3D Touch in App Switcher to return to iOS 11
According to Apple executive, Craig Federighi.
Update 10/09/2017: iOS 11.1 Beta 2 has added back the 3D touch app-switching gesture. This means that it will most likely be coming in the 11.1 update, although that is not guaranteed at this time.
According to an email obtained by MacRumors, Apple executive Craig Federighi confirmed that the popular user feature gesture referred to as “3D Touch app switch gesture” will be returning within a future “iOS 11.x update.”
The gesture, which was removed from the latest version of iOS due to an apparent technical constraint, provided users with a convenient way of getting from the multi-tasking screen on iPhones and has been a part of 3D-Touch equipped Apple devices since iOS 9. The simplicity of the gesture, which has been a part of 3D-Touch equipped Apple devices¹ since iOS 9 and required only a firm press on the left edge of the screen and a flick to the right, making it a popular and missed feature by users. Until the aforementioned update when it is returned to an iteration of iOS 11, users will have to use the old tried-and-true method of bringing up the app switcher, double-tapping the home button on the device. If the gesture is not returned by the time that the iPhone X — which does not have a physical “home” button — is released later this year, users will have to swipe up on the virtual home bar of the device, pausing in the middle of the screen, to trigger the app-switcher/multi-tasking.
The lack of a physical home button on the iPhone X has resulted in some concern by prospective purchasers, who are concerned that the gesture required to access the app-switcher appears to feel unnatural and awkward. This has led to some being grateful for the announced eventual return of the 3D Touch alternative option.
The email, authored by Federighi, to MacRumors also stated that the gesture was removed from iOS 11 due to a “technical constraint” and the explanation was followed by an apology from Federighi to users for the “inconvenience.”
A full copy of the supposed email exchange, which MacRumors can confirm did indeed come through mail servers with an IP address range linked to Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California, can be found on MacRumor’s website.
¹: iPhones ranging from the 6s (including their respective “Plus” varients) onwards have been equipped with 3D-Touch.