How To Customize Your iPhone Control Center (And Make It Better)
Add, remove, and create shortcuts in your iPhone’s Control Center in a few simple steps – here’s how you customize the iPhone Control Center.
iOS 11 saw major enhancements to Control Center. If you’re not familiar with it, Control Center is the drop-down sheet with shortcut buttons to things like flashlight, camera, timer, Airplane Mode, Bluetooth, AirPlay Mirroring and more.
On Touch ID iPhones you access Control Center by swiping up from the bottom of the screen. On the iPhone X, you access it by swiping down on the upper-righthand corner of the display. This also applies to iPhone 11, iPhone XR, and iPhone XS series handsets and newer – so any with Face ID.
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Control Center has been a useful tool in iOS for a few generations now. But with iOS 11, Apple allowed users to customize the shortcuts available in Control Center for the first time. This customization made Control Center a much more useful feature. And to start organizing yours to your exact specifications, simply follow the steps at the top of this post.
By default, you’ll see Apple’s chosen shortcuts in Control Center:
Camera, Alarm, Low Power Mode toggle, Notes, Screen Recording, Voice Memos, Wallet, Guided Access, Apple TV Remote, Stopwatch, Flashlight, Calculator, Accessibility Shortcuts, Home, Do Not Disturb While Driving, Magnifier, Timer, and Text Size controls.
These are useful, granted. But you might want to add your own. I mean, how often do you use the flashlight anyway? Then again, if you do use the iPhone’s flashlight a lot, you need to know about these iPhone flashlight tricks!
How To Customize The iPhone Control Center
Customizing the iPhone Control Center is pretty easy. Here’s how to do it:
- Launch the Settings app on your iPhone.
- Tap Control Center.
- On the Control Center screen, tap Customize Controls.
- On the next screen, you’ll see shortcuts divided into two lists: “Included Controls” and “More Controls”. The “included” list refers to shortcuts currently in your Control Center and the “more” list refers to additional shortcuts you can add.
- To remove a current shortcut, tap the red minus button and the shortcut will be sent to the “more controls” list and not show up in your Control Center any longer.
- To add a new shortcut in your Control Center, under the “more controls” header, tap the green plus button next to any shortcut. This will send it to the “included” list, meaning it’s been added to your Control Center.
- You can also rearrange the order any “included” (aka active) shortcuts appear in Control Center by tapping and holding the grip bars to the right of the shortcut and then moving it up or down the list.
Once you are done, simply close the Settings app and your new Control Center layout will be ready to go! And do keep in mind you can always go back to Step #1 at any time to customize Control Center again in the future.
My MOST-USED iPhone Control Center Settings (And How To Add Them)
#1) Skip, Pause, or Rewind Music Controls
This Control Center control lets you control your music.
- Tap the Play button to play a song.
- Tap the Pause button to pause a song.
- Tap the Skip button to skip to the next song.
- Press lightly on the Skip button to fast forward.
- Tap the Rewind button to start a song over.
- Press lightly on the Rewind button to rewind.
#2) Screen Mirroring Control
This Control Center control lets you mirror your iPhone’s screen on another device.
- Tap the Screen Mirroring control.
- Tap the device you want to mirror
- Tap Screen Mirroring again to disable it.
- Tap Stop Mirroring to stop mirroring your iPhone screen.
#3) Apple TV Remote Control
This Control Center control lets you use your iPhone as a remote control for your Apple TV.
- Tap the Apple TV Remote icon to trigger the Apple TV Remote control.
- The remote will open.
- Start using it to interact with your Apple TV.
#4) Dark Mode Control
This Control Center control lets switch between dark mode and regular mode.
- Tap the Dark mode icon to switch to Dark Mode
- Tap the Dark mode icon again to switch back to the normal, light mode
#5) Do Not Disturb Control
This Control Center control lets you quickly active Do Not Disturb.
- Tap the moon in the Focus control.
- This activates Do Not Disturb while you’re driving.
- To turn it off, simply tap the moon icon again.
#6) Shazam Control
This Control Center control lets you quickly activate Shazam so it can identify music around you.
- Tap the Shazam control to tell Shazam to start trying to identify the song playing around you.
- Tap and hold the Shazam control to see your Shazam history.
Also, check out how to change the alarm sound on iPhone!
Michael GrothausApple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.
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