It’s only been around for about a week, but the iPhone 15 Pro’s Action Button has quickly become one of our favorite new iPhone features in years. That’s thanks in big part to its customizability — with the ability to run a shortcut, this little button can do almost anything you want it to. From the delightfully silly to seriously useful, we’ve seen a lot of creative applications as newly minted iPhone 15 Pro owners put the new hardware to work.
Setting up the Shortcuts app to interplay with Focus modes seems to be the power user move. You can set the button to toggle on a different Focus mode based on the time of day. Or you can have it run different actions based on the current Focus mode to wring a whole lot of utility out of a single button. It’s not for the faint of heart, but YouTuber Stephen Robles has a great tutorial on setting this up.
This tutorial will also walk you through setting up the Action Button to display a menu of other shortcuts to run to get the absolute most from one little button. You can also do something similar by having the button open a Shortcuts folder to display a pop-up with icons for various shortcuts.
That’s definitely an overachiever version of Action Button customization. If you want to keep things simple, we’ve seen plenty of good ideas that put a frequently used feature at your fingertips. You can use it to toggle the orientation lock on and off, have it reset your cellular connection when it’s trying a little too hard to hold onto a weak signal or unlock your car. Or you can use it to type up quick notes without having to go find the app and interrupt your train of thought.
It doesn’t have to be all smart home shortcuts and productivity hacks, though. One Verge reader contemplated using the button to start a nightly board game with his wife. That’s just plain sweet!
This is far from an exhaustive list. For more inspiration, take a look at Matthew Cassinelli’s Action Button favorites — he’s like, the Shortcuts guy, so you know it’s good. And leave a comment here if you’ve come up with a particularly good Action Button customization on your 15 Pro. We’re all ears.
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