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How to turn on the flashlight in Android and iOS

Smartphones are the Swiss army knives of the 21st century. Whether we’re talking about iPhones or Android phones, they can do nearly anything you’d want a digital device to do, from playing music and videos to sending emails and browsing the web. Conveniently enough, they can also turn into flashlights, helping light your way in the dark. That said, it may not be obvious how to turn on the flashlight on an iPhone or Android device, since the actions or gestures vary from device to device.

This article explains how to switch on the flashlight on Android and iOS devices. It covers newer and older iPhones, and it also covers the vast majority of Android smartphones, including a special gesture for OnePlus smartphones.

Further reading

How to turn on the flashlight in iOS

If you have an iPhone with Face ID (i.e. an iPhone X or later, but not an iPhone 8 or the 2020 iPhone SE), you can turn on the flashlight in iOS by doing the following:

  1. Swipe down from the top-right corner of the touchscreen. This opens the iPhone’s Control Center.
  2. Once in the Control Center and find the flashlight icon. It’s usually in the bottom half of the Control Center, although its exact position may vary from one iPhone to another.
  3. Tap the flashlight icon.

That’s it. If your iPhone has a Home button (i.e. the 2020 iPhone SE and iPhone 8 or earlier), the process is almost identical. Instead of swiping down from the top-right corner of the touchscreen, swipe up from the bottom of the touchscreen. Then follow the first two steps as described above.

To turn off the flashlight with iOS, repeat the above process. Tapping on the flashlight icon when the flashlight is on will turn it off.

Also, you can ask Siri to turn on your flashlight. Simply say, “Hey Siri, turn on the flashlight.”

If this isn’t enough, there are a number of third-party flashlight apps available on the Apple App Store, such as iHandy’s Flashlight Ⓞ and Lemondo’s Flashlight.

How to turn on the flashlight in Android

Turning on the flashlight on Android devices is also very easy. Assuming you have Android 5.0 or later on your smartphone, here’s what you do:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the touchscreen. This opens the notification bar.
  2. Once the notification bar is open, find the flashlight icon and tap it.

It’s as simple as that. As with the iPhone, you can also use Google Assistant to switch on your Android’s flashlight. To wake up Google Assistant, hold down on the Home button. Next, say, “Okay, Google, turn on the flashlight.”

If the two quick processes above don’t satisfy you, you can also find a variety of third-party flashlight apps on the Google Play Store. They don’t really make turning on the flashlight any quicker, but they may offer a range of different functions for the flashlight. Some of the most popular include Tiny Flashlight + LED and Brightest Flashlight Free.

Lastly, if you’re using a OnePlus phone, there’s a special gesture you can use to turn on the flashlight. Here’s how you activate and use it:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Gestures
  3. Tap Toggle flashlight.
  4. With Toggle flashlight enabled, you can now use your finger to draw a V on the touchscreen. This turns on the flashlight. Repeat the gesture to turn it off.

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Simon Chandler
Simon Chandler is a journalist based in London, UK. He covers technology and finance, contributing to such titles as Digital…
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