A new features in iOS 7.1 allows you to modify the user interface of your entire phone, bringing back iOS 6-like buttons in Apple’s new operating system. When Apple released iOS 7, there were mixed responses to the new clean and positively stark interface. The abundance of white space coupled with a new text-based UI made it difficult to distinguish between navigation elements and on-screen content. With the release of iOS 7.1, Apple now offers an option to set a background to the text elements, which creates buttons in most of your apps, including third party applications.

Apple has once again relied on the ‘Accessibility’ settings to provide users with a way to customize the UI of iOS 7. You’ll want to navigate to Settings > General > Accessibility. The second group of settings has an option for ‘Button Shapes’. Toggle it to on or green.

button shapes iOS 7.1

When you do this, you’ll immediately see it take affect on the navigational element at the top right. You should notice a gray background behind text links that are user interface buttons. Some areas of iOS 7 will use a black background with a text link.

Button shapes iOS 7.1

Despite a lengthy beta period for iOS 7.1, enabling button shapes can result in some very poorly rendered design. Using stock iOS 7.1 on an iPhone 5s, here are a few samples of how this option can result in some truly awful looking UI elements. It’s almost as if Apple is telling users not to enable button shapes.

Poor UI in iOS 7.1

This might not be iOS 6 buttons, but adding button shapes in iOS 7.1 can help make it easier to navigate your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.