iOS 18 could finally let you properly customize your iPhone's Home Screen

FitnessTotals app widgets being shown on an iPhone iOS 14 home screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock - Alim Yakubov / FitnessTotals)

Apple’s iOS does a lot of things well, but one area it struggles with is customization. If you really want to shake up your Home Screen and design it according to your tastes, your options are a bit limited.

Fortunately, that might soon change, if Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman is to be believed. In the paid-for section of his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman claims that iOS 18 will introduce a “more customizable” Home Screen that could change the way your iPhone looks for good.

Gurman’s report didn’t go into specifics, but we’ve had a bit more insight into the matter thanks to some digging by MacRumors. The outlet claims it has spoken to sources who say that users will be able to “arrange icons more freely on iOS 18,” including “the ability to create blank spaces, rows, and columns between app icons.” Icons will still be arranged on an invisible grid to keep a degree of order and uniformity, but this new system sounds a lot more flexible than what you can currently do in iOS.

Hopefully it means it will be a lot more straightforward to get the Home Screen arrangement you want, without having to employ all manner of third-party apps and longwinded workarounds. That said, we won’t know for sure until Apple unveils iOS 18 at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), which will likely take place in early June.

AI on the iPhone

iPhone 13 mini

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Speaking of WWDC, Gurman’s Power On newsletter shed a little more light on what we can expect at the show, especially when it comes to Apple’s artificial intelligence (AI) efforts. It comes after much speculation that Apple was planning to team up with one or more AI developers (such as Google or OpenAI) to bring proper generative AI to iOS.

According to Gurman, though, “you shouldn’t expect a big focus on ChatGPT-like generative AI features.” Even if those features do appear, they won’t be the main crux of the event, Gurman explained.

Instead, “prepare to see a slew of AI tools that help manage your daily life,” Gurman said. Again, there wasn’t much in the way of specifics, but previous reports have claimed Apple will bring AI tools to apps like Apple Music, Pages and more. That suggests we could see something like Microsoft Copilot and Spotify’s AI DJ rolled into one.

Right now, we don’t have a lot to go on. But if Gurman is right and Apple is treating iOS 18 as “the biggest update to iOS since the original iPhone,” there could be a lot to look forward to this summer.

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Alex Blake
Freelance Contributor

Alex Blake has been fooling around with computers since the early 1990s, and since that time he's learned a thing or two about tech. No more than two things, though. That's all his brain can hold. As well as TechRadar, Alex writes for iMore, Digital Trends and Creative Bloq, among others. He was previously commissioning editor at MacFormat magazine. That means he mostly covers the world of Apple and its latest products, but also Windows, computer peripherals, mobile apps, and much more beyond. When not writing, you can find him hiking the English countryside and gaming on his PC.