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How to Group Notifications by App (Or Sort Manually)

Your iPhone’s Notification Center is quite customizeable. If all those notifications are overwhelming and hard to read, take control and make the system adapt to you, rather than then other way around. You should be able to prioritize and quickly skim this section of iOS. Thus it is sensible to set it up the right way, a way that works for you. Here’s how to group notifications by app and most recent usage, or sort your Notification Center items manually and prioritize by hand.

Prerequisites: You will require iOS 9.0 and above to follow along in this guide.

How to group notifications by app (or ungroup)

The new toggle labeled “Group By App” is found in the “Settings” app under “Notifications”. With it enabled, your notifications are listed in neat blocks that can be ticked off at once. Within the block, recent notifications will be listed at the top. The same goes for sorting on the next level of the hierarchy.

The app with the most recent notifications will always be found at the top of the list, as long as your “Sort Order” is set to “Recent”. Most people prefer this setting as it allows them to deal with the urgent messages first.

You can disable this behavior by turning off the “Group by App” toggle. This will keep notifications intermixed in a single list, sorted by their recency. Another great way to visualize what happened in the last couple of hours and days!

Manual sorting of notifications & apps in the Notification Center

Yet another option to customize the Notification Center is to change the “Sort Order” setting. You can actually go in and select the “Manual” order.

This entails dragging and dropping the handles next to all of your apps in an appropriate position within the list. The further up you pull an app in this list, the higher its priority in the actual Notification Center. This is great for prioritizing, say, your favorite messengers and most important apps.