Managing Apps on your iPhone: Categorise & Search | #ProductivityBiz with Tracey Foulkes




Tracey-Foulkes-CoveriPhone Apps are a far cry from the technology stored in the Nokia brick – remind me, didn’t we have to hold it with 2 hands? – and its potential revolutionary impact on our personal productivity. Now I fear it’s lead to far worse demons (AKA: the iPhone and iPad) which disrupt both my pre (and post) dream routine.



Productivity expert, Tracey Foulkes, in conversation on
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If you are an app hoarder, scrolling screens and trolling miscellaneous folders in search of the illusive latest downloads or i If you dare not even read (forget the implementing) our post on clearing the app clutter, here’s how to pull yourself towards yourself and get organised:


If you own an iPhone running on iOS 4.0 or later (that’s you, right!), you can create app folders to store and categorise your applications in a flash. This means you can have over 2000 apps stored in an organised way which will keep your wife very happy indeed (Doug, please read this!) and your personal productivity well boosted.

  1.  Press and hold on an app until the app icons start to jiggle as if you were going to rearrange your apps.
  2. Drag one app on top of another and you’ll have created a new folder containing both apps. You can stick with the default name or rename as you wish.
  3. Now for the clincher (this is where Doug comes unstuck)… keep dragging and dropping additional app icons into this and new folders. Tip: Create a folder called “Testing” and drag new apps into it until you know you love it and will use it.

Some useful stuff to know:

  • An iPhone can hold 12 apps per folder
  • You can have 16 folders per screen
  • You can have as many as 11 screens


Now this is so easy I can’t believe I am even typing it, but if you don’t know what I’m about to tell you, this will be some welcome personal productivity boosting info … promise!

Accessing Spotlight Search

Just above the dock and to the left of the little buttons (dots) that indicate the number of screens in use on your phone, there is a teeny tiny little magnifying glass, click on this and you are in ‘Spotlight Search’. And if your fingers are fatter than that of a toothpick, you might prefer to access the Spotlight window by swiping your screen from left to right (like scrolling back a page/screen).  You will now see a screen with a little rectangular box reading “Search iPhone”. The keyboard will be open below it.

Searching in Spotlight

Search results in Spotlight are sorted by the application the result belongs to. Scroll through the results and tap on the one you’re looking for.

Changing default settings in Spotlight

Now if you have more time on your hands than me, or if you are just super keen to be fabulously organised, you can control the types of data that Spotlight will search for and/or change the order the data appears.  Here’s how:

  • Go to ‘Settings’
  • Click on ‘General’
  • Scroll down and click on ‘Spotlight Search’
  • You can now tick or untick from the list of searchable items.
  • This screen shows the order in which the search results will be displayed. To juggle this order, tap and hold the 3 little bars next to the item and drag and drop as desired.


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