Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

Forget AI, iOS 18 finally has a home screen feature people have been begging for

Published May 27th, 2024 9:08AM EDT
iPhone 15 Pro Dynamic Island
Image: Christian de Looper for BGR

If you buy through a BGR link, we may earn an affiliate commission, helping support our expert product labs.

The main attraction of iOS 18 will be the AI features that Apple is building into the operating system. However, iOS 18 will not be just about generative AI tricks and ChatGPT or Gemini integration.

A new report detailing Apple’s new features for iOS 18 details one simple but meaningful change that people have spent years begging for. If Mark Gurman’s information is accurate, iPhone and iPad users will finally be able to place apps anywhere on the screen rather than having to conform to the grid of apps that Apple has used since the original iPhone. And yes, widgets will likely get the same freedom.

Gurman wrote in his latest report on Bloomberg that iOS 18 will revamp the Home Screen. It’ll be a “fun improvement” that’s not related to AI.

Apple will let you change the color of app icons and put them wherever you like, the insider wrote:

For instance, you can make all your social icons blue or finance-related ones green — and they won’t need to be placed in the standard grid that has existed since day one in 2007.

Gurman made similar claims about two months ago. At the time, he said iOS 18 would make the Home Screen more customizable without offering any details. But a separate report from MacRumors noted that Apple planned let iPhone users place apps anywhere on the screen rather than forcing the grid layout we all know so well.

I’ve always been a fan of the Android Home Screen, where you can place apps anywhere you like. There’s a grid at play there, too, yes. But apps will not autoarrange themselves on it when you install a new app.

I don’t like the iPhone app arrangement system because it feels too crowded. I say that as someone who doesn’t have any apps on my desktop. I’d want a similar look on the iPhone.

Between the introduction of folders, widgets, and the App Gallery Home Screen, I’ve managed to give myself the impression that the Home Screens I use on iPhone aren’t as crowded. I also hide screens of apps that I need only in certain instances to help me navigate the iPhone faster. That helps me reduce the number of folders and extra Home Screens I use at any given time.

I can’t wait for this rumored iOS 18 feature to roll out. I won’t mess with the app icon colors, though I’m sure many iPhone users will love that level of UI customization. But I’ll certainly rearrange my iPhone apps to free up more space on the screen as soon as I install the first iOS 18 beta.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.