How to Disable the Reachability Gesture on iPhone

How to Disable the Reachability Gesture on iPhone

Accessibility helps on iPhones with large screens. But it is also a major annoyance. I always end up triggering this damn gesture accidentally when switching applications on new iPhones. And I bet I’m not the only one. Of course, you will also want to disable the accessibility gesture on your iPhone.

Disable accessibility Featured iPhone

If you’re sick and tired of the kick accessibility without wanting it, or if your hands are big enough to make the gesture useless in the first place, turn it off.

Let’s see how. But on top of that, I also want to go through a number of other annoying gestures and features that you can modify or delete for a better experience on the iPhone.

Disable accessibility on iPhone

The option to turn off accessibility is in the accessibility settings of your iPhone. On iOS 12 and earlier, you had to go to iPhone Settings> General> Accessibility to access this setting. But Apple has changed things a little with iOS 13. So here are the steps to disable the accessibility gesture on the iPhone.

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone. Then scroll down and tap Accessibility.

Disable Iphone 1 accessibility

2nd step: Press Touch in the Physical and Motor section.

Disable Iphone 2 accessibility

Step 3: Turn off the switch next to accessibility.

Disable accessibility for Iphone 3

And that’s all. Accessibility is now disabled on the iPhone. You can finally switch between apps whatever you want without pulling the whole screen down!

If you want to activate the gesture later, go to the same location in iPhone Settings> Accessibility> Touch, then turn on the switch next to Accessibility.

Other troublesome gestures and features

The iPhone also has many other gestures and features that could bother many of you. The following is not an exhaustive list, but these are some that I find most annoying.

Haptic Touch

3D Touch has fallen out of favor on the iPhone. You now get Haptic Touch in its place. But if you find that Haptic Touch fires too quickly when you press and hold an item, you can actually slow it down.

Go to iPhone Settings> Accessibility> Touch> Haptic Touch. Set the touch duration to slow.

Disable accessibility for Iphone 4

You can check if the slower duration works for you by practicing the gesture on the image in the Tactile duration test section of the same screen.

Shake to cancel

Much like accessibility, it’s pretty easy to fire up the Shake to Undo dialog. If you barely use this feature, turn it off.

Go to iPhone Settings> Accessibility> Tap. Scroll down, then turn off the button next to Shake to cancel.

Disable accessibility for Iphone 5

Point: Instead of using Shake to cancel, swipe three fingers to the left of the screen to cancel changes to the text.

Motion effects

The iPhone is full of whimsical motion effects. They help make things more pleasant when switching between apps or highlighting the app picker, for example.

But after a while, these movement effects age after a while and make a lot of rather shaky gestures to perform.

Why not go straight to the point and withdraw them? I find that my iPhone (and also my iPad) is much more vivid with these motion effects disabled.

Go to iPhone Settings> Accessibility> Movement. Turn on the switch next to Reduce motion.

Disable accessibility Iphone 6

Additionally, you can minimize motion effects when swiping back and forth between screens in apps – turn on the switch next to Reduce crossfade transitions.

Control center

The Control Center gives access to a bunch of useful commands. But it’s accessible from everywhere – including the lock screen. Not only can it accidentally trigger things, but it also poses problems for the security of your iPhone.

To disable access to the Control Center on the lock screen, go to iPhone Settings> Face ID / Touch ID and Passcode. Scroll down to the Allow access when locked section, then turn off the switch next to Control Center.

Disable Iphone 7 accessibility

You can further restrict the Control Center to the Home screen only – go to iPhone Settings> Control Center, then disable the button next to Access Within Apps.

Haptic feedback

The iPhone provides haptic feedback when interacting with certain elements of the user interface – such as a scrollable date picker – courtesy of the integrated Taptic Engine.

But having to go through these vibrations every time I wanted to set recurring reminders in Google Tasks, for example, just prevailed over me.

Go to iPhone Settings> Sound and Haptic. Scroll down and then turn off the switch next to System Haptics.

Disable accessibility Iphone 8

This should permanently disable these annoying vibrations.


The accessibility gesture did not bother me on older iPhones with Touch ID. But the way it is set up to fire on iPhones with Face ID is difficult at best. You can’t really blame Apple. I cannot think of any other place to implement the gesture. But on the brightest side, it’s just easy to turn off.


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Last updated on April 21, 2020

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