How to add and remove Widgets from your Android home screen

This brief tutorial will show you how to add and/or remove Widgets to/from your Android home screen.

    Due to the large number of Android phones and tablets, the screenshots used in this tutorial will probably not match your device exactly. With that said, they’re similar enough that you shouldn’t have any trouble following along.

  1. On your Android home screen, tap any blank or “empty” area and hold down your finger.
  2. An Add to Home screen window will pop up. From that window, tap Widgets.
  3. You’ll be presented with a list of all the installed Widgets on your Android device. Select the one you want to add to your home screen by tapping it. In this example, I’ll be adding the Calendar widget.
  4. Now the widget will appear on your home screen. Tap the widget and hold down your finger again – this time you can “drag” it to the location on the screen you want it to reside.
  5. Should you decide you want to remove the widget from your home screen, tap it and hold your finger down. You’ll notice that the “slider” that normally brings up all of your installed programs turns into a “Trash can”.
  6. Drag the widget to that trash can. Both the widget and the trash can will turn red. At this point, let go of the widget (release your finger). That will “drop” it in the trash. Note: this does not actually uninstall the widget. It just removes it from your home screen. Should you ever decide to add it again, it will be there waiting for you.
  7. If you’re using a newer version of the Android OS, the “Trash can” might be located on a different place on your Home screen. In the screenshot below, you’ll see what it looks like using Android OS 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) on a tablet.
  8. That’s it – the widget has been removed from your home screen.

275 thoughts on “How to add and remove Widgets from your Android home screen”

  1. THANKYOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! I had accidently opened up 3 coorpret calenders one on each screen and I didn’t even have an account! You saved my droid experience

  2. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! I was driving myself crazy tryn to figure it out on my own. This just saved me time on hold!

  3. No HTC Magic, usei esta ajuda e fiquei impressionado com a simplicidade!…
    Obrigado, e parabéns pela clareza do tutorial.

  4. This didn’t work for me? The tab never changes to a trash can. The whole screen just shifts around when I try to drag a widget.

    Stupid thing self-installed 3 ‘browser’ widgets on my home screen, I guess bc I use that app a lot. But I don’t need 3 !!!

  5. OK I figured it out… it’s a LOOOOOOONG press on the widget to make the tab turn into a trash can. Much longer than I expected.


  6. Android_shandroid

    I could not see the trash can till I held down the offending widget. Trash can magically appears when needed – Awesome !!

  7. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. Now my wildfire screen looks much better. I have accidently added some widgets & dont know how to remove. Thanks again.

  8. Mary, I had the same trouble at first, as well. I have to hold it over the trash can for a few seconds, and then let go. that worked!

  9. Oh my gosh thank u ……most helpful for a previous blackberry user. I must say the change has been good ….thanks again

  10. I can see the trashcan, but am unable to drag it to it successfully. Usually, another icon gets selected when I drag, or the app bar pops up. I am unable to drag the facebook widget to the trashcan. Argh!

  11. Thank you! This is the ONLY place I have been able to find what I thought would be a very simple answer. They tell you how to put them on, but no where do they tell you how to get rid of them!

    1. john – sadly, you can’t. There might be an app that adds this feature actually.. Search the market for ‘home screen’ (there will almost certainly be a lot of results) and see if one fits your needs…

  12. This was extremely helpful to know. One thing, though. How do you remove a widget if the screen is full? There’s no space to touch and hold down…. what should be done?

  13. i tried this 3 to 4 times to remove the picture frame widget off of my home screen & it doesn’t work. I thought it would put a picture frame around the outside of the screen instead of putting another picture over the top of the picture I have on my home screen.

  14. I’m afraid that doesn’t work for me.

    It does work for little icons but I have some thumping great grey rectangle, seems to be some timer thing, complete with world clock, countdown timer etc, blocking the usual clock.

    Any idea how to remove that?


    (2.2 froyo)

  15. I mentioned earlier that I had a large gray thing on the home screen. Turned out that somehow it had the main clock widet running twice!

    Hence it was just a gray blob.

    The only way I was able to remove it was to hit the menu button while looking at apps, to get the uninstall apps function, then force close both running clocks. At that point it went back to normal.

    I have decided however that this will be my last Android phone – as I have just discovered that it is impossible to buy apps from the Android Market if you live in Malaysia!

    Add to that the fact the operating system is clunky as all heck and I really can’t be bothered with Android anymore. For example I needed to send someone an SMS with a small map attachment. I was able to download it but where on my phone did it go? I dunno, I still haven’t found it!

    If fact it’s like that all the time with Android, because there is no sane means of finding anything. You actually have to download a 3rd party app (pick one you like…) as a “file manager”, in order to even view files, let alone organize or find anything.

    I mean, what kind of operating system is that? I cannot believe the iPhone could be any more restrictive or obscure. I was determined to try and avoid Microsoft but I think my next phone will be Windows again.

  16. Thank you very much. I thought I was computer savvy until I ran into that on my daughters e-reader. BTW I program GIS systems and I still couldn’t figure that out from the documentation that came with the unit. Documentation is definately lacking.

  17. my widget is directly beside trashcmy widgets is at the bottom of screem beside trashcan, trashcan not cominan its not coming up,so widget can be removed

  18. I can drag the widget, but the trashcan nor the widget are turning red and I can’t remove the widget. Its starting to get really frusterating.

  19. These instructions are great. But note that for newer OSes (ice cream sandwich 4.0) the trash can will appear at the top of the screen.

  20. so, i know how to put and remove a widget on the home screen. what i can’t figure out is how to remove a widget that is in one of the 4 corners. i’ve tried everything i can think of.
    i have 4 widgets/apps in the top right corner. i don’t want them there but the method to remove the widgets/apps from the main part of the screen doesn’t work. any ideas? if it makes any difference, i have a sony experia active, adroid v 2.3.4.

  21. I figured it out. tap the top right corner, it will open, then hold down the widget as you would on the main screen area.

  22. Thanks so much. I am VERY new to android and NOT very savvy with things like this. I need it all explained like I was a two year old. This helped me sooooo much! Thank you!

  23. Have a HTC android phone and want to remove widgets permently from the all widget screen so they are no longer there?

  24. Patricia Huffman

    Thank you so much! I was halfway there, trying to remove widgets by tapping and holding, but my finger covered the trash can and I didn’t know it was there.

  25. The process as described did not work on my Galaxy S3. I have four clocks on one home page that I can’t get rid of.

  26. crucialminutia

    No go on my Archos 80 g9 (Android 4.1 with Mini Opera Browser)- i only see wallpaper choices when i touch and hold empty spaces on my Home Page.

    i did find a list of widgets under Settings however, and all listed widgets do appear on my Home Page when i touch and hold them, but the specific widget for Bluetooth Switch doesn’t function (only installation instructions pop up when the Bluetooth Switch widget on the Home Page is selected).

  27. press and hold on the widget then top of the home screen “x Remove” will appear u just move ur widget to “x Remove” to remove..easy..

  28. I cannot delete widgets from Samsung Admire. When I touch the widget it brings up the option to add apps,widgets and so on. All 7 screens have the widgets that I cannot delete.The icons do not open to be used.

  29. denise seremeta

    I can’t delete a huge widget from my home screen on my Samsung Note, 2014 either!!! It’s driving me crazy!!!, I long press & can move it to the top of the page but, when I move it over the trash can, even though it turns red it WILL NOT let me delete it, uughh! If anyone has a resolution for this please let me , now, thanks!

  30. Aahhhh, finally figured it out!!! When you press down the widget & go to slide it to the top of the homepage screen, you have to do it very quickly; like a very fast sweeping motion. Then it finally goes into the trash can. That’s how it worked on my tablet anyway (Samsung Note, 2014) hope this is of some help. I still do have a non – working widget that I cannot trash, delete or remove!! If anyone has any answers for that, I’d be greatful.

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  33. Still has not fixed issue. The home screen has a small window owards the bottom. A half moon is on the left. A date and time in the middle, which is long passed (2017) and a + sign on the left. It’s a small rectangle. Just above the bottom of screen.

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