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iTunes 9.0.2 Offers 180+ iPhone App Management

iphonesync20090916

Looks like Apple snuck a little something extra into iTunes 9.0.2 for iPhone and iPod touch users -- 180+ app management.

Instead of just mirroring the 11 visible iPhone 3.x Home Screens (with their maximum 180 app slots), iTunes will now let you add even more apps. These additional apps are displayed on grayed-out Home Screens (because they're not visible on the iPhone -- you have to use Spotlight Search to launch them), but in iTunes are otherwise easy to organize and remove.

Footnote: 
[via TUAW]

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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There are 25 comments. Add yours.

DoubleDown ¡ says:

Is this iTunes update Blackra1n jailbroken iPhone safe ?
Meaning can I do the update without losing the jailbreak or if I do lose it can I do it again without waiting for a Blackra1n update.
If it's not safe, I'll just wait. I can organize my own apps on my iPhone.

Rene Ritchie says:

It's not an update, it's a feature we didn't notice from the last update. Haven't heard any blackra1n problems with it, especially latter versions of blackra1n that came out very recently (after iTunes 9.0.2).

Charles says:

When will we move beyond the default 11 screens is my question.

DustinAe says:

Who the hell has that many apps anyway? am i just an underachiever?

SilentSoul says:

This isn't real app management. I wantto be able to put tools/games in folders like you can when you JB. That would clean up my home screen soooo much. Come on Apple!

SilentSoul says:

....and further more, if we could create folders on the iPhone and drop apps into them we wouldn't need so many home pages! Also if we could "poof" redundent apps like the native weather app when we only use weather channel's app we would also save space and be more productive. I hate redundent apps. There are enough of those in the AppStore I don't need them on my iPhone too. These are pretty basic software changes that could save people from having so many reasons to JB.

Tony says:

Too bad I jailbroke my ipod and downloaded five column dock. Sigh.

GottiMafia says:

Could this mean a possible "categories" type app for non-jb iPhones??? Eh probably not lol

fastlane says:

I wonder if this is an indication that Apple is going to stick with the multiple-homescreen icon UI next summer, rather than moving toward a menu-style that some here are hoping for. I mean, if the next gen's home screen was really going to go in a different direction, would they have even bothered adding this?

JimEJr says:

It's a huge help, but still maxes out at 25 home screens... so 400 apps total including the Apple built-in apps. I currently have 413 non-Apple apps, so this is very much welcome. I maxed at 522, but found after testing a number of times that Spotlight will randomly crash when used if you have more than 472 non-Apple apps installed. (Oh and yes, I actually do use almost every app at least once a month, prob nearly 100 of them weekly. I do a lot of photo editing on the device.)
What's kinda funny and looks odd about the new feature in iTunes, is that it attempts to put all the tiny home screen dot indicators at the bottom of the display still... looks like atypical clutter for Apple.
A handful of other improvements for app catalogues of a large size would be:
1) A filter option for viewing Installed apps on left side rather than having to see every app.
2) A home screen "page" number next to each app on the left side (indicating which home screen it is on) & be able to sort by that number.
3) Increase the home screens on the right from 25 to 30 as that would cover 472 custom apps plus the 20 or so Apple installs.
4) Finally, allow removal of Apple installed apps... for instance, I don't use Contacts as it's easy enough to get to via the Phone app.

Apps says:

The dude with 522 apps. You need a life.

Loui says:

@ Apps dude
why would someone need a life just cuz they have a bunch of apps o_O that makes no sense?
what is with the internet and their "You need a life" comments its getting so old so fast, you dont even know the person and you just assume they have no life... geez

schrute farms says:

@ Loui
No one likes a cry baby. Get a life.

icebike says:

@Fastlane: #9

I wonder if this is an indication that Apple is going to stick with the multiple-homescreen icon UI next summer,

I was wondering the exact opposite.
Since Spotlight works for people with more apps than fit on 11 screens, (and has worked even before this release of iTunes), this seems like a cheap thing to add.
Users were already doing this, it was posted here on TiPb months ago.
If they were going to do a UI make-over they might have been looking for a a temporary solution to accommodate what the phone can already do, rather than rolling the make-over out piecemeal.
At least that's what the wishful thinking side of me hopes.

JimEJr says:

@Loui thx... but I considered @Apps comment a sarcastic remark vs. a criticism. Even if a criticism, Apps is prob right. But, hey... I love the iPhone, the platform and the apps.
Part of the reason I have so many is that I'm in marketing, so I pretty much download every brand-oriented app, like Nationwide, Pizza Hut, WalMart, Men's Health... whether I use the brand or not. A lot of brand apps suck... so I'm looking for who gets it right (like North Face and USAA) and who does not (like WalMart and Longhorn Steakhouse).
I also have so many to uphold a reputation... many friends and family ask me for app suggestions... so I have to try as many as I can to keep informed. I actually have tried 590 so far, but again, only have 413 on board right now to get back below 472 (I removed like 80 something apps over the weekend).
As @icebike points out, Spotlight is the better method for launching than the home screens with this many apps. I pretty much toggle between the two first home screens and otherwise use Spotlight.
I agree with many others that other options are needed now for app organization be it folders, categories, tags... whatever. I also would like to see Voice Control support for launching apps; admittedly, that will only get so far, but I'm assuming at that point Voice Control API's would be enhanced so partial control of apps using voice and reading of content, by the device, to the user would be possible.

Andrew Lih says:

NO JB REQUIRED! I get 16 pages by using this tactic!
If u wanna make iPhone show more than 11 pages, just drag an app from the first page (must be a default app. eg. voice memos, weather…etc) to the last page. Then drag another app from either page 2~9 and the default app you drag will be place into the next page which you can’t see. At last, drag an app from second page and fill up the empty space of the default app. Before restarting your iPhone, check! your first page has to be full, also the last page. After all the double check, restart your iPhone or iPod Touch. You’ll get an extra page! Enjoy!
P.S. Remember not to use iTunes to mange your app’s position, or you will get back to 11 pages!
You guys had posted this: http://www.theiphoneblog.com/2009/08/11/iphone-ninjary-11-home-screens-i...

Fringgo says:

My that many apps te phone would hardley work. There's a reason for only 11 pages. For some reason when you have a lot of apps the phone runs slower.

Ivan Williams says:

Ever since this update, my iTunes keeps giving weird errors, and then I have to restart my pc (Vista). Something to do with the Apple helper service...

scottb says:

This just proves we need a new metaphor on the iPhone.
it was great when there were a few hundred apps, now with 100,000 and people wanting lots of them, we need folders.
Simply the time to do it.
I hope the next update allows for this.
Pages of apps is starting to suck eggs.

Randal L. Schwartz says:

"You need a life."
"There's an app for that!"

fastlane says:

@icebike:
Yeah, I can see that too.
Just seems strange to do it in late 2009.. We'll see.

TroyRific says:

I totally misread this post. I was thinking I could force a 12 home page and put my infrequently used apps there. Turns out all that does is putting those apps back on the visible home screens first come first serve in the first available spot. Wish it had worked the way I thought it was going to.

zeke says:

There is a Swedish applet: 'Aftonbladet' which has a map structure.
So it is possible?

Vernita Bogdon says:

Very good written post. It will be supportive to anybody who usess it, including yours truly :). Keep up the good work - i will definitely read more posts.