Use motions and gestures to control your Galaxy phone

A hand using gestures on the Galaxy Note 20

Motions and gestures are here to make life simpler. With a few hand movements, you can tell your phone to turn on, mute your alerts, or take a screenshot. You can even make your phone vibrate when you pick it up after receiving a message, so you'll be reminded to reply right away. Play around with the different features until you find the ones you're comfortable with, and turn them off or on to have more control over your phone.

Note: Available motions and gestures may vary by model.

Turn motions and gestures on or off

You can interact with your phone by performing simple actions with your hands, like swiping and tapping.

To find Motions and gestures, navigate to and open Settings, and then swipe to and tap Advanced features. Tap Motions and gestures; these options will be available:

  • Lift to wake: Picking up your phone will turn on the screen, so you can easily see new notifications and messages.

  • Double tap to turn on screen: The screen will turn on when you double tap it. This will help you avoid accidentally turning on the screen.

Motions and gestures screen with a list of settings on a Galaxy phone
  • Double tap to turn off screen: The screen will turn off when you double tap an empty space on the Lock or Home screen.

  • Keep screen on while viewing: The screen will stay on the entire time you are looking at it, without requiring you to touch it. The front camera will identify your face in order to keep the screen illuminated.

  • Alert when phone picked up: If you missed a call or message, your phone will vibrate once you pick it up.

  • Mute with gestures: Placing your hand over the screen will mute alarms and calls. You can also turn your phone face down to silence it.

  • Palm swipe to capture: Swipe the edge of your hand across the screen to take a quick screenshot. 

    Note: This gesture is not available when the keyboard is showing.

Direct Call and Finger sensor gestures

Note: Direct Call is only available on the S9 and Note9.

There are additional gestures you can use to make navigating your phone even easier, like Direct Call and Finger sensor gestures. You can quickly call someone in your contacts by raising your phone to your ear, and access your notifications with a swipe on the fingerprint sensor.

Direct Call allows you to call someone by placing your phone to your ear. To use this feature, navigate to your Contacts and tap the number you’d like to call. Then, raise the phone to your ear and the number will be dialed. You can also use Direct Call when viewing a text conversation or call log information, such as your recent calls list.

If you don’t like using Direct Call, you can turn off the feature by navigating to Settings and then tapping Advanced features. Tap Direct Call, and then tap the switch to turn it off.

Direct call with switch turned on

Finger sensor gestures allow you to open your notifications and launch Samsung Pay by swiping down on the fingerprint sensor. Navigate to Settings, tap Advanced features, and then tap Finger sensor gestures to turn it on. You can turn on the Samsung Pay feature as well to make purchases more convenient.

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