How to Close Apps on the iPhone

Kill apps that are locked up or using up data

What to Know

  • IPhone X and newer: Swipe up half way and pause to reveal the multitasking view. Then swipe the app up and off the top.
  • iPhone 8 and 7: Double-click the Home button. Slide the apps to find the one to quit. Swipe the app up and off the top.
  • iOS 6 and below: Double-click the Home button and slide apps to find the one to quit. Tap and hold the app. Tap the red badge.

This article explains how to quit an app on the iPhone. Instructions apply to all devices that have iOS 6 or newer.

How to Quit or Close Apps on iPhone X and Newer

The process of quitting apps on the iPhone X and newer models, such as the iPhone XR and iPhone 11, is a bit different from earlier iPhones. That's because these models don't have a Home button, so the way you access the multitasking screen is different. Here's how to do it:

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and pause about halfway up the screen to reveal the multitasking view.

  2. Swipe the app you want to close up and off the top of the screen.

    If you have a version of iOS 11, the process is slightly different. On that, in the multitasking view, tap and hold the app until a red - (minus sign) appears. Then, tap the minus sign to close the app.

  3. Tap the wallpaper or swipe up from the bottom again to return to the Home screen.

How to Quit or Close Apps on iPhone 8 and 7

If you have the iPhone 8 or iPhone 7, quitting apps is super simple. Here's what you need to know:

  1. To access the Fast App Switcher feature, double-click the Home button. That action causes the apps to fall back a bit so that you can see the icons and screenshots of all the running apps.

  2. Slide the apps from side to side to find the one you want to quit.

  3. Swipe the app off the top edge of the screen to close it.

  4. When you've closed all the apps you want, click the Home button again to return to using your iPhone.

In iOS 7 and up, you can quit multiple apps at the same time. Just swipe up to three apps to the top of the screen at the same time. All the apps you swipe disappear.

How to Quit or Close Apps on iOS 6

To close apps on iPhone 6, the process is similar. However, if you updated the operating system beyond iOS 6, refer to the instructions above.

  1. Double-click the Home button to reveal a row of apps below the dock.

  2. Slide to the app you want to quit.

  3. Tap and hold the app until a red badge with a - (minus sign) appears. The apps wiggle like they do when you're rearranging them.

  4. Tap the minus sign to close the app.

  5. Repeat the process for additional apps. Click the Home button when you finish closing apps.

How to Close Apps on Older iPhones

If you have an old version of the iOS that doesn't include multitasking, hold down the Home button at the bottom center of the iPhone for about six seconds to quit the current app and return to the main Home screen. If it doesn't, you may need to reset the device.

This doesn't work on recent versions of the OS. On them, holding down the Home button activates Siri.

Closing Apps Doesn't Save Battery Life

There is a popular belief that quitting apps running in the background can save battery life even when the apps aren't being used. However, that has been proven to be incorrect and can even hurt the battery life.

  • How do I hide apps on an iPhone?

    To hide apps on an iPhone, launch the App Store app and tap your profile picture. On the Account screen, tap Purchased to view the apps you've downloaded. Tap All; find the app you want to hide, swipe left, and then tap Hide.

  • How do I unhide apps on an iPhone?

    To unhide apps on an iPhone, swipe right to left on the Home screen to open the App Library. Tap the search bar to see an alphabetical list of apps. Find the app you want to unhide and tap and hold its name. Slide your finger to the left without releasing the app to move it to your home screen.

  • How do I delete apps on an iPhone?

    To delete apps from your iPhone, find the app you want to delete and tap and hold the app icon. Tap Remove app. You can also tap and hold an empty space on the home screen until all icons start wiggling; tap the minus sign on the corner of the app icon and select Delete App.

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