Apple didn't tell us about the iPhone 15 Pro's most exciting Action Button function

iPhone 15 Pro Action Button
(Image credit: Apple)
iPHONE 15: What you need to know

One of the most unsurprising announcements at Apple's iPhone 15 launch event was that both the new iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max handsets don't have a mute switch like previous versions but instead have an Action Button, borrowed from the Apple Watch Ultra. 

Although rumors about the new Action button had been swirling for months, it's still a big change and a departure from the usual iPhone design. 

By default it does the same thing the mute switch did, turning your phone from ring to silent mode. However, that's just the beginning. Anyone with an iPhone 15 Pro or iPhone 15 Pro Max can customize this new button and assign a range of actions to it. That way you can give it a press, hold it, and gain super quick access to your camera, flashlight, and more. 

Now MacRumors has also spotted that one of the other actions you can assign to the action button is to open Apple's Translate app. For those not using Translate already, this is an app that lets you quickly and easily translate voice and text between 11 different languages – you can even download them onto your device so you don't need an internet connection. 

This means if you assign Translate to your Action button you'll be able to quickly start translating between two languages without having to open the app. The bad news is that this option won't be available until later on in the year, probably with an upcoming iOS 17 update.

Getting in on the action

We think adding the Translate app to the Action button could be invaluable, especially if you're traveling in a foreign country. 

But if that doesn't appeal or you don't want to wait for the update to roll out, then there are a range of other options to choose from that you can add to the Action button immediately, these include: 

Once you've added one of these, you need to press and hold the Action button to launch them. 

We're covering all the Apple iPhone 15 event news and reactions now that Wonderlust is over. Don't miss all our iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max, Apple Watch Series 9, Apple Watch Ultra 2, iOS 17and watchOS 10 coverage so far.

Becca Caddy

Becca Caddy is a contributor to iMore, as well as a freelance journalist and author. She’s been writing about consumer tech and popular science for more than a decade, covering all kinds of topics, including why robots have eyes and whether we’ll experience the overview effect one day. She’s particularly interested in VR/AR, wearables, digital health, space tech and chatting to experts and academics about the future. She’s contributed to TechRadar, T3, Wired, New Scientist, The Guardian, Inverse and many more. Her first book, Screen Time, came out in January 2021 with Bonnier Books. She loves science-fiction, brutalist architecture, and spending too much time floating through space in virtual reality. Last time she checked, she still holds a Guinness World Record alongside iMore Editor in Chief Gerald Lynch for playing the largest game of Tetris ever made, too.