A Getting Started Tour of your iPhone

You have an iPhone.  You have used it to make calls.  But this is supposed to be a Smart Phone.  So how is is so smart?

The first task in your mission is to learn about the physical features of the device.  You want to understand the buttons and port.  You need to know how to turn it on and home.  How to go home.  And you don’t want to be embarrassed when you phone rings during a church service.

The purpose of the recipe is to provide a tour of your device.  You will learn some of the essential functions of your device. As we explore, you will see lots of references to other Recipes and Nuggets that cover topics in more detail.

Recipe #126

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Your Getting Started Tour

The Red numbers in the diagram above correspond to the numbered points below.

1 Home Button

The Home button is truly home on iPhones and iPads.  It serves multiple roles.

Press the Home Button once to:

  • Unlock your device from its sleep state.  Alternatively, you can also use the Sleep/Wake button.
  • Go to the Home screen.  The Home screen is the screen that displays the icons for your apps, e.g. Phone, Message, etc.  This will shift focus from any app you are running to the Home screen.
  • Unlock your device is you have enabled Touch ID.  See Recipe #017 Setting Up Passcodes and Touch ID.

Other Home button Actions:

The Future Home

The physical Home button is disappearing in future versions of the iPhone.  This is starting with iPhone X and later.  To unlock you will use Face ID and swipe up from the bottom of the screen to go Home.  If you want to go to the Home screen from an app, you will swipe up from the bottom of the screen.

2  Sleep/Wake Button

The Sleep/Wake button is on the upper right side of your iPhone.  It has multiple functions:

Press once to wake up your device or to put it to sleep.  See Recipe #100 Sleep and Shutdown

Press and hold to shut down your device  See Recipe #100 Sleep and Shutdown

Press twice to decline an incoming call See Recipe #125 Making and Receive Calls


3 Ring/Silent Switch

The Ring/Silent is on the left side of your phone.  It is the slider switch above your volume buttons.  It is the primary method to silence your iPhone ringer by putting it into vibrate mode.  See Recipe #101 How to Control and Silence Your iPhone Ringer.


4 Volume Buttons

The Volume Button can be used to control:

The volume of your ringer

The volume of music or videos that you play

The volume of the speaker while on a phone call.

See Recipe #101 How to Control and Silence Your iPhone Ringer.

5 Touch Screen

The Touch Screen is a significant navigation too on your iPhone.  You will use it to tap, double tap, swipe, drag, pinch and expand the items that are displayed on your screen.  It will automatically switch between Portrait and Landscape mode.  For a review of its functions see Recipe #126 Touchscreen Basics or Recipe #201 iPad and Touchscreen Basics

6 Control Center

The Control Center is an essential control panel for your iPhone and many people only discover it accidentally.  It not only provides quick access to essential apps like the Camera and Calculator, it is the ONLY play where you can turn on the flashlight.  It includes a whole host of other useful functions and with later versions of IOS, can be customized.  See Recipe #1043 Using the Control Center for Quick Access to Essential Functions.


7 Lightening Port

The Primary use of the lightening Port is for charging your iPhone or iPad.  The recommended charging approach for your device is to plug your iPhone into your charger every evening so that in the morning your wake up to a fully charged device.

Since iPhone 7 an later, the Lightening Port is also used to connect headphones and earbuds to your device.  The connection can be made from earbuds that have a lightening connector or through the use of an adapter that connects to more common audio jacks.

The Lightening Port is also used to connect your device to a computer through the USB charging cable.  You can connect to perform transfer of music, pictures, do backups and more.


8 Headphone Jack

On iPhones before version 7, use the headphone jack to connect speakers or earbuds for listening to music or hands-free phone calls.  Since iPhone 7, you will either use Bluetooth or the Lightening port to connect to speakers or earbuds.


More information about many of these topics can be found in other Recipes on the SeniorTechClub.com site.  See the links above or under Additional Information below.

Check for Understanding

Use the following questions to determine if you need to read or study this recipe.  You might already have an understanding of this topic. Following your study, answer the same questions to help you check your understanding of the skills taught in this lesson.

  1. Can you name multiple functions of the Home button on your iPhone?
  2. What is Sleep versus Shutdown?
  3. How do you control the Ringer Volume on your iPhone?
  4. What is the Control Center?

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