Android Friends, Apple Might Let iOS 18 Put Icons Anywhere on Home Screens

iPhone 15 Pro Max

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We try not to poke too much fun at Apple these days when they add features to iOS that have been on Android for years. Not only is it kind of a played-out move, but Google and Android certainly borrow from the other side as well. That said, we have to make exceptions from time to time when something so wild is on the horizon that you almost can’t believe it.

Apple is expected to show off iOS 18 at their developer event in June and the rumors so far suggest it’ll be one of the mobile platform’s biggest updates ever. One of the key areas getting a lot of talk at the moment is in home screen customization, because this is an area that Apple has lagged behind Android.

While Apple finally let people add widgets to home screens in 2020 with iOS 14, they have continued to force the oddest of layouts on users that push all icons to the top of a page, filling up each space in a row and sorting them before going to the next. In other words, you have never been able to just add an icon to any specific home screen spot – Apple and iOS always forced everything to be next to each other in row after row as they flow down each home screen page.

As far back as I can recall (to the launch of this site in 2009 with the Motorola DROID), Android has let you grab an icon and drop it onto a specific spot on any page and in any row or column. For many of us, that means a home screen dock of apps with another batch of our most-used apps just above it on the bottom home screen rows, because then we can easily reach those apps at the bottom of the screen. In iOS or on an iPhone, some of your most used apps may sit at the top of a home screen, forcing you to reach all of the way to the top in order to open them. It’s bad UX design, that’s for sure.

In iOS 18, Apple is now rumored to be giving up on this forced sorting to the top of home screens. Apple is reportedly (according to MacRumors) going to allow iOS users to place appsĀ anywhere on home screens. There will still be a grid, like we have on all phones, but setting up an iPhone like we have done on Android for over a decade could soon be a thing.

It’s crazy to consider that sometimes the most basic of ideas that were around on Android from day 1 have never come to an iPhone. And this is a huge deal to iPhone users! Here are people asking for it in 2014 and 2015, but I’d imagine there are requests well before those. It’s the headline of the moment in the iOS world and comments around the idea are (rightfully) clowning on it. This should have happened so long ago, yet I still hope Apple is about to tell us why they waited. They probably won’t, I just wish they would.



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