Apple instructs iPhone X owners to swipe up from the bottom edge of the display and pause in order to bring up the iOS app switcher. But there are faster, undocumented methods of opening the app switcher which don’t require performing this clunky gestural action.

Apple’s user manuals, tutorial videos and marketing materials describe opening the app switcher by swiping halfway up before pausing for a moment.

Apple’s official app switcher gesture is clunky and a bit on the slow side

But Apple isn’t telling you about the faster ways to get to your recent apps.

How to open iPhone X app switcher faster

There are two methods for faster app switcher access on iPhone X:

  • Swiping right at a slight upward angle
  • Swiping up and over

Here’s how you perform these useful, time-saving gestures.

Swiping right at an upward angle

This is my preferred way of opening the app switcher on iPhone X.

Start by touching the lower-left corner of the display, then swipe at a slight upward angle to reach the imaginary point on the rightmost side, about half an inch up from the bottom.

Swiping like this does the trick

The best way to visualize this is swiping from the bottom left corner of the Dock on your Home screen towards the position of the rightmost app icon in the bottom row.

This gesture also works great from any open app, like Safari

The app switcher will move into view immediately.

Swiping up and over

You don’t need to swipe halfway up as Apple would have you believe: just swipe up and over.

The best thing about this method is that you can actually swipe up as little as a fraction of an inch before moving the finger abruptly to the right side at a sharp 90-degree angle.

TUTORIAL: How to use app switcher with 3D Touch

Just like that, the app switcher should swoosh into view. Again, swipe a little bit up then right in a quick slide. Easy to memorize, even easier to accomplish—what’s not to love about it?

Swipe a little bit up then right in a quick slide

This gesture is definitely more intuitive than the Apple-sanctioned method. However, because it’s a two-step move, it takes slightly more time to accomplish than swiping right at an angle.

These gestures will take some time getting used to, but they’re worth it.

Wrap-up time!

There you go, boys and girls.

No longer do you need to swipe up, then wait half a second before the app switcher shows up. You’re wholeheartedly recommended to memorize both gestural actions laid out in this tutorial to get faster to that cards-style carousel of your recent apps.

TUTORIAL: 2 ways to switch between apps on iPhone X

And that’s all there’s to it!

Now check out our selection of ten useful iPhone X gestures and shortcuts that our own Andrew O’Hara highlighted in his hands-on video walkthrough embedded below.

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If you’ve come across other useful iPhone X tips, share them in comments!

Need help? Ask iDB!

If you like this how-to, pass it along to your support folks and leave a comment below.

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  • SpideyRules

    Swiping up right at an angle is tricky…and swiping up and over seems to be just the same as ‘swipe up and pause’. The screen just recognizes that the finger is still on the screen. That being said, it seemed to just AS fast, but not faster…

    • 9to5Slavery

      So frustrated with the future swipes (ergonomic wise).

  • 9to5Slavery

    I can’t wait for a jailbreak…

    +switcher in the control center with commands

    + swipe up in the control center where switcher apps is, to close

    + swipe from bottom, to the MID section of screen to do a home button

    + swipe from button, with a small swipe up gesture to get the control center

    + swipe up to activate instead of reaching the top to swipe down on array mess of icons. (Ergonomic)

    + Avoids toggling on AirPlay in an annoying way (iOS 11) ?

    + ability to down vote or up vote on radio station by Spotify or Apple Music radio without going into app

    + toggles that actually work fully!! Without the warning message to hit ok on Such functionality.

    Currently on iOS 9 and using home button as Touch ID taps.

    Wouldn’t mind to try on iPhone 7 or iPhone 8 (sucky rough Touch ID button)

    or iPhone X (accessibility enabled or not)

    Same concept.

    Jailbreak tweak for mid screen swipe down on iPhone X to toggle Notification Center instead of reaching all the way to an awkward corner, wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

    • triggerhappypunk

      Wow, that was super helpful, the angle swipe works great. Thank you!

    • SpideyRules

      This seems like a very long, winded ad for CCQuick Pro…

      • 9to5Slavery

        I am a huge advocate for it.
        I can also list Auxo or similar ones. But this is just good.

        If it caught your or others interest then that’s good.

        Just waiting for that iOS 11 jailbreak so I don’t have to suffer with lower iOS that can’t push HEVC or H.265

  • MSiqueira

    I noticed the little (purple?) light blinking almost all the time at the notch.
    Why does it keep blinking?
    What does it mean?

    • SpideyRules

      I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that’s the facial recognition.

      • 9to5Slavery

        Yeah ar improving I bet

    • Fanboy 

      It’s probably the infrared sensor or one of the sensors that emits a light at a frequency that the human eye can’t see, but a camera can capture it. Which is why we will never see that light when staring at the iPhone X but a camera will always capture it.

      • techfreak23

        You can actually see the infrared sensor going off when you’re in almost complete darkness.

    • techfreak23

      It’s a red light and it’s the infrared sensor scanning your face. It should only do it when using FaceID or animojis.

  • [RECON1]

    You can just swipe from left to right towards the bottom of the dock as well

  • DD™

    Very cool. Thank you.

  • burge

    It might be clunky but the only reason I ever go to this is when I need to manually force shutdown an app because I might have an issue with it other than that I don’t bother with the app switcher. And I don’t have any issue ever opening the switcher when I need too.