Kim from Los Angeles is experiencing some confusion with her new phone.  She writes: “After 4 years with an iphone 3GS, I switched to the Motorola Moto-X Android phone. I must say the Android learning curve is much longer than I expected (although I never felt I ever mastered the iphone IOS).
Nevertheless, I used your Android How-To Compilation as the primary introduction to setting up the Moto-X. What I’m not clear about is the difference between the Home Screen and the App Drawer. Are the icons on the Home Screen equivalent to shortcut icons on a PC? i.e. Does the actual App reside in the App Drawer, and then the icon that appears on the Home Screen a shortcut to the actual App? And therefore, the icons on the Home Screen can be deleted without deleting the App?”

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Hi, Kim.  Thanks for the great question!

First off, congratulations on your Moto X.  I have one myself, and not only is it a great phone, it’s also (as far as I know, but don’t quote me on that) the only cell phone that’s assembled in the US.  Motorola has always made great phones anyway.  I have an old Razor flip-phone somewhere that, as far as I know, still works.

Here is a side by side image of the Moto X home screen and the app tray (or drawer):

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The short answer to your question is “Yes, the apps on the home screen are similar to the shortcuts on your computer’s desktop, and they can be trashed without deleting the actual app.”

When you place an app on your home screen, what you’re really doing is creating an easily-accessible shortcut to that app so that you don’t have to open the app tray every time that you want to use it.

On a side note, this image also shows something cool that you can do with your mobile phone that not a lot of people utilize, which is the making of folders.  When you create a folder, you can store any number of app shortcuts in it for easy access.  To create a folder in Android or Apple, tap and hold one app and move it on top of another one before dropping it.  This will create the folder.  By tapping the name of the folder, you can then rename it anything that you’d like.

I hope that this helps!

~ Randal Schaffer