How to Find an App on Your iPhone/iPad Quickly

Stop looking for your apps and start launching them!

Woman using a digital tablet, using the touch screen, stock-taking in a small gift shop.
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It might seem easy enough to open an app on your iPhone or iPad. You just tap on it, right? One big problem: you need to know where it is first. But this is a problem you don't need to solve. There are a few shortcuts you can use to launch apps quickly without searching through page after page of app icons.

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Open the App Quickly With Spotlight Search

The quick launch screen on the iPad

The Spotlight Search feature is very powerful, but many people never use it. You can open Spotlight Search two ways: (1) You can swipe down on the Home Screen being careful not to swipe from the very top of the screen (which will open the Notification Center), or you can keep swiping from left to right on the Home Screen until you 'scroll' past the first page of icons and into the Expanded Spotlight Search.

Spotlight Search automatically shows app suggestions based on your most used and most recently used apps, so you might find your app right away. If not, simply start typing the first few letters of the app's name into the search box and it will show up.

Spotlight Search performs a search of your entire device, so you can also search for contacts, music, movies, and books. It will even perform a search of the web, and for apps that support it, Spotlight Search can look inside of apps for the information. So a search for a movie might provide a shortcut to it in your Netflix app.

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Launch the App as Fast as Sound Using Siri

Siri's launch screen

Siri is full of great shortcuts that many people don't use because they either don't know about them or feel a little silly talking to their iPhone or iPad. But rather than spending a few minutes hunting down an app, you can simply tell Siri to "Launch Netflix" or "Open Safari".

You can activate Siri by holding down the Home Button. If this doesn't work, you'll need to turn on Siri in your Settings first. And if you have "Hey Siri" turned on in the Siri settings and your iPhone or iPad is plugged into a power source, you don't even need to hold down Siri to activate it.  Simply say, "Hey Siri Open Netflix."

Of course, there are many other great features that go along with Siri, such as leaving yourself reminders, scheduling meetings or checking the weather outside.

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Launch Apps From the Dock

The iOS dock

Did you know you can exchange the apps on your iPhone or iPad's dock? The dock is the area at the bottom of the Home Screen that displays the same apps no matter which screen of apps you are on at the time. This dock will hold four apps on the iPhone and over a dozen on the iPad. You can move apps on and off the dock the same way you would move them around the screen

This gives you a great area to put your most used apps.

Better: You can create a folder and move it to the dock, giving you quick access to a larger number of apps.

On the iPad, your most recently opened apps will show up on the far right side of the dock. This gives you a quick and easy way to switch back and forth between apps. You can even pull up the dock while inside an app, which makes it easy to multitask on your iPad.