iPhone and iPad

The iPhone Cheat Sheet: Every iOS Shortcut You Should Know About

Tim Brookes Updated 10-09-2018

The more you use iOS, the more you get used to its time-saving tricks—and the more you take them for granted. That’s why we’ve produced a cheat sheet that will help you get acquainted with both touch-based and keyboard-based shortcuts for iPhone and iPad.


You don’t need an iPad Pro with a Smart Keyboard to make use of keyboard shortcuts on iOS. Both the regular iPad and iPhone models also support shortcuts, though you’ll need to find a Bluetooth keyboard first The Best iPad Keyboard Cases for Using Your iPad as a Laptop An iPad keyboard case can help you work more efficiently. Here are the best iPad keyboard cases for the iPad Pro, iPad Air, and more. Read More .

iOS and Keyboard Shortcuts

Most of the keyboard shortcuts you’re used to using on your Mac will work on your iPad Pro, iPad, and iPhone. Some apps have specific keyboard shortcuts. You might want to check any official manuals for third-party apps not mentioned here to further speed up your workflow.

If you’re using the iPad Pro with Smart Keyboard, or an iPad and wireless Apple keyboard, you’re all set to go. If your Bluetooth keyboard is aimed at Windows use, you’ll need to get used to substituting particular keys.

The two most common substitutions are Ctrl in place of Apple’s Cmd, and Alt in place of Option. The layout may also be different, depending on your localization. Apple keyboards place the @ symbol on Shift + 2, for example. This is different than the standard UK layout.

Some of these shortcuts may not work, or may only work on the iPad Pro. In particular, the iPad Pro has a useful shortcut where holding down the Cmd key shows all available shortcuts for a given app. Try it in Safari, on the Home screen, or even in a third-party app like Slack.


Touch-Based iOS Shortcuts

Touch ShortcutDescription
Navigation Shortcuts
Tap time/status barQuickly scroll to the top of the page or list
Swipe from top of screenAccess Today screen/Notification Center
Swipe from bottom of screen (not iPhone X)Access Control Center
3D Touch and swipe from leftAccess the app switcher
Typing Shortcuts
Double-tap SpaceInsert space with period
3D Touch and scroll keyboardMove cursor with precision
Tap and hold keyAccess alternate symbols or characters
Double-tap ShiftEnable caps lock
Tap and hold emoji/language keyAccess keyboard settings, orientation, and languages
3D Touch "Send" buttonAccess "Send with effect" menu (iMessage only)
Browsing Shortcuts
3D Touch link/imageOpen link or image to preview
Tap and hold link/imageAccess context menu
Tap and hold RefreshQuickly access Request Desktop Site option
Tap and hold Tabs buttonAccess tab context menu to close or open tabs
Tap and hold Bookmarks buttonQuickly add item to Reading List or Bookmarks
Tap and hold Reader Mode buttonEnable Automatic Reader View for specific websites
Home Screen Shortcuts
Swipe down on home screenSearch iPhone
Swipe right on home screenAccess Today screen and widgets
Tap and hold appMove or delete apps
3D Touch appJump to app function or share App Store link
3D Touch folderRename folder
iPhone X Shortcuts
Swipe up from bottom of the screenGo to Home screen
Swipe up from bottom and flick rightAccess App Switcher
Pull down from top-right corner of screenAccess Control Center
Pull down from top-left of screenAccess Today/Notification Center
iPad Shortcuts
Four finger swipe right/leftSwitch apps right/left
Five finger pinchAccess Home screen
Four finger swipe upAccess app switcher
Pull keyboard apart to left and rightUse split keyboard mode

Keyboard Shortcuts for iOS

Keyboard ShortcutDescription
Global iOS Shortcuts
Alt + TabSwitch apps using the App Switcher
Cmd + HGo to the Home screen
Cmd + SpaceSearch for something
Cmd (Hold)Display list of available shortcuts (iPad and iPad Pro only)
Text Shortcuts
Cmd + CCopy
Cmd + VPaste
Cmd + XCut
Cmd + ZUndo
Cmd + Shift + ZRedo
Cmd + ASelect all
Shift + Left/RightSelect with cursor
Option + Left/RightMove cursor to previous/next word
Option + Shift + Left/RightSelect previous/next word
General Shortcuts
Cmd + NCreate new (e.g. Contact, Reminder)
Cmd + FSearch within app
Cmd + IShow information
Cmd + B/I/UBold/Italics/Underline formatting
Safari Shortcuts
Cmd + TOpen new tab
Cmd + Shift + TReopen previously closed tab
Cmd + WClose current tab
Cmd + Shift + \Show tab overview
Cmd + LOpen location/search bar
Cmd + RReload current tab
Cmd + FFind on page
Ctrl + TabNext tab
Ctrl + Shift + TabPrevious tab
Cmd + ]Forward
Cmd + [Backward
Cmd + Shift + DAdd to Reading List
Cmd + Shift + LShow sidebar
Mail Shortcuts
Cmd + NNew message
BackspaceDelete message
Ctrl + Cmd + AArchive message
Cmd + RReply
Cmd + Shift + RReply to all
Cmd + Shift + FForward message
Cmd + Shift + JMark as junk
Cmd + Shift + LFlag message
Cmd + Shift + UMark as read/unread
Cmd + Shift + NGet new mail
Option + Cmd + FSearch mailbox
Cmd + LFilter mail
Calendar Shortcuts
Cmd + NNew event
Cmd + FSearch events
Cmd + TShow today's events
Cmd + RRefresh
Cmd + Left/RightGo to previous/next day, week, month, year
TabGo to next event
Shift + TabGo to previous event
Cmd + 1/2/3/4Go to day/week/month/year view
Notes Shortcuts
Cmd + NNew note
EnterEdit note
Cmd + EnterFinish editing
Cmd + FFind in note
Option + Cmd + FSearch list of notes
Cmd + B/I/UBold/Italics/Underline formatting
Cmd + Shift T/H/B/LTitle/Heading/Body/Checklist formatting
Option + Cmd + TCreate table
Cmd + ]Indent text right
Cmd + [Indent text left
News Shortcuts
Cmd + RRefresh news
Cmd + FSearch
Cmd + UpGo to top of page
Cmd + 1/2/3/4/5For You/Spotlight/Following/Search/Saved tabs
TabNext story

Once you’ve mastered these tricks, take a look at our ultimate iOS beginner’s guide A Complete Beginner's Guide to iOS 11 for iPhone & iPad Here's everything you need to know to get started with iOS 11. Read More for an in-depth look at your device’s various functions. You’ll learn how to back up your device, privacy essentials, and making the most of Apple mainstays like iCloud and Siri.

Related topics: Cheat Sheet, iPhone Tricks, Keyboard Shortcuts.

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  1. Greg
    June 28, 2020 at 2:36 pm

    Holding finger on spacebar enables cursor control, best tip I ever received.