Control your Control Center

One of Apple's smartest integrations in its new iOS iteration is the ability to have some basic settings and info at your fingertips, aptly named Control Center.

The information in Control Center is displayed in two panes:

  • Swipe down from the status bar the top to access event information such as calendar, weather, traffic advisories, stock quotes, emails, missed calls and more.
  • Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and you instantly have access to your currently playing media through iTunes, Spotify and others, AirPlay, screen brightness, basic applications (flashlight, timer/alarm, calculator and camera), and easily turn off and on things like Airplane mode, wifi, Bluetooth and other features.

Control Center panes

While all of this can be great to have at your fingertips (I know I sure love having instant access to most of these features, as I use them a lot), it can be a bit cumbersome, especially when playing games and other apps you'd like to focus your attention on. Nothing ruins productivity more on an iOS device then when you make an errand swipe and you've lost your place in what you're reading or doing. Luckily, you can manage what displays on the aforementioned swipes.

Control center screen flow

Find your Settings app and find the Control Center option to access two options: the ability to access the Control Center panes on the Lock Screen (don't worry, you'll have to unlock your phone to actually enter any of the linked apps), and Access Within Apps (handy to turn off in case you don't wish to be disturbed with errand swipes in an application like a game).

It's important to note that if you have your phone locked and you enable Control Center, someone could in theory use this as a vulnerability to enable Bluetooth. It's been well documented that leaving Bluetooth on poses a security risk, regardless of whether or not you have a Bluetooth headset paired with your phone. Of course, this requires you to leave your phone unattended for a brief period of time, but how long does it really take to do? A couple of seconds tops?

What I would hope is that for a loop hole this glaring, that Apple would force (or at least give you the option to enable) some sort of identity verification, either through TouchID or by entering in your passcode before enabling any network communications (Wi-Fi included). Call me paranoid, but the only person who should have access to my data is me.