Monday, May 20, 2024

How to use the iPhone 15 Pro’s action button

If you pick up an iPhone 15 Pro or Pro Max, you’ll notice one thing missing: the mute switch. It’s been a fixture on iPhones since the very beginning, but the 15 Pro models have swapped it out for a new button that’s dubbed the Action Button

Like the Action Button on the Apple Watch Ultra series, you can customize it to do almost anything you want. It can open up a specific mode on your camera, turn on your flashlight, and, if you’re crafty, even order your favorite seasonal beverage from your neighborhood Starbucks. 

Here’s how it works. (I followed these steps using an iPhone 15 Pro running iOS 17.)

The first thing to know is just how the Action Button works. 

To perform whatever action you assign to the button, you’ll need to long press it; a regular short press will just confirm whatever setting you have it customized to control. By default, it’s assigned to mute and unmute your ringer, just like the mute switch. So using it right out of the box goes like this:

If you like the mute feature, you can leave well enough alone — or you can get in there and have some fun. Go to Settings > Action Button, and you’ll see a bunch of options at your disposal. In addition to silent mode, they are:

Those are the basics, and they alone give you a lot of options. But if you want to really go for it, you can set it to activate a Shortcut that can do practically anything you want. 

For example, let’s say you’re a fan of a particular fall beverage from your favorite corporate coffee chain. This is just an example; you can use this as a template for any other Shortcut you want to play with.

Got an even better idea? I would love to hear about it. Tag me on Threads @allisonjo1 with your best Action Button customization — the more unhinged, the better — and I’ll give you a virtual high five.


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