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15 Creative iPhone Home Screen Layouts to Organize Your Apps

It's fun to give yourself a cool iPhone Home Screen layout. Grouping apps into various folders on different pages is a good way to keep your collection organized, but there are more creative ways to organize your iPhone Home Screen layout as well.

Here are the best layout ideas if you want to do something different with your iPhone's Home Screen.

Customizing Your iPhone Home Screen

There are countless ways to customize your iPhone's Home Screen by utilizing widgets and the App Library in iOS. However, in this guide, we’re only focusing on different app layout ideas. These offer creative methods to organize your apps.

Many of the layouts below call for customized app icons. To create these, you need to use the Shortcuts app to create a shortcut that opens an app. You can then add that shortcut to your Home Screen with a custom icon.

You may also need to remove apps from your Home Screen for some of the layouts below. To do this, tap and hold an app to open a popup menu, choose Remove App, then choose Remove from Home Screen. This sends the app to your iPhone App Library instead.

1. The Minimalist

For this Home Screen layout, remove every app from your Home Screen and send them to the App Library. You can then choose to add a single app or folder to the Dock. Or if you prefer, keep your Home Screen completely empty and enjoy a clear view of your wallpaper.

Related: The Best Places to Find Your Next iPhone Wallpaper

When you want to open an app, swipe down on the Home Screen to open Spotlight and type the first letter or two of the app you're after. Your iPhone should find it almost immediately; just tap it in the search results to open it. You can always go rooting through the App Library as well.

2. Monochrome

Use the Shortcuts app to create black, white, or gray icons for your favorite apps. Some system apps like Settings and Camera already use grayscale icons, so you don't need to worry about those.

After creating your monochromatic app shortcuts, move all the original apps to the App Library.

3. Color-Coded

Another color-based alternative is to replace your apps with color-coded Shortcuts. Why not make social apps green, games red, and entertainment apps blue? A color-coded iPhone Home Screen layout makes it easy to focus only on the apps you need at a particular time.

This could also be useful for anyone with color blindness, as you can choose colors for different app groups that you find easy to distinguish.

Image Gallery (3 Images)

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This iPhone Home Screen layout is a great idea for anybody who likes to have many options without a lot of clutter.

Instead of grouping apps into folders, create shortcuts with list menus that let you choose between multiple apps to open. You can give each shortcut a name, icon, and color that represents the group of apps it contains.

Use the Choose from Menu action in the Shortcuts to create a list of apps to choose from. For example, create a shortcut called Read that offers a menu of reading apps: Kindle, Books, News, and so on.

5. The Monogram

Thought you were stuck with the grid layout on your iPhone Home Screen? Think again! You can utilize iEmpty to create blank icons that match your wallpaper, then use those icons to create spaces in your Home Screen layout.

This opens up a world of possibilities, including the option of spelling your initials with the app icons.

6. Dockless

The Dock loses its importance if you keep all your apps on a single screen instead of having them spread across multiple pages. So use a clever trick to hide your iPhone Dock instead.

This involves changing your wallpaper to one that conceals the dock. Fortunately, there are plenty of wallpaper options to choose from.

7. The One-Hander

Big screens are awesome, but reaching for icons at the furthest edges of the display can literally be a pain. Instead of practicing fingertip yoga every time you want to open an app, why not keep your icons all down one side?

Use iEmpty to create blank spaces in your iPhone Home Screen layout, allowing you to move the remaining apps on whichever side you want them.

8. The Bottom Line

Apple knows the bottom of the screen is prime real estate, since it's the easiest part to reach. That's why the Dock is down there.

Thus, it makes sense to ignore the top of the iPhone Home Screen completely and use blank icons to shift your app icons towards the bottom.

9. The Noticeboard

This iPhone Home Screen layout is a best for people who feel anxious about seeing too many notifications at once. Just group apps that use notification badges into urgent and non-urgent folders so you can see at a glance how many apps really need your attention.

Not all notifications are equally important, after all.

10. Work/Play

With this layout, keep work-related apps on one page. Entertainment apps that you only use outside of working hours go on another.

Combine this with the Downtime feature in Screen Time to automatically disable apps on the work screen at the end of the workday. For even better productivity, use Downtime to disable everything on the play screen during working hours as well.

11. Incognito

Got a secret app you don't want anyone to know about? Use Shortcuts or iEmpty to create an invisible icon for it, then name it with an invisible Unicode character from Empty Characters.

If you keep at least one empty row per Home Screen, nobody will ever know you've got a top-secret app stashed there.

12. The Librarian

Can't decide how to organize your iPhone apps? Unable to choose between sorting icons by style or classifying them by color? Take the librarian's option and arrange your apps in alphabetical order instead.

Never again will you agonize over where to put that new utility or game. Simply slot it into place according to its name.

13. The Heavy Load

If you have a lot of apps, pack them into several folders so you don't need to swipe through endless Home Screens to view everything. It's best to organize your folders by app category: work, health, finance, entertainment, and so on.

The App Library does this automatically, but you have no control over how each app is categorized. This is a much better option if you want to know exactly where to find each app.

If you're struggling to think of good folder name ideas for this Home Screen layout, you could also use emojis to give quick, colorful representations for each one.

14. The Rainbow

Most app icons feature a single color that stands out above all others. Thanks to this, you can create a stunning iPhone Home Screen layout by arranging your apps according to their primary color to form a rainbow.

As an added bonus, this makes a lot of apps easier to find, since it's easier to picture the app icon than remember where it sits in your layout.

For app icons that combine multiple colors, move them to a separate screen at the end of the rainbow.

15. Two-Page Priorities

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It's best to keep your most important apps within reach at all times. The easiest way to do this is to add your favorite four apps to the Dock, then prioritize the next-most important apps on your first Home Screen.

After that, add everything else into separate folders on the second Home Screen page. Alternatively, only use a single Home Screen and relegate everything else to the App Library.

Despite the restrictions that Apple puts on the iPhone Home Screen, with a little out-of-the-box thinking and some simple tricks, you can come up with all sorts of creative app layouts.

And for more iPhone customization, don’t forget to add some widgets to your Home Screen.

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The 9 Best iPhone Widgets (And How to Put Them to Good Use)

iPhone widgets let you see all kinds of app information at a glance. Here are some of the best iPhone widgets you should be using.

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About The Author
Dan Helyer (172 Articles Published)

Dan writes tutorials and troubleshooting guides to help people make the most of their technology. Before becoming a writer, he earned a BSc in Sound Technology, supervised repairs at an Apple Store, and even taught English in China.

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Sours: https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/layouts-iphone-home-screen/

Adaptivity and Layout

People generally want to be able to use their favorite apps on all of their devices and in any context. To meet this expectation, design an adaptable interface by configuring UI elements and layouts to automatically change shape and size on different devices, during multitasking on iPad, in split view, when the screen rotates, and more.

Device Screen Sizes and Orientations

iOS devices have a variety of screen sizes and people can use them in either portrait or landscape orientation. In edge-to-edge devices like iPhone X and iPad Pro, the display has rounded corners that closely match the device’s overall dimensions. Other devices — such as iPhone SE and iPad Air — have a rectangular display.

If your app runs on a specific device, make sure it runs on every screen size for that device. In other words, an iPhone-only app must run on every iPhone screen size and an iPad-only app must run on every iPad screen size.

Diagram of iPad and two models of iPhone, each in portrait and landscape orientation.

DeviceDimensions (portrait)
12.9" iPad Pro1024x1366 pt (2048x2732 px @2x)
11" iPad Pro834x1194 pt (1668x2388 px @2x)
10.5" iPad Pro834x1194 pt (1668x2388 px @2x)
9.7" iPad Pro768x1024 pt (1536x2048 px @2x)
7.9" iPad mini768x1024 pt (1536x2048 px @2x)
10.5" iPad Air834x1112 pt (1668x2224 px @2x)
9.7" iPad Air768x1024 pt (1536x2048 px @2x)
10.2" iPad810x1080 pt (1620x2160 px @2x)
9.7" iPad768x1024 pt (1536x2048 px @2x)
iPhone 12 Pro Max428x926 pt (1284x2778 px @3x)
iPhone 12 Pro390x844 pt (1170x2532 px @3x)
iPhone 12390x844 pt (1170x2532 px @3x)
iPhone 12 mini375x812 pt (1125x2436 px @3x)
iPhone 11 Pro Max414x896 pt (1242x2688 px @3x)
iPhone 11 Pro375x812 pt (1125x2436 px @3x)
iPhone 11414x896 pt (828x1792 px @2x)
iPhone XS Max414x896 pt (1242x2688 px @3x)
iPhone XS375x812 pt (1125x2436 px @3x)
iPhone XR414x896 pt (828x1792 px @2x)
iPhone X375x812 pt (1125x2436 px @3x)
iPhone 8 Plus414x736 pt (1080x1920 px @3x)
iPhone 8375x667 pt (750x1334 px @2x)
iPhone 7 Plus414x736 pt (1080x1920 px @3x)
iPhone 7375x667 pt (750x1334 px @2x)
iPhone 6s Plus414x736 pt (1080x1920 px @3x)
iPhone 6s375x667 pt (750x1334 px @2x)
iPhone 6 Plus414x736 pt (1080x1920 px @3x)
iPhone 6375x667 pt (750x1334 px @2x)
4.7" iPhone SE375x667 pt (750x1334 px @2x)
4" iPhone SE320x568 pt (640x1136 px @2x)
iPod touch 5th generation and later320x568 pt (640x1136 px @2x)

NOTE All scale factors in the table above are UIKit scale factors, which may differ from native scale factors. For developer guidance, see scale and nativeScale.

To learn how screen resolution impacts your app’s artwork, see Image Size and Resolution.

Auto Layout

Auto Layout is a development tool for constructing adaptive interfaces. Using Auto Layout, you can define rules (known as constraints) that govern the content in your app. For example, you can constrain a button so it’s always horizontally centered and positioned eight points below an image, regardless of the available screen space.

Diagram of an iPhone that displays a blue area that fills the available screen space. The blue area is overlaid by two lines with arrows on both ends that intersect at the center point of the screen.

Auto Layout automatically readjusts layouts according to the constraints you specify for certain environmental variations, known as traits. You can set your app to dynamically adapt to a wide range of traits, including:

For developer guidance, see NSLayoutConstraint and UITraitCollection.

Layout Guides and Safe Areas

A layout guide defines a rectangular region that helps you position, align, and space your content on the screen. The system includes predefined layout guides that make it easy to apply standard margins around content and restrict the width of text for optimal readability. You can also define custom layout guides.

A safe area defines the area within a view that isn’t covered by a navigation bar, tab bar, toolbar, or other views a view controller might provide.

  • Diagram of an iPhone in portrait orientation that displays a blue rectangle, representing the safe area, and two vertical pink strips at the left and right edges of the rectangle that represent margins.

    Diagram of an iPhone in landscape orientation that displays a blue rectangle, representing the safe area, and two vertical pink strips at the left and right edges of the rectangle that represent margins.

  • Diagram of an iPad in portrait orientation that displays a blue rectangle, representing the safe area, and two vertical pink strips at the left and right edges of the rectangle that represent margins.

    Diagram of an iPad in landscape orientation that displays a blue rectangle, representing the safe area, and two vertical pink strips at the left and right edges of the rectangle that represent margins.

iOS 15 and later defines a keyboard layout guide that represents the space the keyboard currently occupies and accounts for safe area insets. Using this guide can help you make the keyboard feel like an integral part of your app, regardless of the type of keyboard people use or where they position it. For developer guidance, see UIKeyboardLayoutGuide.

When the keyboard is visible, the layout guide represents its area and position.

When the keyboard dismisses, the top of the layout guide matches the bottom of the safe area layout guide.

Adhere to the system-defined safe areas and layout margins. These layout guides ensure appropriate insetting based on the device and context. The safe area also prevents content from underlapping the status bar, navigation bar, toolbar, and tab bar. Standard system-provided views automatically adopt a safe area layout guide.

For developer guidance, see Positioning Content Relative to the Safe Area and Positioning Content Within Layout Margins.

Size Classes

Size classes are traits that are automatically assigned to content areas based on their size. The system defines two size classes, regular (denotes expansive space) and compact (denotes constrained space), which describe the height and width of a view.

A view may possess any combination of size classes:

  • Regular width, regular height
  • Compact width, compact height
  • Regular width, compact height
  • Compact width, regular height

As with other environmental variations, iOS dynamically makes layout adjustments based on the size classes of a content area. For example, when the vertical size class changes from compact height to regular height — such as when the device rotates from landscape to portrait orientation — tab bars may become taller.

Device Size Classes

Different size class combinations apply to the full-screen experience on different devices, based on screen size.

Diagram of an iPad and an iPhone in both portrait and landscape orientations. Each device in each orientation includes a red outline around the available full-screen area for that orientation and arrowed lines that indicate the height and width of the area.

DevicePortrait orientationLandscape orientation
12.9" iPad ProRegular width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
11" iPad ProRegular width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
10.5" iPad ProRegular width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
9.7" iPadRegular width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
7.9" iPad miniRegular width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
iPhone 12 Pro MaxCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone 12 ProCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 12Compact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 12 miniCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 11 Pro MaxCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone 11 ProCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 11Compact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone XS MaxCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone XSCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone XRCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone XCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 8 PlusCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone 8Compact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 7 PlusCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone 7Compact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone 6s PlusCompact width, regular heightRegular width, compact height
iPhone 6sCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPhone SECompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height
iPod touch 5th generation and laterCompact width, regular heightCompact width, compact height

Multitasking Size Classes

On iPad, size classes also apply when your app runs in a multitasking configuration.

Diagram of iPad in landscape orientation with the left two-thirds of its screen shaded in yellow.

2/3 split view

Diagram of iPad in landscape orientation with the left half of its screen shaded in yellow.

1/2 split view

Diagram of iPad in landscape orientation with left one-third of its screen shaded in yellow.

1/3 split view

DeviceModePortrait orientationLandscape orientation
12.9" iPad Pro2/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
1/2 split viewN/ARegular width, regular height
1/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightCompact width, regular height
11" iPad Pro2/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
1/2 split viewN/ACompact width, regular height
1/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightCompact width, regular height
10.5" iPad Pro2/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
1/2 split viewN/ACompact width, regular height
1/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightCompact width, regular height
9.7" iPad2/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
1/2 split viewN/ACompact width, regular height
1/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightCompact width, regular height
7.9" iPad mini 42/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightRegular width, regular height
1/2 split viewN/ACompact width, regular height
1/3 split viewCompact width, regular heightCompact width, regular height

Ensure that primary content is clear at its default size. People shouldn’t have to scroll horizontally to read important text, or zoom to see primary images, unless they choose to change the size.

Maintain an overall consistent appearance throughout your app. In general, elements with similar functions should look similar.

Use visual weight and balance to convey importance. Large items catch the eye and appear more important than smaller ones. Larger items are also easier to tap, which is especially important when an app is used in distracting surroundings, such as in the kitchen or a gym. In general, place principal items in the upper half of the screen, near the leading side.

Use alignment to ease scanning and to communicate organization and hierarchy. Alignment makes an app look neat and organized, helps people focus while scrolling, and makes it easier to find information. Indentation and alignment can also indicate how groups of content are related.

If possible, support both portrait and landscape orientations. People prefer to use apps in different orientations, so it’s best when you can fulfill that expectation.

Be prepared for text-size changes. People expect most apps to respond when they choose a different text size in Settings. To accommodate some text-size changes, you might need to adjust the layout. For more information about text usage in your app, see Typography.

Diagram of a toolbar at the bottom edge of an iPhone screen. The leftmost icon is overlaid by a yellow disk, representing a fingertip, that doesn’t overlap any other icons. Below the diagram, a green checkmark in a circle indicates this is the recommended style of layout.

Diagram of a toolbar at the bottom edge of an iPhone screen. The leftmost icon is overlaid by a small yellow disk, representing a partial fingertip, that overlaps the icon to the right. Below the diagram, a red X in a circle indicates the layout is not recommended.

Provide ample touch targets for interactive elements. Try to maintain a minimum tappable area of 44x44 pt for all controls.

Image of a user’s Favorites list in the Phone app on a 4.7 inch iPhone.

4.7" iPhone

Image of a user’s Favorites list in the Phone app on a 5.8 inch iPhone.

5.8" iPhone

Preview your app on multiple devices. Although it’s generally best to preview features like wide color imagery on actual devices, you can use Simulator (included with Xcode) to check for clipping and other layout issues. For example, if your app supports landscape mode, you can use Simulator to make sure your layouts look great regardless of whether the device rotates left or right.

NOTE By default, view controllers support all orientations on iPad and all orientations except upside-down portrait on iPhone (for developer guidance, see supportedInterfaceOrientations). Some devices, such as iPhone X, don’t support upside-down portrait mode, regardless of whether your app supports it.

Apply readability margins when displaying text on larger devices. These margins keep text lines short enough to ensure a comfortable reading experience.

Adapting to Changes in Context

Maintain focus on the current content during context changes. Content is your highest priority. Changing focus when the environment changes can be disorienting and frustrating, and can make people feel like they’ve lost control of the app.

Avoid gratuitous layout changes. When someone rotates a device, the entire layout doesn’t have to change. For example, if your app shows a grid of images in portrait mode, it doesn’t have to present the same images as a list in landscape mode. Instead, it might simply adjust the dimensions of the grid. Try to maintain a comparable experience in all contexts.

If it’s essential that your app run only in landscape, support both variants. Your landscape-only app should run equally well whether people rotate their device to the left or the right. Don’t tell people to rotate their device when they use your app. If your app doesn’t rotate automatically when someone holds the device in an unsupported orientation, they’ll know instinctively to rotate it.

Customize your app’s response to rotation according to context. A game that lets people move a character by rotating the device, for example, probably shouldn’t switch orientations during gameplay. It could, however, display menus and intro sequences based on the current orientation.

Aim to support both iPad and iPhone. People appreciate having the flexibility to run your app on either type of iOS device. If certain features of your app require iPhone-specific hardware — like telephony — consider hiding or disabling those features on iPad and letting people use your app’s other features.

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 4.7 inch iPhone. The tree image is full size.

Full-screen 4.7" device image

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 5.8 inch iPhone. The tree image is scaled up and cropped at the left and right edges.

Cropping on 5.8" device

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 5.8 inch iPhone. The tree image is scaled down and letterboxed at the top and bottom edges.

Letterboxing on 5.8" device

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 5.8 inch iPhone. The tree image is full size.

Full-screen 5.8" device image

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 4.7 inch iPhone. The tree image is full size and is cropped at the top and bottom edges.

Cropping on a 4.7" device

Diagram of a tree image displayed fullscreen on a 4.7 inch iPhone. The tree image is scaled down and is pillarboxed at the left and right edges.

Pillarboxing on a 4.7" device

Be mindful of aspect ratio differences when reusing existing artwork. Different screen sizes may have different aspect ratios, causing artwork to appear cropped, letterboxed, or pillarboxed. Make sure that important visual content remains in view on all display sizes.

Designing a Full-Screen Experience

Extend visual elements to fill the screen. Make sure backgrounds extend to the edges of the display, and that vertically scrollable layouts, like tables and collections, continue all the way to the bottom.

Avoid explicitly placing interactive controls at the very bottom of the screen and in corners. People use swipe gestures at the bottom edge of the display to access features like the Home screen and app switcher, and these gestures may cancel custom gestures you implement in this area. The far corners of the screen can be difficult areas for people to reach comfortably.

Diagram of an iPhone in landscape orientation with a blue rectangle that indicates the safe area and vertical pink strips that indicate the left and right margins. Dark gray disks in each corner and yellow striped rectangles to the left and right of the indicator for accessing the Home screen indicate areas that should not contain controls.

Inset essential content to prevent clipping. In general, content should be centered and symmetrically inset so it looks great in any orientation, isn’t clipped by rounded corners, isn’t hidden by a sensor housing, and isn’t obscured by the indicator for accessing the Home screen. For best results, use standard, system-provided interface elements and Auto Layout to construct your interface and adhere to the system-defined layout guides and safe areas. When the device is in landscape orientation, it may be appropriate for some apps — like games — to place tappable controls in the lower portion of the screen (extending below the safe area) to allow more room for content. Use matching insets when placing controls at the top and bottom of the screen, and leave ample space around the Home indicator so people don’t accidentally target it when trying to interact with a control. Because the Home indicator remains centered on the screen, its location relative to your app’s interface may change.

Diagram of the bottom edge of an iPhone screen with a blue overlay that indicates the safe area and vertical pink strips that indicate the left and right margins. A Cancel button at the bottom edge extends to the inside edges of the margins. Below the diagram, a green checkmark in a circle indicates this is the recommended style of layout.

Green check in a circle to indicate correct usage.

Diagram of the bottom edge of an iPhone screen with a blue overlay that indicates the safe area and vertical pink strips that indicate the left and right margins. A Cancel button at the bottom edge extends to the outside edges of the margins. Below the diagram, a red X in a circle indicates the layout is not recommended.

Red X in a circle to indicate incorrect usage.

Inset full-width buttons. A button that extends to the edges of the screen might not look like a button. Respect the standard system-defined margins on the sides of full-width buttons. A full-width button appearing at the bottom of the screen looks best when it has rounded corners and is aligned with the bottom of the safe area — which also ensures that it doesn’t conflict with the Home indicator.

Don’t mask or call special attention to key display features. Don’t attempt to hide a device’s rounded corners, sensor housing, or indicator for accessing the Home screen by placing black bars at the top and bottom of the screen. Don’t use visual adornments like brackets, bezels, shapes, or instructional text to call special attention to these areas, either.

Be mindful of the status bar height. The status bar is taller on full-screen iPhone models than on other models. If your app assumes a fixed status bar height for positioning content below the status bar, you must update your app to dynamically position content based on the current device. Note that the status bar on a full-screen iPhone doesn’t change height when background tasks like voice recording and location tracking are active.

If you currently hide the status bar, reconsider that decision when your app runs on a full-screen iPhone. Full-screen iPhone models have more vertical space for content than other models, and the status bar occupies an area of the screen your app probably won’t fully utilize. The status bar also displays information people find useful. It should only be hidden in exchange for added value.

Allow auto-hiding of the indicator for accessing the Home screen sparingly. When auto-hiding is enabled, the indicator fades out if the user hasn’t touched the screen for a few seconds. It reappears when people touch the screen again. This behavior should be enabled only for passive viewing experiences like playing videos or photo slideshows.

Make sure your website looks great on an edge-to-edge display. See Designing Websites for iPhone X on webkit.org.

Sours: https://developer.apple.com/design/human-interface-guidelines/ios/visual-design/adaptivity-and-layout/
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What’s new

One of the biggest differences between iOS and Android has always been customization. Google’s mobile OS allows more control over how the software looks and feels, while Apple limits these changes in the name of consistency and usability. But with the launch of iOS 14 last week, iPhone and iPad owners are suddenly discovering how to make their phones and tablets look and feel truly different.

Search “#ios14” or “#ios14homescreen” on Twitter, for example, and you’ll see hundreds of examples of themed layouts that combine custom app icons, wallpaper, and widgets. (Be careful, though, as a couple of results for those searches are very much NSFW.) All over TikTok and YouTube, too, people are showing off custom home screens and layouts.

Many are themed around pop culture phenomena like Animal Crossing, Steven Universe, Harry Potter, Minecraft, and BTS, while others focus on a single aesthetic, like line drawings or neon icons. Some even recreate older user interfaces, riffing off the PlayStation 2’s memory card screen, for example, or making iOS 14 look like iOS 6. All in all, it’s the sort of beautiful, visual chaos you usually associate with custom PC themes or Winamp skins.

Why is this happening now? In part it’s because of the release of iOS 14, which gave the option to add widgets to their home screen. Usually, widgets are used to add quick-access functionality to your home screen, letting you see information about reminders, the weather, or calendar appointments at a glance. But you can also use them to display any image of your choice, which has led to users turning them into picture frames for their digital front rooms. You can also, with the right app, customize the appearance of the default widgets.

The other customization options users are taking advantage of are much older. Choosing your own wallpaper is obviously an option that’s been around for decades, but creating custom app icons was only made possible by Apple’s Shortcuts app. This was first introduced in 2018 in iOS 12 and allows you to automate certain actions in iOS. People have been using Shortcuts to create custom app icons for years, but it seems with the release of iOS 14 and the arrival of widgets, many people are discovering this functionality all over again.

Making your own custom home screen is easy but time-consuming. The main thing you’ll need is the actual visuals: a custom wallpaper and accompanying icon pack. Some designers are already sharing these in easy to download packages (as with the Animal Crossing example above) but a bit of Googling will usually get you what you need.

For the Windows 98 layout I made for the top image of this article (inspired by this tweet) I found all the background images and app icons I needed through some quick searches. Though it must be said that getting all these assets into shape, including coloring in the backgrounds of the transparent PNG icons by hand, was a complete pain and took at least an hour. Definitely go for pre-made packs if you can.

To add custom widgets to your home screen you’ll need to download an app called Widgetsmith. Once you’ve downloaded that just open the app and click to create the widget size of your choice. You can then customize the default iOS widgets like the clock and calendar with different fonts and colors, or create a widget that shows a static image. Once you’ve created your widget, just head to your homescreen, long-press on the screen to bring up the customization options, then click the + sign in the top left of your screen to add a widget. Scroll down to find your Widgetsmith creations.

Lastly, to add custom app icons you’ll need to download Apple’s Shortcuts app. Once you’ve got that, open it up and click the + sign in the top right to create a new app. Then go > Add Action > Scripting > Open App > Choose, and select the app you want to customize. Once you’ve done that, click “Next” in the top right, name the app, and click Done.

Then, to customize the icon and add it to your home screen, click the three-dot menu next to the shortcut action you just created, then click the three-dot menu again, and then select “Add to Home Screen.” Then click on the icon under the “Home Screen Name and Icon” pane and select the image you want to use from your camera roll. Phew! All done.

You’ll now have an app with a custom icon, though there is one very annoying caveat: each time you click an app it will jump first to the Shortcuts app and then to your app of choice. This means there’s a slight delay every time you open an app, but who said getting the #aesthetic of your choice was easy? However, if you know a way around this please let us know in the comments — and share any creations you’ve been inspired to make yourself!

Sours: https://www.theverge.com/21448712/customize-iphone-home-screen-app-icons-widget-ios14
*aesthetic iOS 14 TUTORIAL* - step-by-step themed iPhone background

How to customise your iPhone home screen with Widgetsmith and Shortcuts

(Pocket-lint) - Apple finally lets iPhone and iPad users customise their home screen, with the release of the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 software updates that arrived in September 2020. The updates introduced the ability to add personalised widgets and even change the look of app icons.

There are examples of users' home screens all over Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, and other social platforms. Just search “#ios14homescreen” to get a taste of what you can do now. But there are a few caveats you should know.

For instance, the process of customising your home screen is anything but quick and seamless. You have to rely on third-party apps and even implement a hacky workaround using Siri Shortcuts. Confused? No worries. We guide you step by step, below. 

How to customise your iPhone home screen

Step one: Update your iPhone to iOS 14

  • Make sure your iPhone is up to date

Update your iPhone to the latest version of iOS - which is currently iOS 14.4. Here is Apple's support page on how to do that.

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Step two: Choose a colour palette or theme

  • Find a wallpaper and save it to your camera roll
  • Find a coordinating icon pack and save it to your camera roll

Figure out your desired home screen aesthetic. Do you like nude colours? Do you want something more retro? Check out some examples below for inspiration.

As part of this process, you'll want to pick a colour palette or theme, find a wallpaper, and download an icon pack or graphics to replace your apps' existing icon art. We recommend combing through Pinterest, Google images, Etsy, and other resources.

You can go quite simple with this, with a minimalist-yet-lux background image and glittery app icons to pair with it, or you can get complicated and try to do something time-intensive like replicate the PlayStation 2's memory card screen.

Step three: Download Widgetsmith and Shortcuts

You need two apps to help you actually customise your home screen's widgets and apps: Widgetsmith and Shortcuts.

Widgets add quick-access functionality to your home screen, like weather or the calendar at a glance. You'll need Widgetsmith to create a widget with whatever background colour, photo, and font you want. There are alternatives in the App Store, such as Color Widget, but we've used Widgetsmith and can verify it works.

As for Shortcuts, it lets you get automate tasks via apps or by asking Siri. You can also use Shortcuts to create custom app icons. It's been around for a long time, but with the release of iOS 14 and the ability to add widgets to the home screen, many people are now pairing the two functionalities to create a unique home screen.

Step four: Clean your home screen

  • Remove all your old apps from the home screen

Once you've got all your materials handy, start cleaning your home screen. Hold down on each app to access a pop-up menu that will let you remove it from your home screen (select Remove app > Move to App Library or Delete app). Do this until your screen is clear. Apple's support page offers more help if you need it.

Step five: Set your new wallpaper

  • Go to Settings > Wallpaper > Choose a New Wallpaper

Now we can begin the process of actually creating your new home screen. Let's start by setting that new wallpaper you picked out in step two. Go to Settings > Tap Wallpaper > Tap Choose a New Wallpaper. Apple also has a support page here with more details if you need it.

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Step six: Change your app icons

Open the Shortcuts app and follow these steps for every app you want to add to your home screen with a custom icon:

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  1. In the Shortcuts app, hit the + button to create a new shortcut.
  2. Select Add Action on the next page.
  3. Search for the "Open App" option and then select it.
    • Tap the "i" and then favourite this action for quick access later.
  4. On the New Shortcut page, tap Choose (next to Open).
  5. Search and select an app. (Example: Messenger.)
  6. Tap the three-dot menu in the corner.
  7. On the Details page, give your shortcut a name or wakephrase for Siri to recognise.
  8. Tap Add to Home Screen.
  9. Name your shortcut and then tap the icon thumbnail next to the name you entered.
  10. You can then take or choose a photo to replace the app's existing icon.
    • Select Choose Photo
    • From your Camera Roll, select the app icons or graphics you saved earlier.
    • You will be asked to frame the shot.
  11. Preview your changes and tap Add to add the app to your home screen.
    • It will be added to your home screen as a bookmark, but it works like an app.
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Step seven: Create custom widgets

Open the Widgetsmith app and follow these steps for every custom widget you want to create:

  1. Pick a small, medium, or large widget to add by hitting the Add button.
    • Widgetsmith might show examples. You can swipe to delete or tap to customise. 
  2. Select the widget you just added.
  3. Tap the Default Widget square below the name to start customising the widget.
    • You will see the option to pick a new style, font, tint, and background color.
  4. Tap the Back button when done sorting through the personalisation options.
  5. Tap the widget's name at the top to rename it.
  6. Hit Save to save your changes.
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Step eight: Add custom widgets to your home screen

Follow these steps for every custom Widgetsmith widget you want to add to your home screen:

  1. Go to the left of your home screen, to the Widgets page.
  2. Scroll to the bottom and tap Edit.
  3. Tap the "+" button in the corner.
  4. Search for "Widgetsmith" and select it.
  5. Tap the size widget you want to add and then select Add Widget.
  6. While the widget wiggles (if not, hit Edit), hold down and slide it to the home screen.
    • If you made more than one widget, hold down on a widget on your screen and Edit it.
    • Choose which Widgetsmith widget you want.
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Step nine: Arrange your home screen layout

  • Put everything where you want it and voila!

So, now you should have a bunch of custom widgets and apps on your home screen. Hold down on one of the widgets, then select Edit Home Screen from the pop-up menu, and while each of your apps and widgets wiggle, slide them around or to your dock until you get the layout you want. Easy peasy! 

Are there any caveats you should know?

Thankfully, with the most recent version of iOS 14, Apple removed the biggest 'gothca'. Any shortcut icons used to load the Siri Shortcut interface first, before taking to the app. With iOS 14.4 it doesn't do that, so if you're updated you're good on that front. If you see the Siri Shortcut screen first you're probably still running an older version of software.  

Oh, and because you can't see the names of the custom apps you've placed in the dock at the bottom of your phone, you'll have to memorise what you put there, so we suggest using easily recognisable icons for those particular apps. 

We should also note Widgetsmith has a $2 monthly subscription fee if you use its premium widgets, like Weather. You also see the "Widgetsmith" name below a widget, even if you pay up. Color Widget is the same, unfortunately. The only other downside to using Widgetsmith and Shortcuts to customise your iPhone home screen? It honestly takes a good couple hours to do. You'd be surprised how time consuming it is, but it's also very fun and creative.

What are the best Widgetsmith alternatives?

If you're looking for more apps like Widgetsmith, you're in luck, as there are quite a few. Here are some popular ones:

Color Widgets

Color Widgets lets you add custom widgets directly onto your home screen. Choose from premade widget designs, or make your own with the built-in editor. 

Widgeridoo

Create your own custom widgets with just a few taps. You can combine different "blocks" into widgets, including calendar events, text and images, and more.

Widget Wizard

For $2, you can create single or combination widgets. There are ones for agendas, health, clock, stat bar, and more. All are customisable to match your theme.

Widgetly

Widgetly lets you create photo widgets, solid background widgets, time display, and step count widgets. You can also create custom app icons for your home screen. Yes, it costs $1, but there are no subscriptions, no hidden costs, and everything is included in the app. 

Photo Widget: Simple

Photo Widget lets you make widgets out of images. It supports three sizes, two ratios (1:1 / 2:1), and any number of widgets. You can decorate them, too.

Need some #ios14homescreen inspiration?

Check out these amazing - and sometimes awful - examples of custom-made iPhone home screens:

Want to know more?

We have these other handy guides with more information about the App Library and Widgets:

Writing by Maggie Tillman. Editing by Cam Bunton. Originally published on .

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Sours: https://www.pocket-lint.com/phones/news/apple/153891-how-to-customize-iphone-homescreen-app-icons-widgets-layout-widgetsmith-colorwidgets-shortcuts

Layout iphone

Novedades iOS 14

Your iPhone ($499 at Apple) home screen has looked and worked pretty much the same way for the last 13 years, but all that's set to change now that Apple has released iOS 14. After you install iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 on a compatible iPhone or iPad, you'll have more options and features to personalize your home screen than you've ever had with iOS before.

Taking cues from core features Android has had for years, Apple has focused much of the iOS 14 update on making the home screen simpler to organize, with more customization options, smarter suggestions and leaner, faster app experiences. The end result is a mobile operating system that does more to get out of your way, giving you faster, more direct access to the information, products and services you use.

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We're going to take a look at the biggest new home screen layout and organization features available in the new operating system, as well as how you'll use them after you install iOS 14 on your device. (If you want to help ensure a smooth update, be sure to take care of these housekeeping tasks before starting the installation.)

Novedades iOS 14

iOS 14 can help you clear your home screen clutter

Unless you stay on top of it, after a while, apps you download start piling up and eventually your home screen begins to sprawl. App Library cleans that mess up for you -- in a roundabout way.

What it is: A home screen page one flick beyond your last home screen page. App Library lists all of your apps in smartly curated category folders that display the most recently or frequently used apps at the top and all your other apps by type.

How you'll use it: App Library doesn't reorganize your home screens for you. But it does organize all your apps in a new view so you can quickly find and open them without swiping through page on page. You can also search or scroll by app name.

You can rely on the App Library as much or as little as you want to. If you'd prefer to curate your own app folders like you've been doing, the App Library will still be there as the final page of your home screen if you need it. If you want a few customized pages but to use the App Library to quickly find everything else, you can choose which pages to hide and which to display. Or you can go all-in and have nothing except one custom page of apps followed by the App Library.

How to get started: First, you'll trigger your iPhone's "jiggle mode" that you use to rearrange apps. Once you're in that view, you can tap the row of dots at the bottom of the screen and then check or uncheck home screen pages to keep or get rid of them from your typical view. Apps from the pages you uncheck will then be accessible only from inside the App Library, which you'll get to by swiping right past the last page of your home screen.

Now playing:Watch this: iOS 14 hands-on preview

12:06

Widgets can be resized and added to home screen

Since their introduction in 2008, iOS widgets have been relegated to the Notification Center or Today View. iOS 14 finally lets you bring them onto your home screen.

What it is:Home screen widgets are large, dynamic "icons" that display live app data like the weather or your daily step count.

How you'll use them: Instead of opening apps like weather, calendar or fitness tracking apps to see your current data, you'll be able to see an overview of their core information displayed in a live feed on your home screen. One widget -- Smart Stack -- lets you curate and flip through several widgets. It will also let you display different widgets at different times of day all from one location on your home screen. So for example, you might see the weather report in the morning, a news widget in the afternoon, your step count in the early evening and wind down mode before bed.

How to get started: You can tap and hold a widget in Today View and move it onto your home screen or, to do more, enter jiggle mode, then tap the + in the upper left corner and choose a widget. From there you can swipe through the three available sizes, then drag and drop the one you want onto your home screen.

Novedades iOS 14

App Clips: Mini apps you can launch without downloading

Sometimes you need to use an app once or twice, but the last thing you need is another app on your iPhone -- App Clips let you access an app without having to download it. If you've been the person holding up the line to download and sign up for an app you'll use once to pay for a parking meter, this is for you.

What it is: Basic app features, run from a popup window rather than a full app window.

How you'll use them: If you need to use an app, but know you may not need it again -- say, to order to-go food from a restaurant while on vacation -- App Clips let you complete transactions and basic tasks without having to download the entire app.

How to get started: App Clips can be triggered a bunch of different ways: A web link, a text message, from inside the Maps app, a QR code or NFC tag. Once you trigger one, you'll be able to sign in using Sign in With Apple and pay for any transactions using Apple Pay, then back out of the app with no more clutter on your iPhone storage or home screen than you started with.

Once again, Apple doubles down on user privacy with iOS 14, as detailed by CNET's Alfred Ng here. Wondering whether your current iPhone will support iOS 14? Here's a list of compatible devices to see if yours is one of them. Wondering when the iPhone 12 might arrive? Here's our best guesses for an iPhone 12 launch. For a look at Apple's new subscription bundle, Apple One, here's our breakdown of the available features and pricing.

Sours: https://www.cnet.com/tech/services-and-software/ios-14-biggest-changes-iphone-home-screen-whats-changing-how-it-works-apple-upgrade/
*aesthetic iOS 14 TUTORIAL* - step-by-step themed iPhone background

Your iPhone is capable, reliable, and sturdy—as long as you don’t drop it again on that one corner that keeps cracking. But over decades of refinement, it’s also gotten a little boring. Your apps line up in tidy rows, you swipe until you remember which screen you put Disney+ on, repeat 80 times a day or so. The addition of mighty widgets in iOS 14, though, lets you break out of that rut for the first time, well, ever.

If you’ve ever had an Android phone, you’ve likely tinkered with widgets before. On iOS, not so much, outside of a modest implementation in the iPhone and iPad’s “Today View,” the neglected territory you get to by swiping right from your home or lock screen. In iOS 14 though, the dam has burst. Widgets are welcome anywhere, across a wide range of apps in a variety of sizes. You can edit them, move them, and stack them to your heart’s content. You can download third-party apps that open the door to TikTok virality. Combine them with the iOS Shortcuts feature, and you can even go full Infinity Wars.

No matter how you choose to widget, it’s a way to make your iPhone a little more useful at a glance, and a lot more customized to your specific needs. Here’s a guide to whether widgets are right for you (probably) and how to get started with them (easily). Caution: The following contains prolific use of the word jiggle.

So What’s a Widget?

You know how your iPhone display shows little rounded-square icons for all of your apps, sometimes with notifications popping out of the upper-right corner, and that’s about all the information it gives you? Widgets are designed to fill in all the other details you might want at a glance.

Apple’s iOS widgets are available in three sizes, which we’ll call small, medium, and venti. Kidding! We’ll call the last one large. They take up the space of four apps (square), eight apps (horizontal rectangle), and 16 apps (big square, basically half of your screen), respectively. They use all that extra space to surface handy information.

Take the Weather app, probably the most straightforward example of what a widget can do for you. The small iOS Weather widget shows you the current temperature, that day’s forecasted high and low, and a tiny graphic to convey if it’s sunny, cloudy, rainy, and so on. Step up to medium and you get all that plus a snapshot forecast of the next five hours. Going gigante adds a five-day outlook.

Some apps offer multiple variations of widget. Wikipedia can just as easily show you a “picture of the day,” a glimpse at “this day in history,” and a rundown of the online encyclopedia’s most-read stories today. You can plop all three on your home screen at once if you’re so inclined. (We’re not really reviewing individual widgets here, but heads up that if you go with the daily photo, choose the big widget to minimize funky cropping.) Note that not every widget offers every size. Google, for one, keeps it modest with small and medium only; the former is a quick search function, the latter adds ready access to Google Lens, Incognito Mode, and voice search.

As for which apps you can widget with, that remains a moving target as developers hustle to add the feature. As you might have guessed, weather, calendar, and financial apps are leading the way; Fantastical alone has 11 to widgets to chose from. Apple’s native apps—as well as some iOS settings, like Battery and Screen Time—all offer them as well. And there are also dedicated widget apps, like Widgetsmith, for those who want to more fully micromanage their home screen experience. We’ll talk about that more in a minute, since that’s how you can really dive into changing up your iPhone’s whole aesthetic.

Even if you have no interest in going that far, there’s almost certainly at least some level of widgeting your iPhone could benefit from. Fortunately, it’s a cinch to get them on your phone and try them out for yourself.

How to Add and Stack Your Widgets

It’s simple! To get started, just press and hold a blank space on your home screen until the apps start to jiggle. In the upper left corner, you’ll see a plus sign. Tap it and you can scroll through a list of available widgets for the apps on your phone. Tap again on the widget you’re thinking about adding, and you can swipe through what its small, medium, and large versions look like. Once you’ve made your choice, just tap Add Widget.

You’ll find yourself back on whatever screen you started from, icons still jiggling merrily. iOS will have displaced your apps to make room for the widget, but just hold down on it and move it around like you would any normal-sized app. Tap Done when everything is right where you want it, or wait for the jiggling to stop on its own eventually.

You can edit some widgets as well, by long-pressing them and tapping Edit Widget. It’s a mixed bag in terms of how many offer that option, and the ones that do have pretty limited utility. You can change the location that the Weather and Clock apps pull from, for instance, but otherwise there’s not much worth mentioning yet.

As you start to accumulate widgets, and displaced apps continue to domino to further screens, things may start to feel untidy again. For that, the fix is to use a stack, which layers like-sized widgets on top of each other so you can swipe through them instead of each taking up its own space. To let Apple handle the selection process for you, go ahead and make your apps jiggle, hit the plus sign in the upper left corner, and tap Smart Stack. You can chose among three sizes again, and iOS 14 will plug in whatever widgets make the most sense for that time of day. (My Smart Stack included a pretty comprehensive, even redundant smörgåsbord of Weather, Calendar, Photos, Apple TV+, Google, and DuckDuckGo.)

Making your own custom stack is probably the better way to go until Smart Stacks get a little smarter. Fortunately, that’s also simple! Once you’ve got some widgets on your home screen, you can drag them on top of each other when your apps are in jiggle mode. To edit the order, hold down on the stack and tap Edit Stack. You can drag them into whatever order you like, or turn on Smart Rotate to let iOS surface what it thinks is most useful in that moment, or swipe left to delete a widget. Tap the X when you’re done fiddling.

How to Trick Out Your iPhone Home Screen

OK, that’s it for the basics. But if you’ve spent much time on TikTok lately you’re interested in more than just basic. You’re interested in a total widget takeover, and for that you’re going to need Widgetsmith.

The advent of iOS 14 has spurred many, many dedicated widget apps, and they should all mostly get you where you want to go. But it’s Widgetsmith that has won the hearts and minds of influencers, propelling it to the top of the App Store charts for several weeks. The main reason for its success? The absurd amount of choice it offers.

If you install Widgetsmith, it’ll generate widgets across eight categories for you: Weather, Calendar, World Time, Reminders, Health, Astronomy, Tides, and Photos. (Know ahead of time that Weather and Tides require a subscription of $2 per month or $20 per year, and that features like Health and Photos require handing over potentially sensitive permissions to the app.) So far, so simple. But it’s the manifold ways you can customize each of those widgets that will send you spiraling down the rabbit hole.

Take Widgetsmith’s time and date options alone. You can obviously choose between small, medium, and large. But if you tap on the medium version, say, then tap Default Widget, you can choose among 11 presentational styles of varying information density, 13 fonts, 14 tint colors (applied to the numbers and letters inside the widget), 30 background colors, and 15 border colors. And again, that’s just for the time and date! You can spend hours tapping to perfect how that one widget looks, and then do it all over again to apply the same fastidiousness to all the other Widgetsmith categories. You can even set restrictions so that specific widgets only appear at certain times.

Once you’re satisfied with how a widget has come together, tap Save in the upper-right corner. To keep better track of which widget is which, you can hit Tap to Rename in the top-center of your display. And then to get your new widget(s) actually on your home screen, close out of the Widgetsmith app and head to your widget options by doing the app-jiggle-plus-sign dance. Select Widgetsmith, then the size of the widget you want to place. Then long-press on the Widgetsmith widget, tap Edit Widget, and select your creation.

Widgetsmith plays an important role in broader home screen customization as well, since it lets you upload custom images for any widget size. From within the app, just tap on the size of the widget you want, then on Default Widget, scroll a tiny bit to Custom, and then tap Photo, then Selected Photo, then Choose Photo to grab something from your iOS photo library. Phew! You can also select Custom Text instead, with all the aforementioned font and color choices at your disposal.

Embrace the App Icon Pack

Technically that’s about it for widgets. But there’s a decent chance you’re also looking for how to change the app icons on your iPhone as well, since that’s how you get glories like this.

To achieve full home screen harmony, you’re going to need the following: the iOS Shortcuts app, images to replace your existing app icons, and a heaping helping of patience. Achieving iOS 14 aesthetic takes a whole lot of time.

The hard way to get started is to design your own app icons. The much, much easier way is to hit up a vendor like icon8, Flaticon, or a bunch of Etsy folk and find icons that match your style. Once you’ve accumulated enough art, open the Shortcuts app and tap the plus sign in the upper right corner, then Add Action. Tap Scripting, then Open App, then Choose. Pick the app whose icon you want to customize, then Next, then give the shortcut a name where prompted, then tap Done. (You are not done.)

Now tap the three-dot menu on the shortcut you just made, then tap it again on the next screen and tap Add to Home Screen. Tap on the icon under Home Screen Name and Icon, and you’ll be presented with three options: Take Photo, Choose Photo, and Choose File. Go grab the image you want to reassign that app, and you’re all set.

Two things to keep in mind: Tapping on your new icon will kick you to the Shortcuts app first, then over to the app you actually want, so you’re giving up a couple of seconds every time you use it. And the original app will remain on your home screen, so you’ll want to banish it to the iOS 14 App Library by long-pressing it, then tapping Remove App and Move to App Library. Don’t delete it by mistake!

To complete the look, pick a wallpaper that complements your widgets and apps; to skip the line, try Etsy again, where you can buy bundles of icons, widget quotes, and wallpapers that all play nice together. Once you've got your image of choice in your photo library, head to Settings, then Wallpaper, then Choose a New Wallpaper and find it there.

If all of this sounds like a lot of work, well … it is. But when your widgets, app icons, and wallpaper act in harmony, you can create something pretty special. Or you can do something like this:

Which is even better.


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Sours: https://www.wired.com/story/customize-iphone-home-screen-widgets-aesthetic-ios14/

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