In a few days, Apple plans to deliver its first iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max smartphones. One of the most important innovations – in addition to faster 3 nm SoCs, improved cameras and a new titanium housing – is the new action button, which replaces the switch that has been built into the iPhone since the beginning, with which you could put the device on silent. The “Action Button” now offers significantly more options, which takes some getting used to.
Apple Watch Ultra was the model
Such a button, which can be largely freely assigned, is not new to Apple. The company first introduced it with the Apple Watch Ultra. Here, however, the new button does not replace existing switches, but is an additional one – the action button is missing on the regular Apple Watch models such as the current Series 9. Operation on the iPhone is now carried out by long-pressing the new button that is located above the volume buttons – Apple has set this up so that it is not triggered accidentally. The activation of the respective function via the Dynamic Island is displayed on the screen.
Apple currently provides nine different functions – with the ninth allowing virtually endless possibilities. In addition, apps can also use the button. Apple does this in the camera application, giving the iPhone its own extremely practical shutter button for the first time. All it takes is a simple press.
The functions of the action button
The standard function remains muting: a long press and the iPhone switches to vibration alarm and vice versa. The alternative assignments are accessibility (with functions such as VoiceOver, Zoom or AssistiveTouch), camera (opening the camera app), flashlight (flash on the back stays on permanently), focus mode (switching on and off), magnifying glass function (via the camera), voice memos (recording is started or stopped) and the translation app – but Apple only plans to add the latter in a future iOS 17 update.
The most exciting function is probably feature number 9: the ability to assign shortcuts to the action button. This allows you to perform any combination of shortcuts, be it controlling multiple HomeKit devices, sending a specific message, playing a desired playlist or triggering a previously selected app. The possibilities are endless here.
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