Use 3D Touch in Control Center

Apple first brought Force Touch, a force-sensing technology, to the Apple Watch. But shortly after Android phone maker Huawei released the feature on its new smartphones, Apple released and popularized the feature on iPhones, first with the iPhone 6s.

Apple calls this multi-touch capability 3D Touch. This adds an innovative way to open the most frequently accessed steps or functions of iPhone users. Use 3D Touch by pushing on the iPhone screen and holding down a pressure. This shows any shortcuts available in the app being pressed.

3D Shortcut to Twitter App

For example, 3D Touch is best known as a shortcut to app functions. Try using 3D Touch for the Twitter iOS app – one can quickly tweet, DM (direct message) or search.

Less well known is its value in the iOS Control Center, especially given the user’s ability to customize Control Center controls. Then let’s explore how to use some cool keyboard shortcuts this way.

3D Touch on mobile data

One of the built-in shortcuts in Control Center in turn Mobile data on or off. You’ll find this in the top left panel of the Control Center along with Bluetooth, Wifi, and Airplane Mode.

When you 3D Touch (press and hold) on the Cellular Data icon, this is what you see:

3D Touch only adds AirDrop contacts and Personal Hotspot to Control Center

It should be noted that you can get this same expanded menu by 3D tapping any of the four icons in this group. Let’s talk in more detail about the two new options.

AirDrop Shortcuts

AirDrop is how Apple device users can wirelessly transfer files to OS X and iOS devices. One can choose from several receiving modes, including Receive goods off arrive Contact only arrive Everybody. But if one sets the receive mode to Everybody to receive files from a known person nearby, that setting remains until changed manually.

Sadly, this setting can invite strangers to take advantage of it, as described in this article. So use this AirDrop shortcut on the go to quickly change back to Contacts Only or Receive Off.

3D Touch to adjust AirDrop reception

Shortcut for personal hotspot

Personal Hotspot is a cellular setting that allows you to create a WiFi hotspot using your iPhone’s cellular data connection. This will allow you to connect laptops and other devices to this network to connect to the Internet. This feature must be enabled by your mobile company, but all major companies now support the feature.

Although it eats up your mobile data and depends on your mobile network speed, adding an Internet connection to your devices anywhere LTE is available is a great productivity booster. Also, just using your iPhone to add connections for friends and business associates will definitely increase your popularity.

Anyway, use this shortcut to quickly Enable this hotspot (Discoverable) or turn off (Unable to discover).

Note that for everyone to participate, iOS requires the use of passwords for these personal hotspots. You must go to SettingPersonal hotspotWifi network password.

Personal Hotspot setting screen

Screen Recording Shortcut

One can add a screen recording control to the Control Center, as we explained in the previous post linked above. After Screen Recording in your Control Center panel, use 3D touch on the icon and voila!

  • Select the destination for the recording.
    • Not too long ago, one could only save screen recordings to the iPhone’s camera roll. However, one can now stream to Facebook Live from a screen recording, and even the My Verizon iOS app wants me to stream the screen to its Diagnostics feature! Note that the shortcut says Start recording if the destination is a photo gallery, but Start broadcastingif you go to Facebook.
  • Do you want to speak while recording your iPhone screen? This button turns on the microphone to unmute sound during screen recording.
Shortcuts for Screen Recording

Note that the list of apps listed here will depend on what is currently installed on your iPhone. Since I have Facebook and My Verizon installed, those two apps show up. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find an exact list online of all the apps that work with screen recording in iOS.

Shortcut Notes

Another useful add-on to the Control Center is the Notes control. The main shortcut opens a new note, but if you often use the checklist feature in Notes, 3D tapping the Notes icon in Control Center will create a new note with the checklist!

Notes 3D Touch Shortcuts

Alternatively, you can start a new note with a photo or with a sketch. These 3D Touch shortcuts in Control Center are a great time saver. While 3D touch is mostly useful, it can sometimes cause problems. Read my post on what to do if you can’t delete apps due to 3D Touch. Please let us know in the comments if you have questions or suggestions! Interesting!

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