How to manage apps in the app drawer for Messages in iOS

The app drawer is an important part of the Messages interface, so it’s a good idea to customize it based on your usage.

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When you are typing a message in Messages, that row of colored icons at the top of the keyboard (just above the QWERTY row), is called the app drawer. The app drawer allows you to access different assets that you can use in your messages. For example, if you want to use a sticker, you can tap on the sticker pack in the app drawer, and a selection of stickers will appear.

The app drawer is an important part of the Messages interface, so it’s a good idea to customize it based on your usage. There are a few ways you can do this, which we’ll cover here.

Before we begin, you should know that the app drawer is divided into two sections. The first section is called the Favorites section. If you swipe the app drawer to the left, you’ll see a line at the end of Favorites. Then you’ll find the second section, called More Apps.

How to remove an app from Favorites in the app drawer

The first section of icons that appear in the app drawer are your Favorites. You can’t remove Photos and the App Store from the list, but you can manage the rest of the items.

1. Tap and hold the app drawer.

2. Swipe to the left until you get to the end of the drawer. You should find a More button. Tap it.

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3. This will take you to a list of the items that appear in the app drawer. Tap Edit.

4. Tap the red “—” icon next to the item you want to remove.

5. iOS will want your confirmation by showing a Remove from Favorites button. Tap it.

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6. The item will be moved to the More Apps section.

How to rearrange the order of Favorites in the app drawer

You’re only allowed to rearrange the order of Favorites. Unfortunately, there’s no way to rearrange the order of More Apps, the apps that appear after Favorites.

1. Tap and hold the app drawer.

2. Swipe to the left until you get to the end of the drawer. You should find a More button. Tap it.

3. This will take you to a list of the items that appear in the app drawer. Tap Edit.

4. Tap and hold the rearrange icon (the three lines) on the right of the item you want to move.

5. Drag the item to where you want it.

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How to remove apps from the the app drawer

The app drawer can get crowded. You can remove apps you don’t want in there. Here’s how.

1. Tap and hold the app drawer.

2. Swipe to the left until you get to the end of the drawer. You should find a More button. Tap it.

3. This will take you to a list of the items that appear in the app drawer. Tap Edit.

4. To remove an item from the Favorites section, tap the red “–” icon to the left of the item. (It will be moved to the More Apps section.)

5. To remove an item that appears after the Favorites list, go to the More Apps section, and then tap the switch for the item you want to remove to turn it off.

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6. Tap Done when you are done.

If you want to add the item back to the app drawer, just repeat the steps above and flip the item’s switch on. If you want to add it to Favorites, tap the red “+” icon next to it.

This story, "How to manage apps in the app drawer for Messages in iOS" was originally published by Macworld.

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