How to use widgets on the Home Screen in iOS 14


Widgets have been completely redesigned in iOS 14 and allow you to keep important information on the Home Screen. We’ll show you how to use these widgets and more on your Apple devices.

Widgets have been an iOS feature in the Today View since iOS 10, when apps could begin showing widgets on both the Today section of Notification Center and when users long-pressed on an app icon on the Home Screen.

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In iOS 14, the widgets and the system to display them have been completely revamped from the ground up. The old style of widgets (and their interact-ability) has been changed as well, leaving a new uniform style guide for widgets that look great on the Home Screen.

Yes, you heard right, widgets in iOS 14 don’t have to be siloed to the Today View, instead they can be placed on the Home Screen alongside your app icons. Continue reading to learn more about how widgets work and how to add them to your Home Screen. 

How to view widgets in the Today View

You can view your widgets in the Today View as you always have by swiping left to right on the home screen and navigating to the very first Home Screen page. You can also access it on the Lock Screen or Notification Center by swiping right (Figure A). 

Figure A 

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To do this, enter jiggle mode by tapping and holding on an empty space on the Home Screen, or a widget or app icon. Once the icons and widgets begin jiggling, tap and hold on the widget, then drag and drop it on top of another same-sized widget. The two widgets will then be merged into a single widget (Figure D). 

Figure D 

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Tapping and holding on a widget stack, then selecting “Edit Stack” lets you choose the ordering or remove widgets from the stack. There’s also another feature called “Smart Rotate” that will automatically rotate ordering of the widgets based on the time of day, how frequently you access them, and other criteria.

Where are the widgets for iPadOS?

iPadOS 14 includes a notably missing feature: Widgets are not available on the Home Screen. We’re not entirely sure why Apple decided to not include widgets on the Home Screen for iPad users.

You can still add the Today View permanently left-pinned on the first Home Screen in iPadOS; however, the individual widgets cannot be placed in-line with app icons.

To enable this feature:

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Select Home Screen & Dock 
  3. Enable the option for “Keep Today View on Home Screen”

Once this is enabled, the Home Screen on iPadOS will always show the Today View pinned to the left of the first Home Screen page.

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