How to Make iPhone Flash a Light When You Have Voicemail

enable iphone led flash
image credit Atsushi Yamada/Taxi Japan/Getty Images

Last Updated: May 18, 2015

One of the great things about smartphones is that they can let us know when they have important information on them that we need to pay attention to. When your apps have an alert or notification for you, depending on your push notification settings they either display a message on the screen, make noise, or both. iPhone users have had these options for many years, but a lot of people prefer a third kind of alert: a flashing light.


With this kind of alert, the LED (or light-emitting diode) that's used as a flash for your smartphone's camera can blink when you have an alert it wants to notify you about. These LED flash alerts allow you to know when you need to pay attention to your phone without looking at the screen or having the volume turned on (a perfect option for a quiet office environment, church, or another place where you want to be in the loop without being a distraction).

Android and BlackBerry users have had this kind of LED alert for years and often cite it as a reason that they prefer their devices to the iPhone. But did you know that the iPhone also has LED flash alerts as an option? You have to know where the setting is hidden, but once you do these alerts are simple to enable. Here's what you need to do.


In order to enable these alerts, you need:

  • An iPhone 4 or newer
  • iOS 5 or higher

How to Enable iPhone LED Flash Alerts

  1. Tap the Settings app on your home screen
  1. Tap General
  2. Tap Accessibility
  3. Scroll down to the Hearing section (the setting is located there because this feature was originally designed for people with hearing impairments who can't hear their phones ringing when calls come in or alerts are sent)
  4. Find the LED Flash for Alerts menu. Move the slider to On/green.

    With that done, your phone's flash will now blink when you have alerts or incoming calls.

    How It Works

    Once you have the feature turned on, there's not a lot to do. When you get a phone call, voicemail, or push notification alert, the LED will flash to get your attention. The one crucial thing you need to do in order to use this feature, though, is keep your iPhone screen side down. Because the only LED flash on the iPhone is on its back, you won't be able to see the light if your phone is resting on its back.

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