How many apps do you have on your iPhone? The average user has more than 100, so chances are you have a good amount. (And chances are people reading an article like this have more than the average.) The problem isn’t that people have so many apps. The problem is that having so many apps makes home screens difficult to manage. Folders help keep the number of home screens reasonable, but there’s still the issue of moving icons around. And using the primary way to move icons, it can be a big pain.
Traditional icon moving
The traditional way to move icons is known to essentially every iPhone user. Just tap and hold an icon until all the icons start to shake. Then press and hold an icon to drag it somewhere else. You can even drag icons across multiple home screens, so you can really move it anywhere.
Problem is, when you place an icon on a new home screen, the last item gets bumped to the next home screen. It can create quite a ripple effect. At the same time, many users have half-filled home screens that become difficult to fill. For instance, when I updated to iOS 6 it bumped the last icon off my home screen in favor of Passbook. But instead of putting it on an already existing home screen it created a whole new one, with a single icon on it. Big pain.
Moving multiple icons
So far as I’ve researched, there is no way to simply condense all icons. That would come in pretty handy. (If anyone knows of an app that does that, please leave it in the comments.) Right now the only way to move icons is to do it the traditional way. But there is a hack that helps.
Go to one of your last home screens, one with at least four open spots for it. When you move icons, move the four icons in your bottom dock onto the home screen. Your bottom dock then becomes your transporter. You can move up to four icons at a time, using blank spaces to move icons on other home screens so the icons don’t bleed over.
Say you have a first home screen with the full 16 icons. You want to move four icons from your third home screen there. To do this:
1. Go to your fourth home screen.
2. Press and hold an icon.
3. Drag icons from the bottom dock onto the fourth home screen.
4. Scroll back to the first home screen
5. Drag the four icons you want to replace onto the bottom dock
6. Scroll to the closest home screen with four open slots and dump the icons there.
7. Go to the third home screen.
8. Drag the four icons to the bottom dock.
9. Go to first home screen and place icons there.
10. Go to fourth home screen and place original icons back in the bottom dock.
That might seem overly complicated, but it makes the task much easier if you’re moving multiple icons.