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Disable three iOS features you likely use only by accident

Some features only get in the way. Learn how to disable two iPhone features and one iPad feature that you probably can do without.

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Matt Elliott Senior Editor
Matt Elliott is a senior editor at CNET with a focus on laptops and streaming services. Matt has more than 20 years of experience testing and reviewing laptops. He has worked for CNET in New York and San Francisco and now lives in New Hampshire. When he's not writing about laptops, Matt likes to play and watch sports. He loves to play tennis and hates the number of streaming services he has to subscribe to in order to watch the various sports he wants to watch.
Expertise Laptops, desktops, all-in-one PCs, streaming devices, streaming platforms
Matt Elliott
2 min read

With each iteration of iOS, Apple adds new features to make iPhones and iPads more flexible and easier to use. I happily accept these improvements each year, but there are some that end up just getting in the way.

There are three features in particular -- two for the iPhone and one for the iPad -- that I use only by accident. Let's have a look at what they are and how to disable them.

1. Reachability

Reachability was introduced with the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 to help those with tiny Trump hands reach elements on the iPhone 6's larger screen. Reachability moves the screen down so that you can more easily tap, swipe or otherwise interact with something at the top of the screen. With a double-tap on the home button, the current screen slides halfway down the display.

Granted, I went through an adjustment period with my iPhone 6 but I have since grown accustomed to its larger screen dimensions and only access Reachability by accident.

To disable Reachability, go to Settings > Accessibility and turn off the toggle switch for Reachability.

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Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

2. Shake to Undo

Shake to Undo is another feature that I use only by mistake. It pops up on certain apps -- Mail and Messages most frequently for me -- and asks if I want to Undo Typing.

To disable it, go go to Settings > Accessibility. You'll find Shake to Undo a few lines above the Reachability setting discussed previously.

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Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

3. iPad multitasking

I do not use my iPad as a productivity machine. I use it to watch Netflix and my Cincinnati Reds on the MLB app, read The New York Times and play the occasional game of Ticket to Ride. I never need to do more than one of these things at a time, so the only time I engage the iPad's slide-over and split-view features is by accidentally swiping from the right edge of my iPad.

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Matt Elliott/CNET

To disable the slide-over and split-view features on your iPad, go to Settings > Multitasking and turn off the toggle switch for Allow Multiple Apps.

Are there other iOS settings you disable to keep them out of your way? Please let me know in the comments below.