How to Alphabetize Apps on an iPad

By David Weedmark

If you have a lot of apps on your iPad or iPhone, alphabetizing them is a quick way to keep them organized. Here are a few tricks to do it quickly.

Alphabetizing your apps on an iPad or iPhone is a good way to find the app you want without resorting to the Search feature. If you only have a few apps, dragging and dropping them into alphabetical order is the fastest way to do it. However, if you have a lot of apps, use the Reset Home Screen Layout option in iOS 8.

Drag, Drag and Drag Again

Step 1

Touch any app for about two seconds until all the apps start to vibrate and apps that you downloaded from the App Store display an X in the corner. This indicates that the Home screens are in Editing mode. Apps that don't display the X are part of the iOS and can't be removed, but they can be alphabetized manually.

Step 2

Drag the app to its new position.

Drag any app to its correct position in the alphabet. The other apps will make room for it. If you need to move an app from one screen to another, drag it to the edge of the current Home screen and the next Home screen will appear automatically.

Step 3

Press the Home button to exist Editing mode.

Repeat this same process for all of your apps. When the apps are alphabetized, press the Home button to exit Editing mode.


While alphabetizing your apps, as soon as any Home screen is empty, it disappears when you press the Home button -- except the first Home screen. If you move all the apps from the first Home screen, the empty screen doesn't go away.

Reset the Home Screen Layout

Resetting the Home screen layout alphabetizes all the apps you downloaded from the App Store. The apps that came installed with your iOS 8 are not alphabetized, but they are placed conveniently on the first Home screen.

Step 1

Select Reset.

Tap the Settings icon on the Home screen. Select General, scroll to the bottom of the screen and select Reset.

Step 2

Reset the Home screen layout.

Tap the Reset Home Screen Layout option. After you tap the Confirmation icon, all your downloaded apps are alphabetized beginning on the second screen. The iPad's original installed apps are positioned on the first Home screen.

Step 3

Alphabetize the apps.

To alphabetize the iPad's original installed apps now located on the first Home screen, do it manually. Touch an app for two seconds to put the Home screen into Editing mode. Begin alphabetizing the apps by dragging the App Store icon to the upper-left corner.

Use a Folder for Mass Transit

Drag the later-alphabet apps into the folder.

If you have many dozens of apps, you'll find that dragging an app across four or five screens can become tedious. Group apps that are in the same range of the alphabet into a folder. Then drag the folder to the correct screen and drag the apps out again.

For people with a lot of apps, organizing them into folders may be more time-efficient than alphabetizing them.