Apple highlights that an iPhone — and presumably other iOS devices — will use light and proximity sensors to determine whether it's laying face-down, and stop the screen from turning on even when notifications come in.

It does not seem to work on my iPhone 6. Do I have to enable low power mode for this to work?

  • That's very weird. Even when I turn low power mode and auto-brightness on, the face down detection won't work on my iPhone 5S. Sep 18, 2015 at 13:27
  • It doesn't seem to work. I'm on an iPhone 4S/iOS9 and even with Low-Power mode on it doesn't work. Hope Apple makes some official comments on it and/or fix it on the next update.
    – user147755
    Sep 20, 2015 at 22:57
  • Works on my 6 without low power mode. Sep 24, 2015 at 15:30

2 Answers 2


The motion coprocessor setting are what govern this battery saving option.

Settings > Privacy > Motion & Fitness > Fitness Tracking

On setting allow the motion coprocessor and proximity sensors to shut off the screen if they detect a face down orientation.

You can test the sensors by checking motion in the health app for step count (for instance) and by making a call and testing the proximity sensor turning off the screen when it is covered.

See this nice article for more information: http://www.iphonehacks.com/2015/09/why-facedown-detection-feature-in-ios-9-doesnt-support-iphone-5-iphone-4s-ipads-and-ipod-touches.html

  • 1
    this worked after the new update 9.0.1. i have no idea why, cause the update had nothing in the description about it. thanks Sep 28, 2015 at 5:24

Yes. You should enable low power mode for it to work

  • it didn't work, it still lights up Sep 21, 2015 at 5:23
  • -1 Low power mode has nothing to do with this feature. Can you provide a link or explanation why you feel low power will affect this?
    – bmike
    Sep 24, 2015 at 17:08

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