How To Use The Magnifier Tool In iOS

Smartphones have changed the way people interact with each other and with their environment. Augmented reality and virtual reality, once they become more popular and mainstream, will add a new way for people to interact with their environment using just their phones. Of course for some people, simpler features on a smartphone like a left-handed keyboard layout are just as significant as the more revolutionary ones. The point is, the accessibility features on any smartphone that help people lead better lives. There’s a neat magnifier tool in iOS that lets you magnify or zoom in on a real life objects.

The magnifier tool in iOS was added last year in iOS 10. In iOS 11, it’s much easier to access it via a toggle in the Control Center.

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Magnifier Tool In iOS 10

To access the magnifier tool in iOS 10, open the Settings app. Go to General>Accessibility>Magnifier.

ios accessibility settings 2

Turn the magnifier on here. Once turned on, you can use it by clicking/tapping the home button three times.

magnifier tool ios

Magnifier Tool In iOS 11

In iOS 10, you have to enable the magnifier tool before you can use it. That’s not the case in iOS 11. All you need to do is add the magnifier toggle to the control center and, open it from there.

Open the Settings app and go to Control Center. Tap Customize Controls. From the list of toggles available, add Magnifier. Return to your home screen. Whenever you need to use the magnifier tool, swipe up to open the Control Center and tap the magnifier button.

magnifier control center ios

The Magnifier Tool

The magnifier tool looks a lot like the camera, complete with a shutter that can take photos. The photos however aren’t saved to your camera roll. You can pan around once you’ve taken a photo but that’s about it. The slider lets you manage the zoom level and the lock icon lets you lock focus. If you’re looking at something in low light, you can turn on the flash to get a better picture.

magnifier ios

The tool is essentially the camera app except the pictures you take aren’t going to be saved. To return to the magnifier app after taking a picture, tap the shutter button.

Because this isn’t a photo taking tool, the quality isn’t too great, especially if you zoom in too much. If you’re using it to read the fine print on say, a package insert from a medicine, you will be able to read it comfortably. It’s good that Apple’s added a far easier way to open the tool.