What Is the iPhone App Library and How Do I Use It?

The app library is a new page on your iPhone Home screen that contains every app on your device. It's a great way to automatically organize your apps, and it even lets you remove apps from your Home screen that you don't use often.

Here's everything you need to know about using the App Library on your iPhone.

How Do I Use the App Library?

Continue swiping right to left through your last Home screen to open the App Library. Your iPhone automatically groups apps into different folders based on their category. These categories include Social, Entertainment, Gadgets, Productivity, etc.

At the top of the App Library, you'll also see a folder of Suggestions. These are apps that your iPhone thinks you might want to use, based on your typical activities around the current time.

Next to the Suggestions folder, there's also a Recently Added folder, which shows the apps you most recently installed on your iPhone.

Tap in the search bar at the top of the App Library to search for an app by name or view all the apps on your iPhone in an alphabetical list.

Finally, tap an app icon in the App Library to launch it, or tap the small app icons to open a folder.

How Do I Find Apps in the App Library?

To find an app in the App Library, swipe left through your last Home screen to open the App Library, and then scroll down to see all the different folders. Find a folder that you think should belong to: Social, Entertainment, Health & Fitness, and more.

Each folder displays a selection of applications within it. You'll see three large app icons with four smaller icons in the last space. That means you can see a total of seven apps inside each folder, but maybe even more.

Tap the small app icons in a folder to expand it, displaying the entire contents of the folder.

When you tap one of the larger app icons, your iPhone opens it automatically instead of opening the folder. This helps launch apps you use faster.

If you still can't find the app you're looking for, tap the search bar at the top of the App Library to search for it.

You can also search for apps using Spotlight by dragging them down from the Home screen, which doesn't use the App Library at all. This is really the fastest way to open apps on your iPhone.

How Do I Change the App Library Folders?

Your iPhone automatically chooses a location to place apps in the App Library; Unfortunately, there is no way to change them. This can be annoying if you disagree with the folder that your iPhone uses for certain apps, which is quite common!

For example, my iPhone puts IMDb in the Entertainment folder, but I feel it's in the Info & Read folder.

You can't change or rename folders in the App Library. All you can do is find out where your iPhone chooses to save the app.

Understandably, a lot of users feel this is more complicated than it should be. If you feel the same way, we recommend creating your own folder set on the Backup Home screen, which you can configure the way you want.

How Do I Send Apps to the App Library?

The main reason Apple introduced the App Library is so you don't need to have every app on one of your Home Screens anymore. You can remove apps from your Home Screen and still find them in the App Library whenever you need them.

To remove an app from the Home Screen, tap and hold on the app until a popup menu appears. Choose to Remove App, then choose to Remove from Home Screen.

This doesn't delete the app from your iPhone—it's still available in the App Library—but it does remove it from the Home Screen to free up visual space.

In fact, you can even remove entire Home Screens that you might not need now that you have the App Library. To do this, tap and hold on a blank space of the Home Screen to enter Jiggle mode. Then tap the three dots at the bottom of the screen to view all your Home Screens and disable any that you don't want.

How to Remove Apps From the App Library

Next, we'll explain both how to move apps from the App Library back to a Home Screen, and how to delete apps from the App Library and the rest of your iPhone completely.

After rearranging your Home Screens, you might decide you want to move an app out of the App Library and back to your Home Screen. To do this, tap and hold on the relevant app in the App Library until a popup menu appears, then choose to Add to Home Screen.

For some reason, not every app offers this option in the popup menu. If that happens, tap and hold on it, then drag it to the left of the screen to go to your Home Screen. From there, you can drop it wherever you want.

To completely delete an app from the App Library and your iPhone, tap and hold it in the App Library and choose to Delete App from the popup menu.

Offload Apps to Save Storage

Of course, if you're worried about saving space on your iPhone, you can always choose to offload apps instead of deleting them. To offload apps, go to Settings > App Store > Offload Unused Apps. When you offload an app, your iPhone automatically removes unused apps while keeping your documents and data for that app.

That way, the next time you need the app, your iPhone automatically downloads it again from the App Store.

Now that you can hide unused apps in the App Library, there's even more reason to offload apps you don't use to save iPhone storage.