Substantially, 3D Touch is a new cool feature that has been introduced on Apple’s latest iPhone variants – the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. The mechanism of touching the screen with your finger has crafted to a great extent. It was actually introduced on the Apple watch as “Force Touch”, but with “3D Touch”, your phone can do different things based on how hard you press down on the screen.
Apple 3D Touch Technology
Unlike multi-touch, Apple’s 3D Touch will let you do things even without launching the app. It’s quite interesting, right. Apple calls it as ‘Peek’ and ‘Pop’. Both features will let you magnify the screen while peek allows you to preview a piece of content with a lighter press on your screen and on the other hand, pop lets you interact with the content by pressing longer on the screen.
When you press hard on the screen, a capacitive sensor under the Retina HD display measures the distance between the sensor and your finger, and combined with the iPhone’s accelerometer, the sensor determines how hard you’re pressing down. Then, it classifies them to ‘Peek’ or ‘Pop’.
So here’s the list of things that you can do with it.
Access apps without launching apps
With the 3D Touch, you can access most of the Apple’s own apps and even the third-party apps right from your home screen. Apple calls it as “Quick Actions”.
To trigger a quick action, you have to hard-press on an app’s icon on your home screen. Instead of launching the app, shortcuts will be popped-out, just tap to go directly to an action listed by the application. For instance, hard-press a phone icon to call your favorite contact, hard-press the clock app to initiate create alarm and start a timer. Hard press the Facebook or Twitter app, you’ll see shortcuts to create a post or send a new message.
Peek into Messages and Swipe Up
Now you can interact with the apps installed on your iPhone even better by pressing down lighter on the screen. When someone emails you with a link of a location or invites you for a party, you can peek at it to view the location or check your calendar and so on.
While peeking at something, you can swipe up to access more actions. For example, while peeking at a text message you can swipe up and you’ll see other shortcuts to act on the message.
A simple press on the screen will let you access to the iPhone’s front shooter to take selfies. Using peek action, you can glide through the images.
Switch between apps
Instead of double-pressing the home button to wake the app switcher, you can press down on the left edge of the screen harder and swipe to the right to open the previous app. Swipe a bit harder to the right to open the app switcher without double-pressing the home button.
Just like Apple’s own apps, the 3D Touch works precisely with the third-party apps too. That includes Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox, Instagram and so on. The third party apps are on their way including support to the 3D Touch technology. You can peek at any of the third-party apps inside or out of the box and you can do many interesting things.
Apple has introduced a new feature called the Live Photos alongside the 13-megapixel iSight camera. Just take a photo in the camera app as normal you’ll see a live icon in the setting above the viewfinder. Upon activating it, open the photos app and hard-press a photo to have it animate.
You can also set live photos as an animated lock screen. Hard-press on the lock screen after setting a live photo to make it animated.
Enter the game of World
If you want to play games in a different way, 3D Touch will let you do that as well.
In the on-stage demo at Apple’s event, we saw how in Warhammer 40,000 Freeblade you can use 3D Touch to aim fire, press deeper to zoom in and press harder to select a different weapon. We have a feeling gaming could be one of the biggest beneficiaries of Apple’s latest screen innovation.
How to adjust the sensitivity of the 3D Touch
Launch the settings, navigate to General > Accessibility>3D Touch where you can control the sensitivity of the touch or turn it off.
Though it isn’t a complete list, you can get things done differently with the 3D Touch. Apparently, Apple is involved in developing and experimenting with new input schemes on the 3D touch, so we can expect a lot of stuff to be added to their next, presumably called the iPhone 7.