Six Hard-to-Find iPhone Shortcuts Revealed

Three-Finger Zoom

What to do: With three fingers, tap the screen twice and you'll zoom in. It doesn't matter if you're on the home screen or in an app. Perform the action again to return to normal view.

Why it's important: This feature can make it easier on the eyes. On the home screen, app icons and the words beneath them appear bigger. But the real advantage comes in the camera. If you called up your camera app using the double-click feature described above (as opposed to scrolling and calling up a feature-rich camera app like Snapture), then chances are the photo opportunity is fleeting. A three-finger double tap can zoom in on the subject.

Hold for Voice Activation

What to do: Hold the home button down until voice control activates. Then you can issue voice commands such as calling someone or playing a certain song.

Why it's important: Searching for contacts and numbers while driving is a recipe for disaster, not to mention maybe illegal. Voice commands keep you safer on the road.

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Double-Tap Safari

What to do: When surfing the Web on Safari, it's hard to read text and view images on the tiny screen. If you're using two fingers to expand the content, our hunch is that you've probably just bought your iPhone. Instead, double tap the text or pictures to fit the screen. Double tap again to return to normal.

Why it's important: Web surfing and content consumption is a lot easier and less frustrating than constantly having to pinch and reverse pinch. Your fingers will thank you, too.

Voice and Data

What to do: You've seen it in the Apple and AT&T ads. When on a voice call, you can put the call in speaker mode and then hit the home button to access other apps. It's one of the key selling points—voice and data at the same time—of the iPhone.

Why it's important: At first, it might seem odd to multi-task during a call. After a while, you'll wonder how you ever lived without it.

Tom Kaneshige is a senior writer for in Silicon Valley. Send him an email at Or follow him on Twitter @kaneshige. Follow everything from on Twitter @CIOonline.

Product mentioned in this article

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  • Apple 32GB iPhone 3GS
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