficiently.
4. How to enable Reachability on the iPhone X
Reachability is an accessibility feature that can be enabled on previous iPhone models by double-tapping on the Home Button to slide the top of the screen down by half the screen to make top items more reachable while holding the device with one hand. With the Home Button gone, this feature has changed slightly and is not enabled by default.
To enable Reachability in iOS 11.1.1, follow these steps.
- Open the Settings app.
- Navigate to General | Accessibility.
- Enable the option for Reachability (Figure B).
To use Reachability once it’s enabled, swipe down on the Home Indicator at the bottom of the screen. You’ll see the current app slide half way down the screen, giving you easier access to reach the items at the top of the screen.
5. How to manage the iPhone X’s Home Screen
On an iPhone X, you may be wondering how to exit out of Home Screen arranging mode (aka jiggly mode). First, enter this mode by tapping and holding on an icon or folder on the Home Screen. The icons will begin wiggling, and you can rearrange them. To exit this mode, swipe up from the bottom like you would to exit to the Home Screen from an app. In iOS 11.1.1, a Done button appears in the top right corner of the screen in the status bar area—Tapping this button will also exit editing mode.
Cory Bohon is an indie developer, creating both iOS and OS X applications at Cocoa App (his own company), MartianCraft, and for various other clients. As a part of full disclosure, he does not write about any software that he has created or has helped to create through these outlets.
Cory Bohon is an indie developer specializing in iOS and OS X development. He runs a software company called Cocoa App and is also a developer at MartianCraft. He was introduced to technology at an early age and has been writing about his favorite technology part-time since 2007. He runs a development blog named ObjDev when he isn’t writing about consumer tech.