Apple has gone to town with iOS 14 and introduced a number of new features – such as home screen widgets and an app library – that will almost certainly improve the way we use our iPhones. This includes app clips, an interesting add-on that lets you use smaller, streamlined versions of apps without having to download them completely.
App clips are designed to overcome any reluctance a user may have to try new apps. Most of us have had an iPhone for some time now, so we’ve collected more than our fair share of apps and may not want to clog our devices with more. App Clips, however, solves this problem by allowing you to add a more streamlined version of an app, while hiding it in the App Library, where it does not take up valuable home screen properties. In this article, we explain how to use and get the most out of app clips, from downloading clips for specific apps to removing them from your iPhone.
How do you use App Clips for iOS 14?
Remember that app clips are not available from the App Store. Even with an app that has a clip available, it can only download it completely in the App Store page.
Instead, you can access app clips through a variety of sources. Either click on a link found on a Safari web page, in a message or on Maps, or scan a QR code with your iPhone’s camera. You can also download app clips using near-field communication (NFC), even if it’s only available for iPhone 7 and later.
Given that app clips can be downloaded from different sources, there is no single database, page or archive that contains all the possible clips you can find. You need to find them yourself with the help of web and social media searches. More often than not, you will probably stumble across them.
If there is a new app that you are interested in, it is usually a good way to find out if there is a clip available to go to the Safari website. If there is an app clip, you will probably see a download link in a banner at the top of its website.
Clicking on this link will display a sub-window at the bottom of the screen. Tap Open or Play to download the clip for the app. The app clip starts shortly after.
Use iOS 14’s app clips
When you use an app clip, you sometimes see one of two banners appear, either at the top or bottom of the screen. These banners notify you that the app clip is “powered by” the entire app, while they also contain a link to the entire app in the App Store.
You can choose to ignore these by swiping up or down on the corresponding banner to remove it. But while you can continue to use an app clip indefinitely, remember that it has significantly reduced functionality compared to the entire app.
App clips are downloaded to (and found in) your app library. You will not be able to move them to your home screen.
How to delete app clips from your iPhone
You can also not delete app clips from your app library by going to the library and holding down the clip icon (which you can with regular apps). Instead, you have to go to Settings> App clips to delete clips from your iPhone. From there you can press Delete all app clips to delete all app clips. You can also tap an individual clip that takes you to a new screen where you can delete it (Remove the App Clip) or go to its page in the App Store.
If you delete an app clip from your iPhone, you will of course have to find the download link again if you want to put it back on your device.