Apple has also introduced a way to customise your app icons in iOS 14 – although it isn’t as straightforward as some might like.
To customise your app icons, you’ll have to create a shortcut within the Shortcuts app that opens the real app and then customise the shortcut’s Home screen icon. It’s a workaround admittedly, and it means the Shortcuts app will momentarily open before opening the app of your choice, but the option is there if you want it.
We’ve mentioned it a few times, so it’s time to address it: the App Library. Accessible via sideswipe, it’s what makes removing apps from the Home screen possible, presenting all your installed apps either in list form or via smart folders.
The latter splits your apps into various categories – including a dedicated folder for Apple Arcade games, and another for recently installed apps – for easy access. You can tap on the largest app icons to open the app directly, or tap the smaller icons to open the folder, and the largest app icons will automatically change depending on app usage.
It’s certainly a nice spin on Android’s App Drawer, but only time will tell whether those folders are truly smart enough to automatically organise your favourite apps and games.
For the first time in iOS history, you’ve now got the option of removing an app from your Home screen without deleting it entirely. It’ll still be accessible via widgets, the App Library and the Search bar, but it won’t be cluttering your Home screen. Besides, with widgets now available, you’ll need all the space you can get! To remove an app without deleting it, simply press and hold until the app icons jiggle, tap the x and tap Remove from Home Screen.
Find out hidden features on your iOS 14! Tips and Tricks that will maximize the usage of your iPhone device.
There are hundreds of new features in iOS 14, many of which are immediately obvious like the new Home Screen widgets, the App Library, pinned conversations and mentions in Messages, a compact UI for Siri and Phone calls, and more, but there are also tons of features that are less immediately obvious.
In this video, we’ve rounded up some of the most useful hidden features you’ll find in the iOS 14 update.
Widgets aren’t new – they were first introduced to the Today View in iOS 10 – but for the first time, you can place widgets on the Home screen alongside your apps. It’s a much-loved feature of Android, and it’s great to see Apple finally fully embrace widgets after all these years.
There are a bunch of new widgets for iOS 14, including those for fitness rings (ideal for Apple Watch owners), battery life, Maps, Photos and more. There’s also what Apple calls a Smart Stack widget that’ll provide you with Siri app suggestions directly on your Home screen. It’s all based on your habits, and we’ve found it to be pretty helpful – especially now that not all apps live on the Home screen.
To add widgets to your Home screen in iOS 14, simply tap and hold anywhere on your Home screen until your app icons begin to jiggle. Then tap the + icon in the top-left, select the widget you’d like to place and drop it on your Home screen.
The only widgets available right now are those for built-in apps, but with the release of iOS 14 today, it’s likely we’ll see third-party options appearing soon. Could we see an Android-esque Spotify widget to control music playback? One can only hope.
As well as removing individual apps from your Home screen, you can get rid of entire pages at once. But, unlike with removing individual apps, you can re-add the pages with a tap – no need to drag-and-drop apps from the App Library one by one. To hide pages, simply press and hold on the Home screen until icons begin to jiggle, then tap the app page icon (dots) at the bottom of the screen. From there, it’s as simple as unchecking the pages you want to hide and tapping Done to apply the change.