How to play or pause music by tapping the back of your iPhone

Using a feature called Back Tap on iPhone 8 or later with iOS 14 or later, you can set up your iPhone to play or pause your music by simply tapping two or three times on the back of the phone. Here’s how to set it up.

Part 1: Create the Play / Pause link

To play or pause music with taps, we’ll need the help of an Apple shortcut, which is a type of automated procedure you can set up on your iPhone to perform a task. But don’t worry – in this case, the task is very simple, so creating it is easy. We will guide you through the process.

First, launch the Shortcuts app. If you can’t find it, swipe down from the center of the screen until you see a search bar. Type “Shortcuts”, then tap the Shortcuts app icon that appears.

Once the shortcuts are open, tap the “My Shortcuts” button at the bottom of the screen and select “All Shortcuts”.

On the “All Links” screen, tap the plus (“+”) button to add a new link.

On the “New Link” page, tap the ellipsis button (three dots in a circle) to begin renaming the link.

On the “Details” tab, tap the “Shortcut Name” text area, type “Play / Pause Music”, then tap “Done”.

Then, tap the “Add Action” button.

In the “Actions” panel that appears, type “Play / Pause” in the search bar, then select “Play / Pause” from the list of results below.

Next, you will see an overview of our very simple shortcut. It will read “Running”, then list the “Play / Pause on iPhone” action. When you are satisfied, tap “Done”.

After that, tap the “Play / Pause” music button in the shortcut list to try it out. The music will start playing. If you tap it again, the music will be paused. It works!

Part 2: Rear Touch Setup

Next, we will need to configure the Back Tap feature to use the “Play / Pause Music” link we just created. To do this, open Settings.

In Settings, go to Accessibility> Touch> Touch Back.

In the “Back Tap” settings, you can choose whether two or three taps will activate the “Play / Pause Music” link. Tap the one you prefer.

You will see a list of actions that can be activated if using Back Tap. Scroll down the list until you get to the “Links” section at the bottom and tap on the “Play / Pause Music” link we created earlier. When it has been selected, it will have a blue check mark next to it.

Next, exit the Settings.

Tap the back of your iPhone two or three times (depending on how you’ve set it up) and the music will start playing. Tap the back again and the music will pause. You can alternate between play and pause as many times as you want. Back Tap works everywhere on the iPhone, including the lock screen, but your iPhone screen must be active for this to work. Happy listening!

RELATED: How to Initiate Actions by Tapping on the Back of Your iPhone


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