My iPhone has received a good deal of use, and as a result, some of the buttons have lost a bit of their luster. My home button, in particular, is a bit flaky.
If you’re like me and don’t want to pursue an exchange or another phone, I have a solution.
If your iPhone is jailbroken, install Activator from Cydia. Find it Settings, and make gestures or other buttons emulate your broken buttons.
For me, I shook the device to return to the home screen and I swiped up from below to activate the application switcher.