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How to add widgets to your iPhone and iPad

Boost the power of your iOS device with useful widgets.
By
June 14, 2022

One feature that Android has had for ages, but Apple has only just introduced, is screen widgets. Widgets are extremely useful for bringing the information you need to your screen without having to open the actual app. If you want to know the weather or start Apple Music (for example), just look at or tap the widget. If widgets are something you’d like to start using on your iPhone or iPad, here’s how to add them, manage them, or remove them.

Read more: Apple iPhone 13 buyer’s guide — everything you need to know

QUICK ANSWER

To add a widget to your iPhone or iPad screen, just hold a finger down on the screen until the icons start shaking. A + sign in the top left-hand corner will have now appeared. Tap that and the widgets gallery will pop up. Select the widget you want and tap the Add Widget button for it to appear on your screen. Use your finger to move it to the right position.


JUMP TO KEY SECTIONS

How to add widgets on iOS

ios ipad widgets
Mark O'Neill / Android Authority

To add a widget, first hold a finger down on the screen until the icons start shaking. When they do, a + sign in the top left-hand corner will appear.

ios screen icon

Tap that and the widgets gallery will pop up.

ios widgets gallery

Select the widget you want and tap the Add Widget button for it to appear on your screen. There are usually several different styles of the widget, depending on how big you would like it.

ios add widget

Once on the screen, use your finger to move it to the right position. By default, it will hit your main screen which will move any icons there out of the way. So you may want it on another screen. Just drag the widget to the right of the screen for it to jump to the next screen.

iphone widgets
Mark O'Neill / Android Authority

How to manage your widgets on iOS

If you are a neat freak, or you want to have multiple widgets on your screen without a lot of clutter, there’s a function called stacking. This is where you can have virtually countless widgets occupying the same space on your screen — and you just flick through them to find the one you want.

There is one caveat though. You can only stack widgets of the same size, not different sizes. So you can’t stack a small widget and a big widget together. All the small ones need to be stacked together and all the big ones are stacked together separately.

To stack them, just put the widgets on your screen separately. Then use your finger to drag one on top of the other. Release your finger and then flick up and down. You should now be able to move effortlessly between the widgets.

How to remove widgets on iOS

If you want to remove a widget at any time, all you need to do is long-press on it and a menu will pop up.

iOS remove widget

Select Remove Widget and watch it disappear. Of course, you can get it again from the widget gallery if you have deleter’s remorse.


Read more: Apple iPhone 14 — everything we know so far

FAQs

No, the company behind the app has to take the time to make the widget and have it approved by Apple. Not all companies feel the need to do this, and a lot likely don’t have the budget or number of users to justify making a widget.

No, widgets are tightly controlled by Apple for security reasons, and at the moment, a developer can’t make say their own Gmail widget and sell it in the App Store. In the future, this may change but Apple has not said anything on this subject so far.