Sequence of last used iOS apps

Hi there,

there is a behavior of my IPhone and my IPad as well, which drives me crazy. And I was wondering, if I don’t get it, how it works or if anybody else is annoyed.
On my IPhone Xs I often change between the last used apps. Just a swipe to the right on the bar on the bottom of the display. So for example I switch from Safari to Mail to Notes. But when I want to go back to Safari, sometimes I have to swipe back to the left two times, sometimes ( I guess it is time dependent ) I have to swipe two times to the right.
If I swipe up, I see in the second case, that the current app is now in the front.
So I never know what I have to do.
What do you do? Or is there a way to change this? I‘m curious.
Yours Mike

This is one of the odder quirks of the UI. The behaviour that you’re seeing is what Apple intended but I think it’s kind of weird. I’m also not sure how they might fix it, given that they’re essentially mixing two methods of app switching, one of which makes the most sense if the apps remain in a fixed order and the other of which benefits from having them in recently-used order.

You’re right that it’s time dependant as to when they reorder themselves in the swipe interface, but there is no cue that it has happened which leads to confusion. I suspect that a better way to do it would be to retain the (left/right) swipe order until the app-switcher view is invoked.


The apps re-order when you interact with one of them. The most recent app being furthest to the “right” in the mental map.

I find it’s best to use this as a quick means of flipping between two apps when doing something like copying and pasting from one to the other.

If you try to use it/think of it like a command-tab app switcher, you’ll just drive yourself crazy.

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