How to Add Accessibility Features to the iPhone & iPad Control Center (iOS 13 & iPadOS)

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

With iOS 13 and iPadOS, Apple offers more accessibility settings than ever before. Beginning with iOS 11, iPhone and iPad users could customize their devices' Control Centers to include the apps they use the most. For those with mobility issues, the deaf and hearing impaired, and the blind and visually impaired, Apple's accessibility features are a great choice to add to the Control Center. There are many settings to choose from, including RTT/TTY phone call access, an LED flash rather than an audible alarm for alerts, assistive touch, braille, a magnifying glass, and much more. Let's get started learning how to add Accessibility Shortcuts to the Control Center on your iPhone and iPad so you can have the features, tools, and settings you need at your disposal. 

Related: How to Use Your iPhone as a Magnifying Glass 

If you'd like to learn how to make your headphones and AirPods louder and more clear, we've written about how to turn on and customize Headphone Accessibility settings. For more great, free Apple device tutorials, check out our Tip of the Day

How to Customize the Control Center on the iPhone & iPad

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Control Center.

    iphone settingscontrol center
  3. Tap Customize Controls.
  4. To add a control, tap the green + sign
  5. To remove a control, tap the red - sign, and then tap Remove.

    customize iphone control center appstap plus to add a feature and minus to take one away
  6. Here you can see I've added the Accessibility Shortcuts to my Control Center. 

    add accessibility features to iphone

How to Activate iPhone & iPad Accessibility Features from the Control Center

  1. First, open the Control Center:​ 
    On the iPhone X and later, swipe down from the upper-right corner of your screen to open the Control Center. 
    On earlier versions of the iPhone, swipe up from the bottom of the display. 
    On iPads with a Home button, double-click the Home button. 
    On iPads with no Home button, swipe down from the upper-right corner of the display. 

    ios 11 control centercontrol center
  2. Tap the Accessibility Shortcuts icon.
  3. Now you'll need to enable Accessibility features. Tap Open Settings to Enable Accessibility Shortcuts.

    accessibility features in control centeraccessibility shortcuts in control center
  4. Tap the Accessibility Shortcut you want to include in the Control Center; in this example, I've chosen Zoom.

    verizon phones for seniors
  5. You'll see the shortcuts you chose the next time you open Accessibility Shortcuts from the Control Center.
  6. Tap the name of the Accessibility Shortcut to use it.

    tap name of accessibility shortcut to use

Let me know in the comments which Accessibility Features you added to your iPhone's Control Center, and which ones are your favorites! If you use the zoom feature on your Apple Watch, keep in mind that some users find that their Apple Watch screen zooms in by itself

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Author Details

Leanne Hays's picture

Author Details

Leanne Hays

Leanne Hays is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and has written hundreds of in-depth how-to and troubleshooting articles. She's a former Associate Editor for iPhone Life magazine, and has written for the Iowa Source, as well as web content for education marketing. Leanne has an associate's degree in education, with a focus on curriculum development, as well as a bachelor's degree in science. She has over nine years of experience with SEO, social media management, and web development and writing. Despite years of web work, Leanne is by no means an early adapter; she's only owned a smartphone for five years, which makes her highly sympathetic to the learning curve of new iPhone owners. She enjoys making reader's lives easier and putting her education experience to work by walking them through the most practical ways to use Apple devices, step-by-step.

In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.