Organize apps on Android so you can be more productive

Owning an Android phone is a lot of fun. There are apps that help you with everything in your daily life, from managing your finances, improving your productivity and even controlling your smart home.

Unfortunately with all these features come a ton of apps and the many icons you use to launch them. If you don’t do anything to organize apps on your Android, you’ll end up with a complete mess. And if your apps are a mess, they take longer to find and use.

In this article, you’ll learn how to organize the apps on your Android so that you can work more efficiently with whatever you use your Android for.

Start deleting all unused apps

Before you start organizing the apps on your Android, you really need to clean up the apps drawer. Just swipe up from the home screen and start swiping right. Check out the apps listed on each page and decide if you really ever use that app.

When you realize you really don’t need an app, long press the icon and then tap remove from the pop-up menu.

Continue this with every unused app, on every app drawer page. When you’re done, not only will you have less clutter, but you’ll also be able to uninstall apps that might be drain your phone’s resources and battery† It’s a win win!

Clean up your home screens

To redesign your more efficient Android experience, you have to start over. Go to your home screen and long press an app icon. Tap Select from the pop-up menu.

You will see a blue check mark on the app icon. Tap the other icons to select them as well, then tap remove in the menu at the top.

You can also clear the Quick-Access apps you don’t use at the bottom of the screen by long-pressing the icon and selecting remove

Finally, long press an empty space on the home screen. You will see the screen shrink with borders around it. Swipe left to go to the blank screens you cleaned up by removing app icons. Tap the trash can icon at the top to delete each blank page.

Remark: Keep at least three blank pages available. These will love all widgets and apps that you will add in the next steps. Most people only need three pages, but you may need more. You can add these by tapping the plus icon on the farthest page to the right.

Organize your apps drawer automatically

The next step is to get rid of all the empty clutter in your app drawer, now that you’ve uninstalled all the apps you don’t need.

To do this, tap the three dots icon in the top right corner of the screen and tap Clean up pages† This will clear any empty space on your apps drawer pages.

Then tap the three dots icon again and this time tap Kindand then tap Alphabetical order

Now all app icons are packed close together and sorted alphabetically. This makes the next step of organizing apps on your Android phone much easier.

Organize apps into folders

Still in the app drawer, select an app and drag the icon over an icon for an app in a similar category. For example, you can drag the Twitter icon over the Facebook icon.

This will open the folder creation page, with both icons in the bottom box. Give the folder an appropriate name, then tap an empty space to return to the apps drawer.

Keep repeating this process with other apps. And drag additional icons that fit into a folder over the icon for that folder in the apps drawer.

As you work through the apps, you will see all the folders at the top of the first app drawer page. When you’re done, you should only have folders and no more app icons.

You may also consider changing the folder’s color to distinguish it from others. Also psychologically people quickly learn what colors mean. After a while, you don’t even have to read the folder name anymore to know which folder to tap.

This only saves a few seconds, but if you want to work more efficiently, every second counts.

Rebuild your home screens

Now comes the fun part. You can now redesign everything about the home screens.

First, if you have a Samsung device, swipe all the way to the left-most screen and long-press on the page. Turn off the switch at the top right. This is a “Samsung Free” area. This is a content aggregator and it’s mostly an annoyance.

You can leave all widgets on your first home screen as you will be adding more to build your more useful and efficient home screen.

Add widgets to your home screen

Long press an empty space on the home screen and tap Widgets† Your first one or two home screens should be devoted to the apps you use most often. Widgets allow you to display information from those apps without opening them, which can save a lot of time.

Scroll through your available widgets and choose the ones you open often. Select the widget that contains the information you want to glance at when you look at your phone.

For example, you can use the . to add google calendar daily widget below the Google Search widget

You can resize the widget to allow enough space for the other widgets you want on the page.

like you use a to-do app regularly, there’s probably a widget for that too. Add that widget to see your daily to-do list right on the home screen.

Consider other things you want to see at a glance, such as the weather, news, and more.

Go to the next home screen page and keep adding additional widgets as desired.

For example, in this case we added:

  • A quick control widget for Spotify
  • Messaging app icons to quickly open private chats with people I text often
  • An Evernote widget to quickly take notes, save photos, or make voice recordings
  • Gmail widget that allows me to scan my most recent emails

You can still access these apps if you wish by simply tapping the widget itself.

Add app folders to the home screen

Finally, on the final home screen pages, put your new app icon folders. To do this, long press the folder icon in the apps drawer and tap Add to Home

This will create an icon on your home screen page for that folder.

Continue this process for each of the folders of apps you use most often. You don’t have to add them all, as you can always go back to the apps drawer to open the ones you use less often.

Placing fewer folder icons on your home screen gives you more room for more useful widgets.

Again, coloring folders here only requires a long press on the icon and choosing a background color.

By now, you’ll find that you’ve probably significantly reduced the number of apps drawer pages and home screen pages.

That means less swiping to find frequently used apps. And by using widgets, you may not have to swipe at all to see the information you want.

You will be amazed at how much time an organized Android phone can save. And by spending less time fiddling with your phone, you get more time to focus on more important things in your life.

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