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A list of all the useful 3D Touch iPhone features you forgot about

Published Apr 17th, 2018 1:52PM EDT
iPhone X Features
Image: AP/REX/Shutterstock

After more than a decade, Apple’s iPhone is arguably still the most user-friendly smartphone line in the world. Apple’s software design is simple and intuitive, for the most part, which makes for a good user experience for iPhone owners of all ages and all levels of tech savviness. Of course, there’s only so much functionality Apple can squeeze into its iOS user interface without creating excessive clutter, and so Apple has been faced with several important design quandaries over the years. Some of Apple’s solutions have been pretty great while others have been confusing and counterintuitive — and there’s one particular solution that can be labeled both great and confusing: 3D Touch.

Of all the iOS features packed into Apple’s iPhone lineup, no feature as integral as 3D Touch goes as underused and underappreciated as 3D Touch. This, of course, is entirely Apple’s fault.

3D Touch is a feature of newer iPhone models that uses advanced sensors to measure how hard a user presses on the phone’s display. The phone can then perform different functions based on how firmly the screen is pressed. It’s a neat solution, but the problem with 3D Touch is that Apple has done a horrible job of educating users. There are no on-screen indications at all that might help people figure out where 3D Touch works and where it does not. Apple’s Tips app includes information on a few key 3D Touch features, but few people actually take the time to dig through the app.

Since savvy iPhone users who do know all about 3D Touch are well aware of how many people are missing out because of Apple’s decision to hide 3D Touch. As such, people often try to lend a hand by pointing out different 3D Touch features when the opportunity arises. Instead of waiting for the opportunity, however, one Reddit user decided to post a list of all the most useful 3D Touch features available on Apple’s iPhones.

In a thread posted in the Apple subreddit yesterday, user “thevedantjain” offered a quick and concise list of 15 different 3D Touch features that all iPhone users should be aware of. Examples include pressing firmly on the keyboard to turn it into a trackpad, pressing firmly on the “X” to clear all notifications, pressing firmly on the left edge of the display to open the app switcher on all models other than the iPhone X, and pressing firmly on message notifications to reply without having to open the Messages app.

All that and more can be found in the post on Reddit. As a reminder, here’s a list of every iPhone model that supports 3D Touch: iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content.

Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment. His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.