If you've spent time re-arranging the app icons on the Home screen of your iPad or iPhone then you'll have noticed they always snap together. While you can move an app icon anywhere on an iPhone or iPad, it always sits next to the last app icon, you can't leave a gap.

This trick enables you to add blank app icons to the home screen of an iPhone or iPad, and use them to space out the display of apps.

Why would you want to have gaps on your iPhone or iPad screen? Well, owners of the iPhone 6 Plus may dislike having the apps at the top of the screen. While these can be reached using Reachability (double-tapping the Home button brings the apps icons briefly down), you might prefer to permanently position your icons in reach of your thumb.

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If you want to space out the app icons on your iPhone, perhaps to make them easier to see, to make them easier to tap if you have fat fingers, or so that you can reach them one handed on a larger iPhone screen, it is possible to add gaps to push the icons down. This trick enables you to group together apps with a gap separating them from other apps. Here's how:

How to add blank app icons to your Home screen

Adding a blank background to the Home screen

iPhone user David Smith has created a nifty technique that combines a blank background with blank icons that you can add to your home screen. These can be used to put spaces between individual apps, or a whole row of blank spaces can bring the app icons down.

Follow this tutorial to insert blank app icons and move your icons down:

  1. Open this website on your iPhone and download the iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus Black Wallpaper.
  2. Tap and hold the black square image till a menu pops up.
  3. Tap Save Image.
  4. Press the Home button and choose Settings > Wallpaper > Choose New Wallpaper > All Photos.
  5. Tap the black image you just saved and choose Set > Set Home Screen. Press the Home button to view the blank background.
  6. Tap the Safari icon to reopen Safari.  Open this webpage to view a web page containing a blank icon.
  7. Tap Share > Add to Home Screen.
  8. Do not enter anything into the Title field (it is filled with a blank character). Tap Add.

You now have a blank icon on the home screen. You won't be able to see it though (that's the point). You can now move it around to space out your icons.

How to reposition blank icons on the Home screen

Reposition icons on the Home screen

You can reposition the blank app icon on the Home screen to space out apps. The only problem is that you won't be able to see it. Follow these steps to find the blank icon.

  1. Tap and hold an app icon to put the Home screen in "jiggle mode".
  2. You will now be able to spot the blank icon because it'll have a grey remove (x) icon. Tap and hold beneath the Remove icon to select the app icon.
  3. Drag it to reposition.

You can use this blank app icon to insert spaces between your current app icons. Repeat the process to add three more icons (remember not to give them names). You can use the four blank icons to form a row. This is used to push all of the app icons down. Tap the Remove icon to get rid of them. If you accidentally tap the blank icon it'll open Safari at David Smith's web page (with instructions).