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Mag-nificent

Have you ever needed a magnifying glass and couldn’t find one? You probably had one with you and didn’t know it. There’s one in your iPhone. And it just got easier to find.

The Magnifier tool is in the Accessibility section of the iPhone. The “old” (but still good) way to get there is to tap Settings > General > Accessibility > Magnifier, and slide it “On.” Then, to use the feature at any time from any screen, triple-click the Home button and your iPhone camera becomes a magnifying glass. (Try it, you’ll like it).

With the iPhone’s new iOS11 software, there is an even easier way to open the Magnifier: you can add it to the phone’s Control Center for “one-swipe, one-tap” access.

(The Control Center is the dashboard that you can swipe up from the bottom section of you phone. It’s like a window shade that comes up from the bottom. This panel already has some useful shortcuts: the Camera, the Calculator, and the Flashlight.) Now you can remove shortcuts you don’t want and add ones you do, including the Magnifier.

To customize the Control Center, go to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls. The top part of the list shows the controls that already appear in your Control Center. To remove any of them, tap the red circle to the left of a specific shortcut. To add a control — like the Magnifier — scroll down the list and tap the green circle to the left of the shortcut.

Then, push the home button to return to your Home screen and raise the Control Center shade. You will see the controls you specified. If you added the Magnifier, tap it to use it.

Do you, um, SEE what I mean?

(Android owners: I do not know if there is a built-in magnifying feature in your phone but there are a number of good third-party magnifier apps available from the Google Play Store. Try one!)