iOS 10 tidbit: “Slide to unlock” is gone, say hello to “Press home to unlock”

By , Jun 15, 2016

iOS 10 Lock screen Press home to unlock image 002

The iPhone’s familiar slide-to-unlock gesture was subjected to multiple lawsuits, but the feature itself has barely changed since the handset’s inception nearly a decade ago.

With iOS 10, however, Apple has made some plenty significant changes to the Lock screen while introducing a brand new way to get into your phone.

Because swiping to the left on the Lock screen now takes you directly to the Camera app, ”Slide to unlock” has been replaced with “Press home to unlock”.

In other words, you’re now required to physically push the Home button in order to unlock the device with Touch ID or your passcode. If your hardware lacks Touch ID or no finger has been enrolled yet, pressing the Home button will instead take you to the standard passcode prompt.

On Touch ID-enabled devices, pressing the Home button now prompts Touch ID to scan the fingerprint. The change also means you no longer can unlock your device without physically pressing the Home button, even when the Lock screen is on.

At any rate, this interesting change does acknowledge that Touch ID has become too fast to the point where it starts to interfere with the user experience.

Indeed, if I want to check out my Lock screen notifications on a pre-iOS 10 device, I must either press the Sleep/Wake button, which isn’t very practical, or press the Home button with my fingernail or one of my unregistered fingers.

iOS 10 takes care of that with a feature called Raise to Wake, which automatically lights up the screen when you raise your iPhone, giving you instant access to your Lock screen notifications.

Aside from the fact that physically pressing the Home button to unlock the device represents a major philosophical departure from the traditional slide-to-unlock mechanism, it actually might have something to do with an interesting image that leaked yesterday.

iPhone 7 Home button MobiPicker 002

As shown above, it purportedly shows an iPhone 7 with a touch-sensitive Home button that appears to sit flush with the front plate and reportedly cannot be pressed in.

Instead, users will reportedly need to perform tapping actions to invoke various functions which currently require physically pressing the Home button, such as tap and hold for Siri, double tap to see the running apps and so forth.

How do you like the new “Press home to unlock” feature on iOS 10 and does it make any sense to you, and why?

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  • I wonder what it’s gonna say on iPhone 7 with a “software” home button. Can’t press it. But you can force-touch it.

    • Dave

      That would be so cool!!
      Especially on the ForceTouch MacBooks, it feels really real…..

  • Ángel Javier Esquivel

    So if my button is broken (literally) I can’t update to iOS 10…

    • igorsky

      If your button is broken then a software update is the least of your problems.

      • Ángel Javier Esquivel

        I know, I really need to get that fixed. So i can’t update nor restore, right?

      • Wait, is that your freaking home button? How in the hell did you do that?

      • Ángel Javier Esquivel

        Fell out of my pocket, screen cracked open and the cable broke. I’m assuming the button and sensor are intact. So, it’s “fixable”

      • I think that probably there will be a way to enter the pin code cause the iPhone 5 which doesn’t have Touch ID is on compatibility list of the iOS 10 and older iPads too.

        I don’t think that Apple will forget something like this.

    • DamithH

      you can use AssistiveTouch.

      • Ángel Javier Esquivel

        I do use it

      • ptram

        Not to wake the phone under iOS 10.

    • Jonathan

      Hit the power button, then use the accessibility button to hit the home button I guess?

      • Ángel Javier Esquivel

        That’s how my phone is working right now.

    • racerhomie2

      you can still use assistive touch

      • Ángel Javier Esquivel

        I do use it.

  • Bill

    Pressing the sleep/wake button isn’t very practical? It seems practical to me and what you meant is you think it’s an inconvenience to use a different button than what you have been.

    • I agree with Christian that it is not practical. It requires me to change the way I hold my iPhone simply to accommodate the press of that button. Of course it’s nothing unbearable, but still it’s not practical imo

      • Srujan Mishra

        Seb, maybe the iPhone 7’s Home button will be 3D Touch enabled, and users can “press” the Home button, after all! That way, no one has to learn anything new.

  • It takes some getting used to which I still slide to unlock and my widgets come in. I like it though, its about time for a change.

  • Zzyzxd

    Does double pressing home button still invokes Apple Pay? If so, this can be confusing…

    • zebonaut

      no need to press anything for apple pay ; just bring the phone to the scanner and it pops up

      • Zzyzxd

        I am not saying you *have* to double-press, but you *can* do so because it is a standard iPhone feature.

  • DOOManiac

    I think somewhere along the line people forgot the purpose of the lock screen was to lock the screen – so you don’t do crap when putting the thing in your pocket. Really don’t like how swiping right from anywhere invokes the camera. That’s way too easy to happen accidentally.

  • Blip dude

    That’s awesome!! At least until, based on experience, the home button gets busted, and then how are supposed actually unlock our phones??

    • Andrieux Querido

      if you slide to the widgets on left you can click them and add your password to unlock.

  • Andrieux Querido

    I installed iOS 10 last night and when i lifted my phone i really liked that the screen got on, but WHY press home to unlock. WHY not just touch. Cmon Apple you can do this…

  • zebonaut

    Nicely thought through by Apple

  • Jamessmooth

    When I saw the keynote Monday, I wasn’t very excited and pretty underwhelmed. After looking at these articles, I’m getting more and more excited about iOS 10. I agree that pressing the home button to unlock is a nuisance, but the trade-off seems to be that you can access the camera more quickly. I’d prefer to just touch home and have it unlock however.

  • Mike T4

    Unintuitive change because of the crowded lock screen. I wish there would be a tweak to revert some of that stuff

  • Felipe Ulhoa

    Where can I get that wallpaper? Super cool

  • Bugs Bunnay

    Yay same design iphone…

  • BlackSheep_dsg

    I like the raise to wake, but the pressing to unlock sucks; why can’t I just use the sensor like in iOS 9 and below. I wish they’d at least given us the option to swap the notifications and unlock function

  • blackpanth3r

    what everyone seems to be forgetting is that, they could have done swipe up to unlock. just because that’s how it is done on Android doesn’t mean IOS can’t do it that way as well. thoughts……

    • BlackSheep_dsg

      I’d like raise to wake then use my fingerprint like on iOS 9 and below

  • Nabeel hammad

    Slide to unlock was great option

  • Variousthings3251

    Bad idea. They should place the camera to the bottom right of the screen just like we have now and slide to the left for widgets. Pressing the home button? The home button will break once and you won’t be able to unlock iPhone/iPad. I hope ‘slide to unlock’ will see its return in the Public Beta.
    R.I.P. slide to unlock 2007-2016

  • frankieryder

    Press home to unlock is one of the WORST things about iOS 10.

  • Charles

    Someone come up with a hack to put the slide back

    • Massacre of iPhones

      please see my post at the top : Work Around. Step by step to give you some touch control back.

  • parum imperium

    I absolutely hate the new home button unlock. Hate it. It works fine on the iPhone 6 – but on the iPad Air 2 it’s a totally cluster. I hate it. I want to go back to slide to unlock.

  • Massacre of iPhones

    There has got to be a lot of other people already doing this but here is the home button press to open Work around: go to settings>general>accessibility>assistive touch/turn on>customize top level menu>delete all but one of the icons, doesn’t matter which one is left>tap icon, select Home at top of popup list>Put the assistive touch button where ever you want, mine is in lower left. You now have the touch ability to unlock phone/tablet without having to use the physical home button.

    I’ve been using assistive touch for many things, I have arthritis. But for anyone, myself included, that iOS 10 has taken this away, this gives back at least the ‘feel’ of swipe to open just without the swipe.