UPDATE: Well it took a month+ after my original posting in early March, but looks like somebody has made this into a real product, and gone to town with the idea on the jailbroken iOS’ Cydia marketplace. Its called Velox and theyre charging for it.
A decent way to do Widgets and Shortcuts in iOS while maintaining that Apple ‘feel’
I have no idea if this has been suggested before, but heres a comp I made showing a way to do Widgets in iOS with minimal changes to the basic iOS UI. (This was made quickly so it doesn’t look as nice as it could. A lot of the elements are cut and paste)
The demo image attached here shows the settings app, which has always been an iOS pain-point. It desperately needs Android style switches for turning phone antennae on-off quickly, unlike the current method which takes far too many clicks. Cydia jailbreak customizations often put these in the Notification center, but Apple clearly doesnt think its a good idea, or it would have been done by now.
The suggested Icon Sheet slides out with a Double-tap on the Icon. It can be used by different apps in any way the Developer wants.
What the Sheet can show and do:
- Calendar – ‘Today’ events, or quick view of a Month calendar
- Weather – current weather for your location
- Clock – Time in a ‘favorited’ Time-zone, like your home-city (right now you open Clock > World Clock > Scroll to city)
- Clock – Quick timer (maybe using a slider for minutes)
- Safari – iCloud tabs or Bookmarks – will save many clicks.
- Camera – Shortcut to open App and start shooting Video (saves having wait for the app to open and only then slide switch for video mode)
- Settings – Please can we have this? See image attached with this post
- Twitter — Switch between multiple accounts, and open app.
What I think the advantages are:
- Sheet is directly linked to the app icon – doesnt float around the homescreen like Android widgets, and dont need more UI for alignment or positioning
- No clutter of the homescreen. I like the iOS Homescreen. Widgets as done on Android can be visually overwhelming on the home-screen, mis-aligned, often ugly and power hungry.
- Is simple and easy to understand. Most widgets are over-kill of styles, sizes and info that is better presented by the full app.
- Developer can let users choose what they want to show here, maybe.
- Default sheet can be a Support link with error reporting — for those times when the app doesnt open at all.