iOS 11.0 / September 19, 2017; 2 months ago (2017-09-19)
|iOS 7 and later|
|Same as iOS 7|
|Archived November 1, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.|
Control Center (or Control Centre in some countries) is a feature of Apple Inc.'s iOS operating system, introduced as part of iOS 7, released on September 18, 2013. It gives iOS devices direct access to important settings for the device by swiping a finger up from the bottom of the display. It is similar to the SBSettings tweak for iOS jailbreaking.
Control Center gives iOS users quick access to commonly used controls and apps. By swiping up from any screen – including the Lock screen (if the control center is set to be accessed from the lock screen) – users can do such things as switch on Airplane mode, turn Wi-Fi on or off, adjust the display brightness and similar basic functions of the device. It also includes a new integrated flashlight function to operate the reverse camera's flash LED as a flashlight. The flashlight feature is available on iPhones and the iPod Touch, and on iPad Pro 9.7", 10.5", and 12.9" (2017). Night Shift is available on iPhones, iPod Touches and iPads that are on iOS 9.3 or higher. On the iPhone 4, the Control Center is not transparent.
Other functions offered are the ability to turn on or off Bluetooth, and Do Not Disturb; lock the screen’s orientation; play, pause, or skip a song, and see what is playing; connect to AirPlay-enabled devices; and quickly access the clock, calculator, and camera apps. Users also have access to AirDrop, previously only available on Macs and newly added to iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch using the Lightning connector in iOS 7, as a method of transferring files between Apple devices.
In iOS 10, the Control Center was split into three pages, with one page for most of the controls (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Night Shift and others), another page for music controls, and a page for controlling HomeKit devices.
The Control Center receives a significant redesign in iOS 11, unifying its different pages into one and allowing users to 3D Touch (or long press on devices without 3D Touch) the icons for additional button options. Sliders let users adjust volume and brightness. The Control Center is customizable via the Settings app, and allows for a wider range of settings features to be shown, including cellular service, Low Power Mode, and a shortcut to the Notes app.
Control Center has received generally positive reviews. In contrast for the user having to access the Settings application to change most preferences, Darrell Etherington of TechCrunch thought that "separating [Control Center] from that function and making it accessible throughout the iOS user interface via a simple swipe up from bottom is a really big improvement."
The iOS 11 update was criticized for changing the way the buttons for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth work; more specifically, the toggles would disconnect devices from Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, while leaving the radios on. The Electronic Frontier Foundation stated that this change not only hurt battery life, but was also bad for security, describing the buttons as turning Wi-Fi and Bluetooth "off-ish" (greyed out, but not crossed out, as it would appear if switched off directly from the Settings app), as well as further criticizing the connections resuming at 5:00 am everyday.
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