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iOS 15: How to make sense of deleting and moving apps on your iPhone

Deleting apps from your iPhone takes a few extra steps. We'll explain.


Deleting apps is a necessary task, but it's also a little more confusing now. 

James Martin/CNET

You may find deleting apps from your iPhone a bit trickier than before. AAre they gone for good when you delete them from your Home screen? Ever since app support for the iPhone showed up in 2008, the process to delete an app had been the same. Long-press the app icon until you enable jiggle mode (that's the official name, per Apple), then tap "X." Confirm you wanted to remove the app, and it disappears -- no additional steps required. 

But now, you'll have to make a few extra taps for them to disappear. With iOS 15, you'll have to decide if you want to edit your home screen or delete the app for good. You can also remove built-in apps that you rarely use, too. And you can use the App Library to store apps that you don't want to see on your Home screen, but aren't ready to delete from your phone.

I'll walk you through how to remove apps for good, keep them in your library and make changes to your Home screen. For more Apple news, here's everything to know about Apple's October event and the latest on the iPhone 13 models. This story was recently updated.

How to move or delete apps on your iPhone home screen

There are a couple of ways you can delete an app on your iPhone. To start, you can long-press an app icon until you see a pop-up menu. The actions you can then take will depend on the app. In the Mail app, for example, in addition to app-specific actions (like a composing a new email) you'll see two system options: Remove App and Edit Home Screen. You can share the app, too. 

Alternatively, you can keep long-pressing the app icon for a few more seconds until all of the app icons start dancing. 

Whether you select Remove App from the pop-up menu, or you tap on the new "-" sign on the app icon while in jiggle mode, you'll be presented with a brand-new prompt: Asking if you want to delete the app or move it from the Home screen. 

Deleting the app will remove the app and all of its data from your phone, freeing up precious storage space. Moving it to your App Library will only remove the app icon from your Home screen. The app will remain installed, and you can access it at any time by swiping from right to left on your home screen until you get to your App Library. 

If you're using jiggle mode to clear out unused apps, keep repeating the same steps until you're given the option to delete the app from the Apple Store, then tap Delete or tap on a blank area of your screen. 


You can delete apps from the App Library, as well. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Delete apps in your App Library

There are multiple ways to do this. 

Your first option is to swipe the last page of your Home screen until you see your App Library. Next, use the search bar at the top of your App Library to search for the app by scrolling through the list of icons. Long-press on the app icon until you see a pop-up menu, and then select Delete App. The key to seeing the menu is the long touch. Be careful not to accidentally drag the app to your home screen instead. 

The other option is to find the app in its categorical folder, long-press on it, then select Delete App from the popup. You can then continue deleting apps with a tap on the "X" after triggering jiggle mode. Tap Done or leave the folder when you're finished. 

Now that you've learned the new method for deleting apps on your iPhone, make sure to check out all of our favorite features in iOS 15. We've also found a handful of hidden features you're sure to love as much as we do. If you have a new Apple Watch, change these settings right away.