Tuesday 21 January 2020

Apple may finally let you hide iPhone default apps from June

An iPhone lock screen
An iPhone lock screen

Rhiannon Williams

iPhone owners may soon finally be able to hide Apple's default apps for good, new code suggests.

The 32 apps, including Apple Watch, Stocks and Compass, are currently undeletable, as chief executive Tim Cook has previously said getting rid of them could render the handset unusable as some are linked to other native apps.

For example, deleting Apple Maps could hinder Siri's ability to give accurate directions, and getting rid of the phone app could leave you unable to make calls.

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Apple appears to have recently added keys to iTunes metadata, suggesting the apps could be hidden on a more permanent basis than just storing them in folders. The lines of code read "isFirstParty" and "isFirstPartyHideableApp," and are currently set to "false", according to AppAdvice.

The company is set to hold its annual worldwide developers conference (WWDC) in June, where it tends to announce new software releases for iOS and OS X, meaning we may have to wait a few months to see the keys turned on.

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Cook has previously acknowledged how frustrated users are at not being able to adequately hide the defaults, saying: "I recognise that some people want to do this, and it's something we are looking at."

"We’ll figure out a way [for you to remove them]. … It’s not that we want to suck up your real estate; we’re not motivated to do that. We want you to be happy," he added.

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The most recent update for iPhone and iPad software, iOS 9.3, was released last month.


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