Apple’s iOS 13 Signals Death of 3D Touch

Apple may be gearing up to kill off a feature that dates back to 2015. The company recently released the first beta of iOS 13 which has since been installed on many iPhones and iPads around the world. The thing is, the new software gives various devices new functions that were only afforded to those with a 3D Touch-enabled smartphone. This may mean that the pressure-sensitive feature is on its way out.

Specifically, Apple is bringing quick access to app shortcuts on your home screen in iOS 13 via a simple long-press. Before, this required a hard press via 3D Touch. But now, so long as you hold onto the icon for long enough, you’ll get access to the same shortcuts as you would with a pressure-sensitive screen.

Features mentioned in Apple’s iOS 13 feature list don’t explicitly state the need for 3D Touch. Plus, they can be used by folks without 3D Touch-enabled devices.

The death of 3D Touch has been a questionable point of interest for a few years. We saw initial evidence of the feature possibly dying off last year with the iPhone XR which comes with Apple’s Haptic Touch, a feature that simply means long pressing items in iOS gives you haptic feedback. With iOS 13, Apple will be expanding the capabilities of Haptic Touch to more than just managing notifications. You’ll be able to peak into web pages, peak into emails, access app actions, and more, all without 3D Touch.

Of course, iOS 13 hasn’t yet confirmed 3D Touch will die later this year. You can still access the features listed by using a hard press. But considering the features can now be accessed by those with an iPhone SE or XR, we should at least be ready if Apple decides not to include pressure sensitivity in the iPhone 11.