Enable & Disable Night Shift Quickly from Control Center on iPhone & iPad

Apr 7, 2016 - 17 Comments

Night Shift button in iOS Control Center

Night Shift in iOS causes the device display to readjust to a warmer color spectrum, thereby reducing the displays output of blue light. This makes the screen of an iPhone or iPad not only more pleasant to look at in the evening and dark hours, but it also is easier on the eyes and potentially offers some health benefits as well.

Using Night Shift is extremely easy and you can quickly toggle the feature on and off anytime in iOS and iPadOS, or you can set it on an automatic timer as well to turn itself on with sunset and sunrise.

Night Shift requires the latest version of iOS to be installed on the iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, versions earlier than 9.3 do not have the option available.

How to Enable or Disable Night Shift on iPhone & iPad from Control Center

The fastest way to turn on Night Shift, or to turn it off, is to access Control Center on any iOS device:

  1. Access Control Center on iPhone or iPad, on iPhone X and iPad that means swiping down from the top right corner, on older iPhone models it means swipe up from the very bottom of the device screen to access the Control Center
    • Next, what you do depends on what version of iOS you have:
    • For iOS 12 and iOS 13: Tap and hold on the Brightness slider to access additional options, then tap on the little sun/moon icon that says Night Shift to toggle the feature off or ON
    • For iOS 9.3, iOS 10, iOS 11: Tap on the little sun / moon icon in the middle of Control Center to enable (or disable) Night Shift mode
    • Enable or Disable Night Shift on iPhone from Control Center

  2. Exit out of Control Center as usual for changes to take effect

The effect is immediate and you’ll notice the color instantly shift to become warmer if Night Shift is turned on.

If Night Shift was already enabled, turning it off will turn the display back to its default color profile.

What Does Night Shift Look Like?

The animated gif image below demonstrates what an iPhone display toggling between Night Shift and regular mode looks like, with the Night Shift version being significantly warmer with an orange / sepia brown tone to the whites and screen colors.

Night Shit switching between on and off on iPhone:
Night Shift On and Night Shift Off on iPhone animated gif

Night Shift on:
Night Shift enabled on iPhone

Night Shift off:
Night Shift disabled in iOS

You can adjust the warmth of Night Shift by going to Settings > Display & Brightness > Night Shift, generally speaking the stronger the warmth set the better the features impacts on blue light reduction are thought to be, though the display will obviously shift its color profile to be quite a bit different from the default option when it’s enabled.

What is the Point of Night Shift?

There’s a significant amount of science behind the harmful effects of blue light exposure on sleep and health. Aside from the potential health benefits, you’ll likely find it’s just more enjoyable to read and interact with a warmer display setting once the evening rolls around and the ambient lighting is lower.

Night Shift in iOS

Whether you use Night Shift on the iPhone or iPad manually yourself as night time rolls around, or if you set it up on automatic mode to adjust itself as the day changes, be sure to use and try the feature, it’s really quite nice. Mac users can use Night Shift on macOS with modern versions of system software, while older Macs can achieve a similar effect in Mac OS X by getting Flux for Mac, which adjusts the display color in a similar way based on time of day and user settings.


Related articles:

Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, iPhone, Tips & Tricks


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  1. EconoUser says:

    Night shift does NOT work on all 9.3 compatible devices. Folks with iPhones 5s 5c 4 and earlier will not be able to take advantage of this feature. Nor will certain iPad users. If you are willing to jailbreak you can install flux which has this functionality.

    It’s true those of us who don’t buy the latest new toys year by year miss out on some bells and whistles. OTOH we keep a few (hundred) extra bucks in our pockets.

  2. no way says:

    It’s not showing on my iPhone 5 either and it it 100% up to date for iOS (9.3.1). Also note from the Flux developer:

    Note for people using f.lux on El Capitan (10.11): The new version of “Automatically adjust brightness” in El Capitan seems to cause flickering with f.lux. For the moment, you’ll have to turn this feature off to use f.lux.
    To make the fix, use System Preferences > Displays and uncheck. Occasionally, a reboot may also be necessary.

    • Peter says:

      I use Flux in El Capitan every day without any issue.

      Night Shift coming to native Mac OS X is the rumor, I hear.

      • no way says:

        The issue is described by the developer, clearly it exists if they acknowledge it, and rumors are just that.

        • Bagel says:

          I use Flux every night on my Mac with OS X 10.11.4, what is your issue? Works fine, never have a problem with Flux on Mac at all.

          I use Night Shift on my iPhone every day now too, but I wish it worked with battery saving mode. And why does it have a weird name? Big fan of Night Shift color change. Not a fan of calling it named as Night Shift, talking to people about it makes them think all sorts of things!!

          • no way says:

            Issue is as described in the quote from the developer in my last post, in case you missed it here it is again:

            “Note for people using f.lux on El Capitan (10.11): The new version of “Automatically adjust brightness” in El Capitan seems to cause flickering with f.lux. For the moment, you’ll have to turn this feature off to use f.lux.
            To make the fix, use System Preferences > Displays and uncheck. Occasionally, a reboot may also be necessary.”

  3. Josh says:

    I also have a 5c and have no option for night shift.

  4. Shirley says:

    No it does not work on all devices with 9.3.1. I don’t have Low Power Mode Enabled. For those of us who don’t buy a new iPhone or iPad each year it would be nice if you checked which phones and pads can use things before you make a blanket statement.

    • Bernard Clinton Trump says:

      Shirley, my rotary phone from 1975 doesn’t have Night Shift, why is Apple not bringing this feature to my rotary dialer?!? I can’t get it.

      • Calico says:

        Night Shift works on virtually every iPhone and iPad that supports iOS 9.3.1, there are one or two exceptions.

        The full list of Night Shift supported devices includes:

        iPhone 5
        iPhone 5c
        iPod touch 5G
        iPad mini
        iPad 2
        iPad 3
        iPad 4
        iPod touch 6G
        iPhone 5s
        iPhone 6
        iPhone 6s
        iPhone 6 Plus
        iPhone 6s Plus
        iPad Air
        iPad Air 2
        iPad mini 2
        iPad mini 3
        iPad mini 4
        iPad Pro
        iPhone SE
        iPad Pro PLUS
        iPad Pro Mini

        If you have an iPhone 3GS or iPhone 1 it will not have that feature nor iOS 9.3.1

        • no way says:

          No one I know with an iPhone 5 (I talked to I think 6 total) has this feature.

          This intel is clearly wrong.

  5. jshell says:

    It seems to me, that Night Shift button should be at the top, not the bottom.

    The bottom row houses apps, while the top row houses modes: turn on/off bluetooth or do not disturb.

  6. Elizabeth says:

    Doesn’t work on my iPhone 5C or original iPad Mini, despite having iOS 9.3.1 installed on both.

    • itn says:

      This works on all devices, it shifts the colors. This is how you enable Night Shift, if it is not working for you it’s because you have Low Power Mode enabled.

  7. RM says:

    If you tend to use your iPhone/iPad before going to sleep I recommend you try night shift – amazingly, I haven’t slept this well in years though the color space takes a bit getting use to.

    • Roll says:

      I completely agree, Night Shift on iOS and Flux on Mac are mandatory.

      Hearing rumors that Flux type native color profiles will come to OS X in 10.12… we’ll see what happens. Flux and Hey Siri are the tentpole features for now.

    • Luke says:

      I agree. I used f.lux until night shift, and when it was announced, I was very happy:)

      I still use f.lux on all my Macs and PC’s, though.

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