Apple has added a new accessibility feature in iOS 14 that can perform quick actions through taps on the back of an iPhone.
There are no sensors on the back of your iPhone for your finger to fiddle with — unlike, say, a Google Pixel, which does have a fingerprint sensor on the back — but a new feature debuting in iOS 14 allows you to tap the back of your iPhone to launch different iOS actions all the same.
The “Back Tap” feature, which can be found in accessibility settings, be used to instantly pull up Control Center, summon Siri, or even run Shortcuts.
Currently, you can define gestures for double tap and triple tap on the back of your iPhone. The list is expansive: App switcher, control center, volume control, screenshot, scroll up or down, and magnifier. If you can’t find action in the predefined list, you can make a Siri shortcut and assign that shortcut to tap gestures.
— patrick. (@imPatrickT) June 23, 2020
This feature is useful when you might have greasy fingers or holding the phone in a way when your fingers might not be able to reach a certain part of the screen.
Based on feedback shared by early iOS 14 users online, the gestures are fairly accurate and even work through thick, leather cases. For now, it seems they’re limited to the iPhone X or newer models.