I was thinking recently on how with the current advances in Android and WP7 phones that Apple would need to really mix things up a bit with the release of the inevitable iPhone 5. I slowly drifted off into what I thought would be an amazing addition to the iPhone’s Springboard. I set to work creating some images in Photoshop and even sat down to start documenting my thoughts.
Halfway through something occurred to me: I haven’t seen Ice Cream Sandwich yet, or the features involved with the update. A quick (literally 5 – 6 seconds) search on Google showed me that the first response to “resizable widgets Android” came back with a YouTube video showing users how to do just that. So instead of going into a blow by blow description of what I had thought of, I’ll simply place my images here and tell you (and Apple) to check out the awesome feature of Ice Cream Sandwich.
The idea isn’t 100% the same so I will note a few things that go with the images I’ve created, simply because I’ve put the time and thoughts in, I might as well get them onto the blog in some form. Firstly, the idea would be that you would tap and hold an icon in the same way that you would to move/delete an app. Once they start shaking it’s just a matter of doing a reverse pinch over the icon to get the size/shape you’re after. Individual apps would need to be programmed in a way that different things show depending on what size you’ve made them. In the example to the right, stretching the icon to a 2×4 widget would allow you to see the weekly weather schedule. You’d still be able to tap the widget to enter the app itself or resize it to a full 4×4 widget that run the complete app inside it.
Obviously it’d depend on the app in use, but as you can see by the second image you’d be able to give yourself a dynamic look on any page on the Springboard by mixing and matching normal tappable icons with the adjusted icons/widgets. This would allow the user to decide on how much micro-info they were receiving through any of their social media or apps that supported the expanded icon feature.
Lastly, to end the clutter, of folders and icons that litter most iPhone users game section of the Springboard, would be the Games icon. An icon that could be expanded to show either the last played games or tapped to bring up a scrollable alphabetical list of games installed on the device. Of course it could also simply be expanded to a 4×4 icon that has the scrolling capability which means any page on the device could hold all downloaded games in a tidy and ordered manner.
While these are all thoughts that are either in place already on other devices in some form or another, it’s definitely something Apple needs to look at to compete with the superior designs found elsewhere. If they feel the need to make their phones “sexier” than they should be thinking the same about the OS. Make it happen Apple.