How to Create a Virtual Home Button in iOS Using Assistive Touch

After testing some apps on an old iPhone 6 recently, I started to
notice the device’s Home button was becoming less and less
responsive to finger presses, especially when it came to
double-clicking it. Sure enough, after a few more days’ use, the
Home button stopped working completely.


In memory of the Home button

Now, ordinarily this would have left me in the unenviable
position of having to power off my iPhone and turn it on again
whenever I wanted to exit out of a launched app, until I
relinquished the device and sent it away for a costly repair.

Fortunately, however, the event jogged my memory of a friend
who was able to continue using their iPhone even after a drop
had left its Home button dangling by a wire (by some miracle,
Touch ID still worked). They had set up iOS’s Assistive Touch
feature as a virtual Home button while they waited until they
could afford a replacement.

If your iPhone’s Home button is dead or dying and you want to
take similar action, or if you just fancy reminding yourself
what using a Home button was like before Apple removed them
from its latest iPhones, here’s how to set up Assistive Touch
to mimic a virtual one.

Note that if your Home button is already broken and your iPhone
is stuck in a launched app, simply power off the device and
turn it on again to boot back into the Home screen and follow
these steps.

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or
    iPad.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap Accessibility.
  4. Scroll down and tap AssistiveTouch.
  5. Slide the AssistiveTouch toggle to the
    green position to turn it on.
  6. Next, under Custom Actions, select
    Single-Tap.
  7. In the next screen, tap Home to check it
    in the list.

With the AssistiveTouch virtual button enabled, simply touch
it and it will behave just like a physical Home button.


Note that you can drag it around the screen to another
location, and it will remain there until you move it again. You
can also access it in running apps, as well as the Control
Center.

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