Date-Focused Note Taking

iOS 5 Beta 3 Features New Accessibility Panel with Gesture Controls

A new option in the Accessibility settings of iOS 5 beta 3 allows users to set up a floating panel to access a variety of hardware controls and gesture-based commands without using an iPad or iPhone’s physical buttons. Once enabled in Settings->General->Accessibility->AssistiveTouch, the new menu will let you interact with four different sections: Home, Device, Gestures and Favorites. Whilst the usage of Favorites and Gestures is still unclear, users can set up custom gestures in the Settings and play with built-in gesture such as swipe and pinch. The Home tab in the floating panel (which can be repositioned on screen via drag & drop) will perform the same function of the Home button, and Device will open a sub-menu with other controls to increase / decrease volume, lock or rotate the screen, unlock rotation and virtually shake the device (to enable features such as “shake to undo” without actually shaking a device).

The new accessibility options aren’t of course meant for everyday usage (they need to be manually enabled deep down in the Settings, and they’re aimed at people having trouble using iOS’ traditional gestures and hardware buttons), but they’re rather interesting in the way they could replace hardware controls and switches on damaged devices, or provide shortcuts to areas and commands of iOS that would require a physical movement otherwise (such as the aforementioned shake gesture).

9to5mac has a video of this new panel in action, and you can check out more screenshots after the break.

Unlock MacStories Extras

Club MacStories offers exclusive access to extra MacStories content, delivered every week; it’s also a way to support us directly.

Club MacStories will help you discover the best apps for your devices and get the most out of your iPhone, iPad, and Mac. It’ll also give you access to advanced iOS shortcuts, tips and tricks, and lots more.

Starting at $5/month, with an annual option available.

Join the Club.

A Club MacStories membership includes:

  • MacStories Weekly newsletter, delivered every week on Friday with app collections, tips, iOS workflows, and more;
  • MacStories Unplugged podcast, published monthly with discussions on what we’re working on and more;
  • Monthly Log newsletter, delivered once every month with behind-the-scenes stories, app notes, personal journals, and more;
  • Access to occasional giveaways, discounts, and free downloads.