A lot of users post on Apple’s support forums and elsewhere about malfunctioning home button. “Home button not working” is a common theme in many support forums dealing with iPhones and iPads; especially the iPhone. Things have changed considerably but the issues still surface.
Prolonged use of the home button under varied conditions (sweaty fingers, moisture, dust, polluted environment etc.) can cause issues that make the home button erratic. Accidental drops can also do that. If you could reduce tapping the home button, it is going to work without a problem for a longer time. But how to do that?
iOS accessibility lets you emulate the home button press using on-screen keys. You will find this under Settings → General → Accessibility → AssistiveTouch.
But you can also fix this with two more tweaks. We’re taking a look at these tweaks.
Never Press the Home Button Again: Menu Button Emulator
Menu Button Emulator is very similar to AssistiveTouch but it differs in one aspect: the tweak puts a home button alternative right on the screen. So you have one-tap access to home button’s functionality. There are no settings to configure, no features to change or tweak.
After you install Menu Button Emulator, you get this on-screen home button. Tapping it is akin to pressing the home button. This way, you can almost refrain from using the home button all the time.
If you wan to double-tap the home button, you just press and hold on the on-screen home button. That emulates the double-press.
Menu Button Emulator is available on Cydia’s BigBoss. It’s a free tweak.
Triple Click and Other Actions: Activator
But of course the home button is far more powerful than that. A long-press opens Siri. Triple click can be configured to perform a function like enable Zoom mode etc. How do we get alternatives for these?
Again, we resort to Cydia tweaks. Ryan’s all-powerful Activator comes to our rescue. Instead of depending on the home button, you can actually rely on on-screen gestures (like Swipe Up on Homescreen) to open Siri. Almost every action that different gestures on the home-button triggers can be triggered from Activator.
Activator for iOS 7 is in beta (and you can download it from Ryan’s private repo). Here’s how:
Open Cydia → Manage → Sources
Tap on “Edit” and then tap on “Add”
Enter this: rpetri.ch/repo/
Tap on “Add Source”
After Cydia completes adding the repo, tap on the new repo. (rpetrich)
Find and install Activator.
So there you go: two tweaks is all you need to reduce your reliance on the home button. And these will keep your iPhone working perfectly even if your home button’s gone kaput.