Having a great piece of hardware running great software isn’t the only thing that matters when it comes to your user experience of using a smartphone. There’s no denying that iOS is a fantastic platform, but the thing I think that’s great about it is the sheer number of apps available. There are tons, and there’s a lot of competition as developers come up with different solutions to each other, each vying for a place on your Home Screen. How you arrange your apps, Folders and Home Screens is what flavors your experience of using an iPhone.
With that all in mind, I thought I’d share with you how I’ve organized mine, and it’s predominantly taking three key factors in to consideration: Frequency of use, app icon color and hatred of clutter. Keeping all three in balance is almost impossible, but I’ve done the best I can with what I have. For instance: Instagram is one of my most used apps, but, it doesn’t look anything like any of other app icons, so I’ve place it in a row of apps with white backgrounds and yellow/green/red colors on the logo. On my first home screen I have two rows of blue apps (impossible to avoid blue – believe me, I’ve tried). The bottom row on my first home screen is all red: YouTube, AnyCal, Flipboard and Audience. AnyCal’s placement is key here, because it wouldn’t have always been my first choice calendar app. I prefer the user interface of Fantastical, but its icon is mostly white, and there are no other red apps I use frequently enough to earn a place on my first home screen. So, I gave AnyCal a whirl and it’s a great looking app, and passes my aesthetic test.
On my second home screen I have a yellow row, a black row, another blue row and a white row. On the second screen are 16 apps that I use frequently, but perhaps only once or twice per day. Mobile banking, Flickr, Digg Reader and Google Hangouts are place on the bottom row, holding up a selection of apps that I use regularly. There were a couple of replacements here needed to fit in with my color organization. Firstly, Reminders in iOS 7 is hideous, so I swapped it out for Any.DO to fit in with the other blue apps. On the second row I have Glo Bible. I used to use Tecarta’s Bible reading program, and do actually prefer it, but, it was blue and I needed an app on the row of black icons that was worth a space. Compass – sadly – rarely gets featured and I never use the Apple Stocks app.
Then on my third screen are all the apps that I like, but don’t make the cut. Since I hate clutter, I won’t go over three screens and I won’t have more than four rows of apps on a screen. So, my folders are there to stop my iPhone having too many screens that need swiping through. And – as best as possible – I’ve organized the apps in the folders by color. It’s not easy, and in some cases impossible, but it’s not that important to me here, since they’re all hidden away.
What I really wanted to know was: Am I insane? And, how do you organize your home screen? Do you use color co-ordination, or just place your apps in alphabetical order? Let me know in the comments, or tweet me your screenshots to: @TiP_Cam