How to Make Folders and Group Apps on the iPhone

close-up of hand moving iPhone apps
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Making folders on your iPhone is a terrific way to reduce clutter on your home screen. Grouping apps together can also make it easier to use your phone—if all of your music apps are in the same place, you won't have to go hunting through folders or searching your phone when you want to use them.  

How you create folders isn't immediately obvious. But once you learn the trick, it's very simple. Follow these steps to create folders on your iPhone: 

Make Folders and Group Apps on the iPhone

  1. To create a folder, you'll need at least two apps to put into the folder. Figure out which two you want to use
  2. Tap and hold one of the apps until all apps on the screen start shaking (This is the same process that you use to re-arrange apps)
  3. Drag one of the apps onto the other. When the first app seems to merge into the second one, take your finger off the screen. This creates the folder
  4. What you see next differs depending on what version of the iOS you're running. In iOS 7 and higher, the folder and its suggested name take up the entire screen. In iOS 4-6, you'll see the two apps and a name for the folder in a little strip across the screen 
  5. You can edit the name of the folder now (or later) by tapping on the name and using the onscreen keyboard. More on folder names in the next section
  6. If you want to add more apps to the folder, tap the wallpaper to minimize the folder. Then drag more apps into the new folder
  1. When you've added all the apps you want and edited the name, click the Home button on the front center of the iPhone and your changes will be saved (just like when re-arranging icons)
  2. To edit an existing folder, tap and hold on the folder until it begins to move. Tap it a second time and the folder will open and its contents will fill the screen. Edit the folder's name by tapping on the text. Add more apps by dragging them in. Click the Home button to save your changes.

    How Folder Names Are Suggested

    When you first create a folder, the iPhone assigns a suggested name to it. That name is chosen based on the category that the apps in the folder come from. If, for instance, the apps come from the Games category of the App Store, the suggested name of the folder is Games. You can use the suggested name or add your own using the instructions in step 5 above.

    Adding Folders to the iPhone Dock

    The four apps across the bottom of the iPhone live in what's called the dock. You can add folders to the dock if you want. To do that, just move one of the apps currently in the dock out by dragging it to the main area of the home screen. Then drag a folder into the empty space left behind and press the Home button to save the change.

    Making Folders on the iPhone 6S and 7

    Making folders on the iPhone 6S and 7 series is a little trickier. That's because the 3D Touch screen on those devices responds differently to different presses on the screen. If you have one of those phones, don't press too hard in step 2 above or it won't work. Just a light tap and hold is enough.

    Removing Apps From Folders

    If you want to remove an app from a folder on your iPhone or iPod touch, follow these steps:

    1. Tap and hold the folder that you want to remove the app from
    2. When the apps and folders start wiggling, remove your finger from the screen
    3. Tap the folder you want to remove the app from
    4. Drag the app out of the folder and onto the Homescreen
    5. Click the Home button to save the new arrangement.

    Deleting a Folder on the iPhone

    Deleting a folder is similar to removing an app. Simply drag all the apps out of the folder and onto the Homescreen. When you do this, the folder disappears. Press the Home button to save the change and you're done.