Manage iPhone Home Screen Apps in Bulk with iOS 14’s App Library

posted in: May 2021 | 0
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Last year, when we started covering iOS 14’s App Library, I shared some new-to-me ways of cleaning up my iPhone’s Home screens in “Five Tips for Easier Rearranging of iOS Apps” (22 September 2020). Since then, I’ve discovered two additional techniques that enable you to add or remove apps from your Home screens in bulk, which is a whole lot easier than doing it one-by-one. They build on the technique of assembling a stack of apps and then rely on hidden features of the App Library.

Add Multiple Apps to the Home Screen

Let’s say that you’re taking a trip—hard to imagine these days, I know, but bear with me—and want to create a Home screen that holds a variety of travel-related apps. Follow these steps to add a bunch, all at once:

  1. Swipe left until the App Library appears.
  2. Tap the four tiny icons in a folder to display the apps in that category.
  3. Touch and hold the blank area at the top of the screen to enter jiggle mode.
  4. Start dragging an app with your right thumb. iOS 14 will immediately send you to the last Home screen, creating a new one if necessary.
  5. Continuing to hold the app with your right thumb, use a finger on your left hand to swipe left on the Home screen to return to the App Library.
  6. Still using your left hand, navigate into the desired folder again and tap the apps you want to add to the stack you’re holding with your right thumb.
  7. Once you’ve collected all the desired apps, use your left hand to swipe right to get back to the Home screen.
  8. Lift your right thumb to drop the stack of apps. Voila!
  9. Tap Done to exit jiggle mode.

You can see what I’m doing in this short video.

 

 

Remove Multiple Apps from the Home Screen

A similar technique works equally well for removing a collection of apps from the Home screen. Imagine that we’ve returned from our trip, and there’s no need to waste screen real estate on travel apps anymore. Follow these steps to remove them:

  1. Touch and hold a blank area of the Home screen to enter jiggle mode.
  2. Start dragging an app with your right thumb. It’s easiest to move to the bottom-right corner.
  3. Using a finger on your left hand, tap the apps you want to remove from the Home screen to add them to your stack. You can swipe between Home screens if you wish.
  4. Still using your left hand, swipe left to get to the App Library.
  5. Lift your right thumb to drop the stack of apps and remove them from the Home screen. You can think of iOS 14 as automatically placing them back in their pre-specified App Library folders.
  6. Tap Done to exit jiggle mode.

Again, a short video shows the steps live.

 

 

These tips won’t kill the coronavirus or promote world peace, but they make managing iPhone Home screens faster and easier.