Apple Maps tip: zooming without pinching

Apple Maps for iOS teaser 001

iOS’s Reachability feature is a nice addition for those who wish to operate their iPhone with just one hand. With Reachability, customers can easily reach the top corners of the iOS user interface by double-tapping the Home screen button.

I use Reachability on a regular basis, but wish that more developers designed their apps with one-handed mode in mind. For instance, one-handed zooming is currently available in just a few apps, such as Google Maps and Snapchat.

On Apple Maps, you’ve always had the ability to zoom in or out of an area using the familiar pinch-zoom gesture. What you may not know is that Apple’s mapping application provides other gestures that are suitable for zooming in or out without needing to pinch open or close with two fingers, here’s how.

How to zoom in or out in Apple Maps without pinch gesture

iPhone, iPod touch and iPad:

1) Launch Apple Maps on your iOS device.

2) Go to a desired map area and then use the following gestures:

  • Zoom in—double-tap with one finger
  • Zoom out—tap with two fingers

Double tapping with two fingers may not be the easiest way to zoom out when holding your iPhone with one hand, but with the right grip it’s doable.


1) Open the Apple Maps app on your Mac.

OS X El Capitan Apple Maps Mac screenshot 001

2) Go to a desired map area and then use the following gestures:

  • Zoom in—double-tap with one finger on the trackpad
  • Zoom out—double-tap with two fingers on the trackpad

On both iOS and macOS, the scale appears briefly in the upper left corner while zooming in and out. On the Mac, you can set Apple Maps to always show the scale by selecting View → Show Scale.

Did you like this nifty tip?

If so, give us a shout-out on social media and feel free to share your favorite Apple Maps tips and tricks with fellow readers down in the comments.

Hat tip goes to iDownloadBlog reader Nick Pomes.

One-handed zooming in other apps

You may also be interested to learn how to use Snapchat’s new one-handed zoom during video capture and how to use one-handed zoom on Google Maps for iOS.

Need help? Ask iDB!

Got stuck? Not sure how to do certain things on your Apple device? Let us know at and a future tutorial might provide a solution.

Submit your how-to suggestions at