iPhone 6s Camera lifestyle image 001

Whenever an awesome photo opportunity presents itself, I instinctively grab my iPhone, launch the Camera app and press the shutter button.

But boy, way too many times did I find myself in the wrong camera mode. One time, I would realize I was shooting video instead of taking a great picture. Other times I would snap a selfie, whereas I wanted to take a quick photo of my neighbor’s dog jumping in the air catching her frisbee.

3D Touch can help avoid such distractions when you’re in the middle of your photography moment. With a little help of 3D Touch shortcuts and gestures, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus owners will hopefully never miss that important shot again.

3D Touch lets you take a selfie or start shooting video from the Home screen, review the photos you’ve taken without leaving the Camera app, play Live Photos with a press and more. In this tutorial, we’ll take you through every 3D Touch-enhanced feature that’s available to iPhone photography fans in Apple’s built-in Camera app.

Snap a selfie, start shooting video and more, from the Home screen

With 3D Touch, it’s easy to shoot a video, snap a selfie or jump straight into a camera mode wit a press of the Camera icon. In the shortcut menu that appears, the following options are available: Take Selfie, Record Video, Record Slo-Mo and Take Photo.

iOS 9 3D Touch Home screen shortcuts Camera iPhone 6s screenshot 001

The Take Selfie shortcut launches the Camera app and activates your iPhone’s front-facing camera, so you can instantly take a selfie with a tap of the Shutter button. The Take Photo shortcut launches Camera and activates your iPhone’s rear camera so you can take a high-resolution image in the default Photo mode.

The Record Video and Record Slo-Mo shortcuts take you straight into Camera’s standard and slow-motion video capture mode, respectively.

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Review, edit, share, favorite or delete the photos you’ve taken

Every time you take a photo, you can take a quick glance at it without launching Photos. Simply tap the photo thumbnail in the lower left corner of the Camera app. To get back to Camera, you must tap the Done button. So, two taps total. With 3D Touch, one gesture lets you preview the photos you’ve taken while you’re still taking new ones.

iOS 9 3D Touch Camera image preview iPhone 6s screenshot 002

Press the thumbnail image in Camera and the last photo you’ve taken will pop up, along with a scrubber to help you navigate photos you took earlier. Without releasing the finger, swipe left and right to review your previous photos. Simply let go to continue taking photos.

iOS 9 3D Touch Camera image preview iPhone 6s screenshot 003

To open the photo, press a little deeper to pop into Camera’s dark editing interface, seen above. From there, you share, edit, favorite or delete your image. To get back to the camera, tap Done, or hit All Photos to see everything in the Photos app.

3D Touch photo previews also work in landscape mode…

iOS 9 3D Touch Camera image preview iPhone 6s screenshot 004

…as does Cameras’ built-in photo editing interface.

iOS 9 3D Touch Camera image preview iPhone 6s screenshot 005

Play a Live Photo

Though not strictly a feature of the Camera app, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus owners can press the thumbnail image of the Live Photo to play it (if your device doesn’t have 3D Touch, simply touch and hold the Live Photo).


And when you set a Live Photo as the wallpaper on your Lock screen, you can press the display while on the Lock screen to play your Live Photo wallpaper.

Related 3D Touch tutorials

The following 3D Touch tips and tricks also might interest to you:

Feel free to tell us about your favorite 3D Touch shortcuts and share your own 3D Touch tips and tricks in the comment section below.

Send us your tutorial submissions at [email protected].

  • Thanks! I didn’t know about the quick preview feature 😀

  • diggitydang

    Wish they gave us the 3D Touch option on the lock screen – I use the swipe up from the lockscreen most of the time and that has the same issue as just touching the icon and being in the wrong mode. To me, Apple used to think this sort of thing out further to achieve a more consistent experience. I don’t want to be the guy that brings Steve Jobs’ name back into it but he held everyone to such a high standard and that I don’t believe is there anymore. Coupled with the pressures of Android, I think Apple has lost its way and who they are.

    • Jackson Grong

      iOS 10 will be all about force touch.

      • iPhoneWINS

        you mean 10.1.2