Mac Observer Staff: What's on Your iPhone Home Screen?

After finding out what sorts of things TMO staffers keep in their menu bars, I was curious about the rest of the setups around TMO Towers. So I asked around, and I have the results for you. First off, everyone's wallpaper/background image is either primarily blue or yellow/orange, with only one being an image from Apple.

Also, virtually everyone when asked a followup question about their home screen said it needed updating. As for general use of the first screen, if you primarily launch apps from the search bar or the "running apps" view, you don't really notice or care about your home screen, all that matters is if the app is installed.

On the other hand, if you're Kelly, you think about it a lot and optimize your home screen based on which hand you use (that in:play app is for playing music in the car, which I do with my right hand. Every thing else is lefty, so I've adjusted icons accordingly). We have everything from a home screen sans folders to a screen which might include folders within folders if it were a possibility! Let's start with Editor-in-Chief, Bryan Chaffin.

Bryan Chaffin:


Bryan Chaffin's Home Screen. Behold it! And his nineteen reminders!

Top Row: Messages, Calendar, Photos, Clock
Camera, Videos, Reminders, Maps
IBooks, Notes, Settings, Twitter
Contacts, Passbook, Authenticator, FaceTime
Dock: Phone, Mail, Safari, Music

Bryan confessed he doesn't really use the home screen to launch anything and barely looks at it. Most of the "stuff" he needs to do while mobile is done on an iPad, so even basic iPhone use is mostly a matter of double-tap, then swipe to what he wants from the list of running apps. In fact, he was surprised when I asked about the reminders, so it's safe to say that doesn't get much mileage.


Adam Christianson:


Adam. Much folders, so organize, wow. 

Wallpaper: Gryffindor by Louie Mantia
Top Row: Fantastical, Reminders, Contacts, Clock
Second Row: Weather, Maps, Calcbot, 1Password
Third Row: News (folder),Write (folder),Productivity (folder), Files (folder)
Fourth Row: Social (folder), Google (folder), Development (folder), Analytics (folder)
Bottom Row: Remote Access (folder), Passbook, Settings
Dock: Mail, Messages, Phone, Safari

And here's a sampling of those folders now!

In Files (folder):
Dropbox, Transporter, Documents 5
AirStash, CrashPlan

In Social (folder):

Foursquare, Facebook, Untappd
Meetup, Voxer
Social (folder) - Page 2
Delicious, BrewskiMe

In Development (folder):

MySQL Mobile Database Client, Tumblr, Wordpress
WWDC App, Locate Beacon, GeoHopper
Bleu Setup, BLE Arduino

Adam spends a bit more time on his home screen than Bryan does, I'm guessing. And I'm impressed with those folders; it's like nobody told Adam you can't do "real" work on an iPhone or something! Clearly he's a man about town and needs access to all the things, all the time. I'm a little afraid to see his iPad's home screen.

Jeff Gamet:

Jeff's home screen. With Starbucks on it. Shocking.

Top Row: Messages, Settings, iPhoto, Camera
Second Row: Starbucks1Password, Maps, Fahrenheit
Third Row: InstapaperReeder 2iA WriterSkyMotion
Fourth Row: SwarmRiposteInstagram, Calendar
Bottom Row: OmniFocus 2Tweetbot 3Fitbit, Passbook
Dock: Phone, Mail, Safari, Fantastical 2

Jeff is a very busy man, as evidenced by not one, but two calendars on his home screen.  And also the Foursquare Swarm app, to check in all these places, and caffeine to survive such busy days. I am impressed he had the time to send this to me since there's four things on his calendar right this minute! Well. One of them anyway. Perhaps the other tracks events in a parallel universe...

Dave Hamilton:


Dave cares not about the contents of his folders. Not even a little.

Top Row: Utilities, iOS Essentials, Productivity, Photography
Second Row: Clock, Shopping, Travel, Intellicast
Third Row: Newsstand, Video, Books, Games
Fourth Row: Google Voice, Sonos, Music, FaceTime
Bottom Row: Humin, Squarespace, Browsers, Pedometer

Dock: Phone, Messaging, Safari, Calendars

I asked Dave for shots of his folders, and he said if he did that, he'd have to start cleaning them out, and therefore he was disinclined to acquiesce to my request. I'm guessing one of those badges has something to do with it. That, or the fact that he needs an entire folder for calendars! I thought Jeff was a busy guy with only two! Anyway, if you want to know what's in those folders, you have to ask. It's a nice background though, colorful but not overwhelming.

John Martellaro:


John's home screen. It's lean and mean. It's also true it's very blue.

Top Row: Messages, FaceTime, Photos, Camera
Second Row:Stocks, Reminders, Calendar, Olloclip
Third Row:Weather, Contacts, App Store, iTunes Store
Fourth Row: Notes, Clock, Skype, Google Maps
Bottom Row: Nav Clock, PCalc, Settings
Dock: Phone, Safari, Music, Mail

John keeps it simple. In fact, a good portion of the apps on the first page are straight from Apple. You'll also notice that so far everyone has weather on the first screen, regardless of how much they actually use it as a launcher. And not much modification of the Dock either, most of what Apple put there remains for everyone.

Kelly Guimont:


Kelly's home screen. Apparently there's shopping to do...

Wallpaper: Spaceship Earth, by Louie Mantia

Top Row: Photos, Camera, Instagram, Shopping (folder)
Second Row:Messages, Words (folder), Locals (folder), Newsstand
Third Row: OmniFocus 2, Rise, Path, Due
Fourth Row: Twitterrific, Riposte, Calendars 5, in:play
Bottom Row: Favd, Drafts, Hizzy(folder), (intentionally empty space for swiping area)
Dock: Phone, Needs (folder), Mail, Safari

Like Adam, my background comes from Louie Mantia. When it isn't this background, it's generally another one from Louie's site. As I mentioned above, I calibrated my home screen primarily for my left thumb, so the leftmost row gets a lot of use, the one next to it slightly more. I use in:play in the car and Due when I'm cooking, so those are "right handed" apps. Mostly the last two pages are things I'm testing, whether officially or unofficially, so I haven't sorted them into folders or anything. On average I'm a three-screen person, with a fair number of folders.


So what's on your home screen? Got a trick that makes yours more useful? Tell us about it!