Use of the iPhone 4S Multi-Touch Screen for Seniors - dummies

Use of the iPhone 4S Multi-Touch Screen for Seniors

The iPhone 4S Multi-Touch screen offers seniors several methods for getting around and getting things done. You need to learn how to tap (once and twice), pinch, swipe, and flick to make the most of your iPhone.

  • Tap once. To open an application on the Home screen, choose a field such as a search box, select an item in a list, select an arrow to move back or forward one screen, or follow an online link, tap the item once with your finger.

  • Tap twice. Use this method to enlarge or reduce the display of a web page or to zoom in or out in the Maps app.

  • Pinch. As an alternative to the tap-twice method, you can pinch your fingers together or move them apart on the screen when you’re looking at photos, maps, web pages, or e-mail messages to quickly reduce or enlarge them, respectively.


    You can use the three-finger tap to zoom your screen to be even larger or use multitasking gestures to swipe with 4 or 5 fingers. This method is handy if you have vision challenges.

  • Drag to scroll (known as swiping). When you press your finger to the screen and drag to the right or left or drag up or down, the screen moves. Swiping to the right on the Home screen, for example, moves you to the Spotlight screen (the iPhone search screen). Swiping down while reading an online newspaper moves you down the page; swiping up moves you back up the page.


  • Flick. To scroll more quickly on a page, quickly flick your finger on the screen in the direction you want to move.

  • Tap the Status bar. To move quickly to the top of a list, web page, or e-mail message, tap the Status bar at the top of the iPhone screen.

  • Press and hold. If you’re using Notes or Mail or any other application that lets you select text, or if you’re on a web page, pressing and holding text selects a word and displays editing tools you can use to select, cut, or copy the text.

Try these methods now by following these steps:

  1. Tap the Safari button to display the web browser. (You may be asked to enter your network password to access the network.)

  2. Tap a link to move to another page.

  3. Double-tap the page to enlarge it; then pinch your fingers together on the screen to reduce its size.

  4. Drag one finger around the page to scroll.

  5. Flick your finger quickly on the page to scroll more quickly.

  6. Press and hold your finger on a word that isn’t a link. The word is selected, and the Copy/Define tool is displayed.

    (This step is tricky, so if you don’t get it right the first time, don’t worry.)


  7. Press and hold your finger on a link or an image. A menu appears with commands you select to open the link or picture, open it in a new page, add it to your Reading List, or copy it.

    The image menu also offers the Save Image command. Tap Cancel to close the menu without making a selection.

  8. Position your fingers slightly apart on the screen, and then pinch your fingers together to reduce the page; with your fingers already pinched together, place them on the screen, and then move them apart to enlarge the page.

  9. Press the Home button to go back to the Home screen.