A widget stack on an iPhone Home screen.
Khamosh Pathak

iOS 14 brought new types of widgets to the iPhone Home screen, including something called “Smart Stack.” This feature allows you to cycle through the widgets chosen by the system, but that’s not all—you can also create and customize your own widget stack.

How to Create a Widget Stack

While the Smart Stack widget is pretty intelligent about showing you different kinds of widgets at various times during the day, you can control the process more if you create a widget stack.

The terms “Smart Stack” and “widget stack” are interchangeable. Just like Smart Stacks, widget stacks also have the Auto Rotate feature enabled by default. You can add more widgets to a Smart Stack, as well.

To get started, tap and hold an empty area on the Home screen to open the Editing mode. Here, tap the plus sign (+) at the top left.

Tap the plus sign (+).

This opens the widget picker. You can choose a widget from the suggestions or tap an app to see all of the available widgets.

Tap an app in widgets list.

Choose a widget size (“Small,” “Medium,” or “Large”), and then tap “Add Widget.”

Tap "Add Widget."

Now that your first widget is on the screen, it’s time to add another one. You can only stack widgets that are the same size.

Once again, tap the plus sign (+) at the top left to return to the widget picker. This time, when you find a widget you like, tap and hold its preview to pick it up.

Tap and hold a widget's preview to select it from the widget picker.

The widget picker will disappear. Drag the new widget on top of the one you added previously. When you see an outline around the first widget, lift your finger to drop the new one.

Drag and drop the widget you want to add on top of another one.

You’ve now created a widget stack! Repeat the process to add more widgets.; you can add up to 10 to the same Stack.

A "Podcasts" widget stack.

The real beauty of the way widgets work in iOS 14 is that you can have multiple widgets from the same app stacked on top of one another. This means you can create multiple widgets for your “Reminders” lists or shortcuts, and then just swipe between them.

RELATED: How iPhone Home Screen Widgets Work in iOS 14

How to Customize Widget Stacks

Once you’ve created a widget stack, you can customize it. You can do this for a Smart Stack, as well.

Just tap and hold a widget stack to reveal the options, and then tap “Edit Stack.”

 Tap "Edit Stack."

If you’re in the Home screen Edit mode, just tap a widget stack to see its customization options.

A new panel will slide up from the bottom. Here, toggle-Off the “Smart Rotate” option.

Toggle-Off "Smart Rotate."

Now, your widget stack won’t move to show different widgets based on your usage or the time of day.

Below, you’ll see a list of all the widgets in the stack. If you want to delete one, just swipe left on its title, and then tap “Delete.”

Tap "Delete."

You can also rearrange the widgets in the list by tapping the three horizontal lines on the right.

Tap the three horizontal lines to rearrange widgets.

Tap “X” at the top right or swipe down to close and return to the Home screen.

Tap "X" to close the widget editing screen.

How to Remove a Widget Stack

You can delete a widget with just a couple of taps. First, tap and hold a widget stack to open the options. To delete the whole stack, just tap “Remove Stack.”

Tap "Remove Stack."

If you’re in the Home screen Edit mode, tap the minus sign (-) at the top left of the widget stack.

Tap the minus sign (-) to remove a widget stack.

Tap “Remove” to confirm.

Tap "Remove."


Now that you’ve mastered widgets on your iPhone, be sure to check out how the new App Library works, as well!

RELATED: How the New App Library Works on iPhone

Khamosh Pathak Khamosh Pathak
Khamosh Pathak is a freelance technology writer who specializes in tutorials. His work has also been published on iPhoneHacks, Zapier's blog, MakeUseOf, and Guiding Tech. Khamosh has seven years of experience writing how-tos, features and technology guides on the internet.
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