Keeping track of all the apps on your iPhone or iPad can be a challenge, but the App Library has made it easier. This feature allows your device to intelligently organizes apps into folders based on categories such as suggested apps, recently added apps, social, entertainment, shopping, music, games, and more.
You can open the App Library with a simple swipe, then open a specific app from its folder, perform a search for the right app, or browse all your apps in alphabetical order. Apps can be moved from the App Library to the home screen, or deleted entirely, but apps in the library cannot be moved from one folder to another. If you feel an app has been categorized in the wrong folder, there’s nothing you can do.
Overall, the App Library is a helpful tool for managing your apps and finding the ones you need. It's especially useful if you haven’t already manually organized your apps into different folders. Here’s how the feature works.
To use the App Library, you will need to update your iPhone to iOS 14 or higher and iPad to iPadOS 15 or higher, if you haven’t already done so. On either device, go to Settings > General > Software Update. Your device will indicate that your software is up to date or it will prompt you to download and install the latest update.
After you’ve updated your device, open to the home screen and swipe to the left until you bump into the App Library screen. Here, you’ll see various folders with your apps neatly organized and tucked into each one based on the most fitting category.
Some of the apps have large icons, while others sport smaller icons in groups of four. You can open an app that has a large icon by just tapping it. For apps with small icons, tap anywhere in the quadrant of four small icons to bring up a screen displaying all of the apps in that category. From there, just tap the app icon.
If you’re having trouble finding a specific app, you can browse or search for it. Swipe down on the App Library screen to view an alphabetical list of all the apps installed on the device. To find a specific app faster, tap a letter on the right-hand side to see all apps starting with that letter.
Alternatively, start typing the name of the app you want in the App Library search field at the top to see the corresponding apps. Tap the app icon to launch the app.
You can add an app from the App Library to your home screen if it’s not already there. Long-press on the icon to open the command menu, then tap Add to Home Screen. The app’s icon appears on the next free spot on your home screen but also remains in the App Library.
Another method of moving apps is to hold down on an app until all the icons start jiggling. The home screen will then appear, allowing you to place the icon into the correct position. You can also hold down on an icon from the home screen and select the Edit Home Screen command from the menu to make all the apps jiggle.
To remove an app from the home screen, press down on the icon and tap Remove App from the pop-up menu. You are then asked if you want to delete the app or move it to the App Library. Tap Remove App, then choose Remove from Home Screen.
You can delete any app in the library by pressing down on its icon. Tap the Delete App command to delete it and then confirm the deletion. Note that this doesn’t just remove the app from the App Library; it uninstalls the app entirely, so be careful with this option.
If you want to control where new apps are installed, head to Settings > Home Screen (or Home Screen & Dock on an iPad). Under the Newly Downloaded Apps section, choose Add to Home Screen to add new apps to both the Home Screen and the App Library. Tap App Library Only to add new apps to the App Library but not your Home Screen.
Under the Notification Badges section, you can enable Show in App Library to change the notifications you see while in the App Library.