How To Use iOS 17 Facetime Hand Gestures

iOS 17 Facetime Hand Gestures takes video calling to the next level with fun new hand gestures that let you react and express yourself in real-time. Simple physical motions like a thumbs up or peace sign can now trigger animated effects and reactions during your FaceTime calls.

Learn how to use these interactive FaceTime gestures to make your video chats more lively and engaging.

Recent Released:What Are The iOS 17 Facetime Reactions List

Animoji-Style Reactions Enabled By Machine Learning

Powering the new FaceTime gestures in iOS 17 is advanced machine learning capable of recognizing discrete hand motions and triggering corresponding reactions. It’s similar technology to that used for Animoji that mirrors your facial expressions onto 3D characters.

But instead of faces, it’s now scanning and interpreting the positions and motions of your hands via the TrueDepth camera on the front of supported iPhone and iPad models.

Supported Devices for Gestures

To take advantage of the machine learning-enabled FaceTime gestures you’ll need:

  • iPhone 13 or later models (excluding iPhone SE)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation) or later
  • Supported iPad Air and iPad mini models with Apple silicon
  • Macs powered by Apple silicon running macOS 13 Sonoma or later

If you’re using an older iOS device that lacks Apple’s latest TrueDepth hardware, you unfortunately won’t have access to the real-time hand gesture features. You can still participate in FaceTime calls, but won’t be able to trigger the reactions directly.

iOS FaceTime Gestures You Can Use

Apple introduced eight different hand motions that can trigger fun reactions during FaceTime calls in iOS 17. Some are simple one-handed motions while others require two hands for more elaborate animated effects.

Thumbs UpRaise your thumbTrigger celebratory sparkles and stars
Thumbs DownShow your thumb pointed downMakes an animated rainy cloud appear
HeartBring both hands together with fingers in a heart shapeGenerates a rising heart shape with trailing sparkles
FireworksGive two thumbs pointed upLaunches an animated fireworks display
RainGive two thumbs pointing downMakes virtual rain appear to pour down
BalloonsShow a heart shape with both handsFloating balloons rise up from the bottom
ConfettiShow double peace signs with both handsTosses confetti across the screen
Laser BurstFlash a V-sign with two fingers on one handZaps lasers in an explosive bursts

As you can see, some gestures like the single thumb triggers are simple. But bringing two hands together lets you conjure up more lively animated reactions like fireworks or confetti.

Get creative and try combining these gestures for even more spectacular effects!

How To Get Started With FaceTime Hand Gestures

Using the new hand gestures during FaceTime calls is easy.

Just follow these steps:

1. Initiate a FaceTime Call

Open FaceTime and start a new call or join an existing one. Make sure everyone in the call is using an iOS device or Mac that supports the new gestures via the TrueDepth camera and vision detection capabilities.

2. Open Control Center

Next, swipe down from the top right corner of your iPhone or iPad screen to reveal Control Center during your call.

3. Tap Video Effects

In Control Center you’ll see two new buttons for ‘Video Effects’ and ‘Reactions’ positioned above the normal controls tiles. Tap on Video Effects to enable gesture detection.

Tip: Video Effects need only be enabled once to allow gestures for all FaceTime calls until disabled again.

4. Start Gesturing!

Now you’re all set! Try out some of the hand motions from the table above to trigger fun reactions during your call. Get creative with combining gestures too.

Keep reading to learn how to toggle the gestures on or off whenever needed.

Toggling FaceTime Gestures On or Off

By default, the new FaceTime hand gesture reactions will be enabled automatically in iOS 17 whenever you’re on a FaceTime call.

But if desired, you can easily toggle the gestures detection on or off via Control Center:

Disable Gestures

  1. Open Control Center during a FaceTime call
  2. Tap the ‘Reactions’ button so it’s greyed out.

This will disable gesture reactions until enabled again.

Re-Enable Gestures

  1. Open Control Center
  2. Tap the ‘Reactions’ tile so it’s highlighted blue again.

Now motion gestures will again trigger reactions during calls!

More Interactive Features to Come

The new hand gestures just scratch the surface of Apple’s vision for more interactive real-time engagement in FaceTime.

We’ll likely see even more inventive uses of TrueDepth and machine learning baked into iOS updates. Imagine custom Memoji reactions based on your facial expressions or even full body tracking to animate your own 3D avatar during calls!

For now, spruce up your next FaceTime gathering by showing off some fun reactions with hand gestures powered by the new iOS 17 updates.

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