Instructions 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.  

The method to create folders isn't immediately obvious as there's no button. 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
  6. If you want to add more apps to the folder, tap the wallpaper to minimize the folder and 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 contents on the folder will fill the screen. You can drag apps out to remove them from the folder (they're not deleted, just taken out of the folder). Edit the folder's name by tapping on the text. Click the Home button to save your changes
  1. To delete a folder, simply drag all the apps out of it and the folder disappears. Then press the Home button to save that change.

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, they're from the Games category of the App Store, the suggested name of the grouping is Games. 

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 by dragging it to the main area of the home screen and then drag a folder into the empty space left behind.

Making Folders on the iPhone 6S

Making folders on the iPhone 6S 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. Just a light tap and hold is enough.