What to know before you change iPhone app icons:
- Ensure you have the desired images in the Photos app or Files app.
You can use images clicked by your iPhone, downloaded from the internet, icon packs bought from sites like Icons8, etc.
- The customized app icons will not show notification badges.
- The process is straightforward but it will take time to customize dozens of app icons.
Using the inbuilt iPhone Shortcuts app, you can set any picture as your Home Screen app icon to get a unique, exciting look. You can use images of your friends, favorite superheroes, cartoons, or anything you like instead of the actual iOS app icons. Let us jump straight in and learn how to change app icons on iPhone running iOS 13 and later.
How to customize app icons on iPhone (iOS 14 or above)
The steps and the screenshots below are from an iPhone running iOS 15. If you are on iOS 14, the steps are similar, but there may be some visual changes in screenshots.
- Open the Shortcuts app and go to the “My Shortcuts” tab.
- Tap the + icon at the top right.
- Tap Add Action.
- Now, tap Scripting.
If you do not see this, use the search bar to find it.
- Tap Open App.
- Tap the light blue “App” word and select the desired app whose icon you wish to create on the Home screen.
- Next, tap the more icon at the top right (see image).
- Tap Add to Home Screen.
- Tap the tiny image at the bottom left and choose an image from the Files app, Photos app, or take a photo.
- Delete the New Shortcut text and replace it with the App Name.
Tip: Want no app name below the app icon to have a cleaner Home screen look? Leave the name field blank.
- Finally, tap Add.
You will see the App Shortcut with the desired app icon you set on the iPhone Home screen. Repeat this process for all other apps you want.
To open the app, tap the new app icon. If you are on iOS 14.3 and later, the app will directly open. However, if you are on an earlier iOS version, the Shortcuts app will open first, followed by the actual app. To fix this annoyance, make sure you update your iPhone.
What to do after changing app icons
After you follow the above steps multiple times and create a handful of custom app icons, you would want to get rid of the actual standard app icons to have an exciting look. Because what’s the point of having two app icons for the same app?
Press the actual app icon and tap Remove App → Remove from Home Screen. Now, this app icon is no longer on your Home Screen but in the App Library.
Next, use a combination of iOS Widgets, third-party widgets like Widgetsmith, and the customized app icons to have a truly unique iPhone Home screen appearance! It requires some minutes, but the results are fantastic after that, as confirmed from the Tweets below!
Extra info: Some apps like Reddit and Over offer you an internal way to use a different (not custom) app icon. You will find this in their respective app settings.
Did you change the app icon on your iPhone? If yes, what did you set as your app icon? Share your answers in the comments below.
Check out next: