How to Find Hidden Apps on iPhone in 2024

Your iPhone holds a treasure trove of apps. While your home screens showcase colorful icons and handy apps, your iPhone may contain hidden apps lurking out of sight.

Uncovering these concealed apps enables you to explore the full functionality of your iPhone. You gain access to built-in tools you may not know exist. Finding hidden iPhone apps also allows you to weed out unwanted apps installed without your knowledge.

In this complete guide, you’ll learn multiple ways to find and access hidden iPhone apps. With a few simple taps and swipes, you can unmask all the apps on your iPhone.

Why Do Apps Become Hidden on iPhones?

Before diving into the steps to locate hidden iPhone apps, it helps to understand why apps disappear in the first place.

There are a few reasons why apps vanish from your home screen and the app library on newer iPhone models:

You Hid the App

The most obvious reason an app goes missing is because you hid it. Hiding apps removes clutter from your home screen. It also eliminates apps you don’t use but don’t want to delete.

Syncing Issues

Sometimes syncing your iPhone causes apps to disappear from view. Connecting to iTunes and enabling iCloud syncing on multiple devices can create app conflicts. The apps still exist on your iPhone but become hidden temporarily.

iOS Glitches

In rare cases, an iOS update or system glitch makes apps disappear. Rebooting your iPhone usually returns them, but sometimes restoring your device is necessary.

Malware and Viruses

Malware and viruses can infect your iPhone and hide your apps. Downloading from untrusted sources increases the risk. Run antivirus software to detect and remove malware.

Where Do Hidden iPhone Apps Go?

Hidden iPhone apps don’t completely vanish. They simply conceal themselves in areas you don’t regularly access.

Here are the most common places to find missing iPhone apps:

  • App Library – The App Library contains all installed iPhone apps in alphabetical order. But you have to swipe through multiple screens to see them all.
  • Search – Searching for an app by name often surfaces hidden apps. But you have to know the app name to search for it.
  • Spotlight Search – You can search for hidden apps via Spotlight. But again, you need to know the app name.
  • iTunes or Finder – Connecting your iPhone to your computer lets you see all installed apps in iTunes or Finder. But this isn’t always convenient.
  • Settings – Hidden paid apps usually appear under your Apple ID profile and purchases in Settings. But free apps won’t show up here.
  • Siri App Suggestions – Siri sometimes suggests opening hidden apps based on your usage patterns. However, it’s not reliable for finding specific apps.

While hidden apps still exist on your phone, accessing them takes extra steps. You have to know where to look and how to reveal them again.

How to Find Hidden Apps on Your iPhone

Uncovering hidden iPhone apps requires using the proper techniques and tools. Here are 12 ways to find and restore missing apps on your iPhone:

1. Search for Apps in the App Library

The App Library on newer iPhones (iOS 14 and up) contains every single app installed on your phone. But scrolling through pages of apps makes it tedious to find one specific hidden app.

To easily access the App Library:

  • Swipe left past all your home screen pages.
  • You can keep swiping left to see all your installed apps in alphabetical order.
  • Tap and hold on an app icon to view related apps.
  • Search for an app by name at the top of the App Library.

Check the App Library first when hunting for hidden apps on your iPhone.

2. Use Siri Voice Commands to Open Apps

Forgot where you hid an app? Ask Siri to open it for you.

For example, say “Hey Siri, open Uber” or “Hey Siri, open YouTube.”

Siri locates and launches hidden apps when asked. This works even if the app doesn’t appear on your home screen.

Voice commands provide a fast shortcut to hidden iPhone apps. But you must know the app name to ask Siri for it.

3. Search for Apps via iPhone Spotlight

Spotlight search scans your iPhone for matching apps, contacts, messages, emails, and more. It’s an easy way to unearth hidden apps.

To find apps with Spotlight:

  • Swipe down from the middle of any home screen.
  • Type the name of the app you want to find. Related apps and app content will appear.
  • Tap the app icon or name to open it.

Use Spotlight search whenever you know the hidden app’s name but can’t find the icon.

4. Check Recently Opened Apps

Even hidden iPhone apps appear in your multitasking view if opened recently. View your recently used apps to uncover and reopen a hidden app.

To view your recent apps:

  • Swipe up from the bottom edge of any screen halfway to show your open apps.
  • Keep swiping up to reveal apps you used recently.
  • Tap any app icon to jump back into the app.

Checking your multitasking view provides a quick way to find apps opened in the past few days or weeks.

5. Reboot Your iPhone

A quick reboot can surface hidden iPhone apps in some cases. Restarting your device essentially refreshes the operating system.

To reboot an iPhone 8 or earlier:

  • Hold the Power button until the “Slide to power off” prompt appears.
  • Drag the slider to turn off your phone.
  • After about 30 seconds, hold the Power button again to restart your device.

For iPhone X and later:

  • Hold the side button and either Volume button until the “Slide to power off” slider shows.
  • Drag the on-screen slider to power down.
  • Wait 30 seconds then hold the side button to boot your iPhone back up.

Restarting your iPhone forces apps to reload properly. Doing so may unhide any glitched apps.

6. Search App Store Purchase History

The App Store keeps a record of all apps and games ever installed on your Apple ID. You can search this purchase history to uncover forgotten downloaded apps.

To view your purchase history:

  • Open the App Store app.
  • Tap your profile picture in the top-right corner.
  • Select Purchases from your account menu. Here you’ll see all apps and games downloaded by your Apple ID.
  • Search for a hidden app by name or browse your purchase history.
  • Tap an app to redownload it from the App Store.

Checking your purchase history reveals apps you forgot you installed. You can download them again in one tap.

7. Connect Your iPhone to a Computer

Connecting your iPhone to a computer and accessing it via iTunes or Finder displays all installed apps. You can see if any apps are missing from your home screen.

To view your iPhone apps on a computer:

  • Connect your iPhone to your computer using the charging cable.
  • Open either iTunes on a PC/Mac or Finder on a Mac.
  • Select your iPhone from the sidebar.
  • Click Apps in the left menu to see a list of all installed applications.
  • Check for any apps not visible on your iPhone home screen.
  • Click and drag missing apps to sync them back onto your iPhone home screen(s).

Syncing your iPhone to iTunes or Finder remains a foolproof way to see all hidden apps.

8. Restore Your iPhone

For serious hidden app problems, a full restore may be necessary. Restoring fixes software glitches and configuration issues causing apps to disappear.

How to restore an iPhone:

  • Connect the iPhone to your computer via USB cable.
  • In iTunes or Finder, make a full device backup first. This saves your data and settings.
  • Click Restore iPhone in iTunes or Finder while your phone is connected. This wipes the device and installs a fresh copy of iOS.
  • Follow the setup prompts to restore your apps and data from the backup.

A full restore eradicates any complex issues hiding your apps. It should make all apps visible again.

9. Check App-Specific Settings

Some apps let you choose whether to display their icon on your home screen. Check an app’s settings menu to make sure its icon visibility isn’t disabled.

For example:

  • Open the Settings app and select the app in question (such as Phone or Safari).
  • Make sure Show on Home Screen is toggled on.
  • Open the app from Settings and it will reappear on your home screen.

The steps vary for different apps. But always check Settings for a “show app” option when troubleshooting a missing icon.

10. Remove and Reinstall the App

If an app acts glitched or frozen, deleting and reinstalling the app may resolve app hiding issues.

Follow these steps:

  • Hold down on the app icon until it jiggles and shows an X icon.
  • Tap the X to delete the problem app.
  • Open the App Store and redownload the app by searching for its name or going to your purchase history.
  • The freshly installed app should appear properly on your home screen.

Deleting and re-downloading forces the iPhone to fully reload the app files. Doing so often fixes inconsistent icon behavior.

11. Update iOS

Apple releases frequent iOS updates to fix bugs and patch problems with iPhones. Updating your system software could resolve a hidden app bug.

To update your iPhone’s iOS version:

  • Open the Settings app and tap General.
  • Choose Software Update and install any available updates.
  • Follow the prompts to download and install new iOS updates.
  • Restart your iPhone after updating to refresh the operating system.

Keep iOS updated to eliminate software bugs hiding your apps. Update immediately if Apple releases a hidden app-related fix.

12. Reset Home Screen Layout

Resetting your iPhone’s home screen to the factory default layout sometimes reveals hidden apps. It removes any problematic customizations causing apps to disappear.

Here’s how to reset your home screen:

  • Go to Settings > General > Reset.
  • Tap Reset Home Screen Layout to revert to the default layout.
  • Your hidden apps may appear normally again after the reset completes.
  • You can then reorganize your newly visible apps however you prefer.

If a glitch hides apps after rearranging home screens, resetting the layout often fixes it.

Where Else to Look for Hidden iPhone Apps

Beyond the tips covered above, a few other places exist where you may uncover hidden iPhone apps:

  • Siri App Suggestions – Open a blank Spotlight search screen, and Siri may recommend apps you haven’t used in a while.
  • iPhone Storage – In Settings > General > iPhone Storage, scroll down to see a list of all apps installed on your phone.
  • App Subscriptions – Open the App Store, tap your profile, and go to Subscriptions to see all apps offering subscription services.
  • iCloud – Enable iCloud app syncing in Settings to show any apps you downloaded under your Apple ID on other devices.
  • Recently Deleted Apps – Go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage > Recently Deleted Apps to see any apps you recently removed.
  • App Updates – Check the App Store Updates tab to see all apps with pending updates, including hidden ones.

While apps can disappear for many reasons, they almost always remain installed on your iPhone. Use the strategies in this guide to uncover and restore access to hidden apps lurking out of sight. With a few taps and searches, you can excavate buried apps and regain full use of your iPhone.

How to Find Hidden Spy Apps on iPhone

Here are some tips to find hidden spy apps on an iPhone:

  • Review installed apps – Check for any apps you don’t remember downloading. Unrecognized apps could be spyware.
  • Check app permissions – Spy apps often request access to messages, camera, microphone, or location. Review app permissions in Settings.
  • Scan with antivirus software – Use a reputable antivirus app to scan for spyware or malware. Lookout and Malwarebytes are good options.
  • Monitor cellular data usage – Spy apps typically send your data to outside servers, which can show up as increased data usage.
  • Reboot your iPhone – This can stop any running spyware temporarily so you can investigate.
  • Jailbreak detection – Jailbreaking is needed to install most spyware. Some apps like SpyDetect can detect jailbreaking.
  • Factory reset – Doing a full factory reset erases any spyware but also wipes your data. Reinstall apps from scratch.
  • Change passwords – If you find spyware, change all your passwords, including iCloud, to prevent further access.
  • Contact Apple – Apple can help remove spyware if needed and secure your Apple ID.

Be very suspicious of any unfamiliar apps. Delete them immediately and scan your phone to protect your privacy if you think spyware was installed.

Can you Hide Apps on iPhone?

Yes, it is possible to hide apps on an iPhone. Here are a few ways to do it:

  • Remove from Home Screen – Tap and hold an app icon until it starts wiggling, then tap the “X” displayed on the app to remove it from your home screen. The app will still be available in the App Library.
  • Use App Library – The App Library contains all your apps in alphabetical order. You can access it by swiping left past all your home screen pages. Apps hidden from the home screen will still appear in App Library.
  • Offload Unused Apps – Go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage and tap “Offload Unused Apps” to remove infrequently used apps from your home screen while keeping their data.
  • Hide Purchased Apps – In the App Store, tap your profile icon, then tap Purchased. Swipe left on any purchased app and tap Hide to prevent it from showing on your home screen.
  • Use Screen Time – In Settings > Screen Time, you can set app limits, downtime, and restrictions to limit access to certain apps.
  • Use Parental Controls – If enabled, Parental Controls allow you to restrict usage for specific apps. You can make chosen apps invisible to kids.

Yes there are a few ways to hide apps on an iPhone for organization or restricting access – but the apps will still be installed and accessible through App Library or searching.

How to Unhide Apps on iPhone

Here are the top ways to unhide apps on an iPhone:

  1. Check the App Library – Swipe all the way to the left on your homescreen to view the App Library, which contains all your installed apps. Apps may be hidden here.
  2. Use Spotlight Search – Swipe down from the middle of the screen to access Spotlight Search. Type in the name of the missing app. If installed, it should show up in the results.
  3. Ask Siri – Say something like “Siri, open [app name]” and Siri will try to launch the app, even if hidden.
  4. View Recently Opened Apps – Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to see your recently used apps. This can help surface hidden apps you opened recently.
  5. Reboot Your iPhone – Restarting your iPhone can sometimes unhide apps stuck in a glitched state.
  6. Reinstall the App – Delete the problem app from your homescreen, then redownload it from the App Store. This may retrigger its icon to show up properly.
  7. Connect to iTunes – Syncing your iPhone to iTunes on a computer will display all installed apps and can help reinstate missing icons.
  8. Reset Home Screen Layout – Go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Home Screen Layout to revert your layout and unhide icons.
  9. Update iOS – Install the latest iOS software updates, which sometimes include fixes for app icon bugs.

With a combination of these methods, you should be able to uncover and unhide any missing iPhone apps.

How to Delete Hidden Apps on iPhone

Here are the main ways to delete hidden apps on an iPhone:

  • Open the App Library – Swipe all the way left on your home screen to access the App Library, which contains all installed apps. Long press on any hidden app icon and tap “Remove App” to delete it.
  • Search in Spotlight – Pull down from the middle of any screen to open Spotlight Search. Type in the name of the hidden app and tap to open its listing. Tap the X icon next to the app to delete it.
  • Use iTunes or Finder – Connect your iPhone to your computer and open iTunes (on Windows/Mac) or Finder (on Mac). Click on your iPhone, go to Apps, and find the hidden app you want to delete. Click the X icon next to it to uninstall it.
  • Offload in iPhone Storage – Go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage and swipe down to the Offload Unused Apps section. Toggle off any hidden apps here you want removed.
  • Reset Home Screen – Go to Settings > General > Reset and tap “Reset Home Screen Layout” to remove any problematic hidden apps.
  • Master Reset – As a last resort, you can completely reset your iPhone to factory defaults, which will uninstall all hidden and visible apps.

Double check the name of any hidden app before deleting it to avoid removing something important by accident. And remember – deleted apps can always be redownloaded from the App Store.

How to Check for Malware on iPhone

Here are some effective ways to check for malware on an iPhone:

  • Review installed apps – Check for any apps you don’t recognize or shady looking apps. Delete anything suspicious.
  • Scan with antivirus software – Download a trusted antivirus app like Malwarebytes to scan for malware and remove it.
  • Check for pop-ups – Malware may cause frequent pop-up ads. If you see odd pop-ups, that’s a red flag.
  • Monitor cellular data usage – Malware can rack up data in the background. Keep an eye on cellular data usage in Settings.
  • Reboot your iPhone – Power cycling your iPhone can stop any malware that’s running.
  • Update your iPhone – Apple releases security fixes in iOS updates. Keep your system up-to-date.
  • Restore your iPhone – For serious infections, doing a full restore erases malware. Reinstall apps from scratch.
  • Use trusted networks – Only join secure WiFi networks and avoid public networks that are easy for malware to spread on.
  • Don’t jailbreak – Jailbreaking bypasses iOS protections, increasing malware risk. Avoid it.
  • Install apps carefully – Only install apps from the official App Store. Avoid third-party app stores.

Stay vigilant and act quickly if you suspect any malware infection on your iPhone. Catching it early can prevent major headaches.

How to Check if your iPhone has been Hacked

Here are some signs your iPhone may have been hacked and steps you can take to check:

  • Review unknown apps – Check for any apps you don’t remember downloading. Delete anything suspicious.
  • Monitor cellular data usage – A spike in cellular data usage may indicate malware sending data.
  • Strange pop-ups – Frequent pop-up ads or messages could point to an infection.
  • Sluggish performance – Malware running in the background can slow your iPhone down.
  • Hot phone – Malware can cause your phone to run hotter than usual as it overworks the CPU.
  • Battery draining quickly – Faster battery drain can happen if malware is running constantly.
  • Weird sounds – Odd beeping or clicking noises from your speaker could be a sign of malware.
  • Unfamiliar accounts – Check your emails and texts for any accounts or contacts you don’t recognize.
  • Use a malware scanner – Download a trusted malware scanner app to check your phone’s files for anything suspicious.
  • Factory reset – For a full sweep, do a factory reset to wipe all files and malware off your device.

If you see multiple suspicious signs, it’s safest to assume your iPhone was compromised and take steps to secure it. Change passwords, remove unknown apps/contacts, scan with antivirus software, and reset your iPhone if needed.


Finding hidden iPhone apps gives you full access to the apps you downloaded. While Apple doesn’t make uncovering missing apps straightforward, this guide outlines several quick tips to restore your apps.

Use the App Library, Spotlight search, Siri, iTunes syncing, iOS updates, and the other methods covered above to shed light on hidden iPhone apps. You spent time and money acquiring your apps – don’t lose them in the shadows.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Finding Hidden iPhone Apps

Still have questions about locating missing iPhone apps? Here are answers to some common questions on the topic.

How do I see all apps on my iPhone?

To view all apps installed on your iPhone:

  • Go to the App Library by swiping left past your final home screen page.
  • Search for apps using the search bar at the top of the App Library.
  • Connect your iPhone to a computer and view apps in iTunes or Finder.
  • Look in your App Store purchase history on your iPhone.

These options all show you a complete list of apps associated with your Apple ID.

Why did some of my apps disappear from my iPhone home screen?

Apps commonly disappear because:

  • You hid them to declutter your home screen.
  • A software bug or crash made them become hidden.
  • Your iPhone storage was full so apps got archived.
  • Syncing issues between devices caused a conflict.

Most missing iPhone apps are still installed but just need to be unhidden using the steps in this guide.

How do I get rid of hidden iPhone apps I don’t use?

If you uncover hidden iPhone apps you no longer need:

  • Tap and hold the app icon until it jiggles.
  • Tap the X icon displayed on each unwanted app.
  • Confirm when prompted to delete the app(s).

Deleting removes unwanted apps and frees up storage space on your iPhone.

Can deleting an iPhone app make it disappear forever?

No, deleting an iPhone app from your home screen only removes the icon. The app remains in your App Store purchase history and can be easily redownloaded.

To permanently remove an app, you must contact Apple Support and request they remotely and permanently remove the app from your account. But this is rarely necessary.

How do I restore my home screen after finding hidden apps?

After uncovering hidden apps, put them back on your home screen via:

  • Tap and hold on an app icon then select Add to Home Screen.
  • Open the app from Spotlight or App Library, then tap the Share icon and choose Add to Home Screen.
  • Connect your iPhone to iTunes or Finder and sync the app(s) back onto your home screen(s).
  • Reset your home screen layout in Settings to reveal any missing icons again.

Once you find your hidden gems, put them back on your home screen for quick and easy access.