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Hands-On With iOS 14 Widgets, Custom Icons, and Home Screen Setup

psxp

macrumors regular
Jan 8, 2008
169
69
Ew why would you lol.
I was anti widgets when the betas were out much like how windows 10 mobile started becoming android like. But even with the android esque look, it doesn’t annoy me
So it is still IOS at the heart.

I was actually just joking :) BUT I have been using Android for about 10 years after ditching the iPhone when my iPhone 4 crapped out. the past 5 yrs i have had a iPhone for work, but 90% of the time I'm on my Pixel.

One of the things I really liked when i first went to the Android OS was widgets. I can't believe its this long for Apple to catch up. now just give us the ability to move app icons and keep space between them on the homescreen grid!
 
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ackmondual

macrumors 65816
Dec 23, 2014
1,109
343
U.S.A., Earth
I agree. I use both iOS and Android and Apple’s stranglehold on icon positioning and style is very aggravating. There is nothing exciting about using this unnecessarily complicated method to customize icons. If Apple wants to maintain control, they should at least offer UI customizations with baked in options similar to the Pixels and a host of other devices. My 3a has multiple icon packs, color accents and fonts in the software without ever having to navigate the Play Store.
Ditto. I've used both Android from 2.3 to currently 10 (should be 11, but I keep forgetting to set the update), and iOS from ios3 to ios7 (ios8 on an iPad). Latter is used much less, but still used none of the less. One of those simple but nontrivial things I like about Android is my most used app icons are at the bottom of the home screen, and working my way up from there by priority, with a 2nd page for more flexibility.

Because they already did this crap 10-15 years ago... Its only seen as a big deal because iPhone finally has it... For android users this is all very old news
I've used a Palm OS device. I recall the one big news then was you can now copy and paste text in iOS! Something I thought was standard in ALL computing devices (including my black and white PDA) turned out to be not true :D


Very good point! I forgot about that. Most users have to buy a new phone to get the latest OS.
You're saying that like it's a bad thing :p But on a serious note, if updates are important to you, then stick with Pixels and iPhones. I ended up getting one major OS update on my LG G4, and a 0.x update on my Galaxy s2 and s4. However, my phones were so inexpensive that buying a new one wasn't a big deal. I use a $200 phone for 2 to 4 years, I'm still coming out ahead.
 
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iBreatheApple

macrumors 68030
Sep 3, 2011
2,678
508
Florida
These people do need to make money. Stop being selfish because you want to be cheap.
I’m guessing you skimmed over the excerpt about “bringing back” one-time payments due to a perceived need to project or reply aggressively for some reason. Not sure how this has anything to do with being “selfish.” Recurring subscriptions for widgets is ridiculous in my opinion. And I’ll bet I’m not the minority. Fortunately, I exercised my choice to avoid them altogether, but it’s ridiculous enough to me that I wanted to have a discussion about it.

Your feedback has been noted, thanks.
 
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iBreatheApple

macrumors 68030
Sep 3, 2011
2,678
508
Florida
Note: To the users that don't like that freedom I have no words except that they are pathetic. You like default, don't do anything then. Many of us grew up back in days when we used to customization osx and iOS with jailbreak were in the gold era and it absolutely fantastic.
Everyone has different expectations, needs, and wants from their device. If their view doesn’t align with your own, that’s okay.
 
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Khaleesi Kendall

macrumors member
Mar 31, 2020
82
66
This just looks like a cheap dress on a sexy device. Sorry to those excited for it, and I’m sure it will improve, a lil. And I see people STILL posting about how Apple controls everything. Well, I let them, because it’s their hardware and software and it works. We get it, Android is open source, I’ve been there, rooted, customized, designed icons and themed. Along with being a part of the JB community for a long time. It was great, but over it. I say own what you want and do with it what you want. But this doesn’t look good to me.
Just buy an Android... Instead of doing this 😅

agreed.
I respect the openness of android but it’s a mess of an Os. I use iPhone primarily simply because it is a refined and controlled experience.
My parents use android and I can’t even easily troubleshoot because the OS are both different versions and different flavors of android so the settings don’t line up
 
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lorkkrue

macrumors newbie
Feb 25, 2008
26
8
I would love it if Apple would just let us place icons wherever we want instead of making them snap to the upper left corner of the screen. 14 operating systems later and we still can’t position icons on the bottom of the screen (easier to reach one-handed) without putting apps above them to push them down.
now you can just put a widget across the top and the icons will move to the bottom 2/3 of the screen. that's what I did for having short fingers. lol
 
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TheSapient

macrumors regular
May 26, 2017
149
141
I don't like MacRumor's design choices here. And that is the whole point. They shouldn't be designing a look to please me. They shouldn't be stuck with some lowest common denominator look that is blandly inoffensive to anyone. They should be creating a design that is aesthetically pleasing and functionally useful for themselves. Who cares if one person, or a million people, on the internet doesn't like it. This update gives them the ability to make something they like for themselves.

Hopefully the next OS version will bring the ability to choose icon packs (and maybe icon scaling and grid sizing).
 
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Bkdodger

macrumors 6502
Jun 6, 2019
340
375
We definitely need more options in the near future .. added a few icons from my Android icon pack but otherwise just keep my screens simple ..
 
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Harvey Zoltan

macrumors member
May 14, 2018
65
105
Brisbane
Now we can all see why Apple doesn’t allow third party watch faces. There is a place for this kind of thing, it’s called Android.
 
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Abazigal

Contributor
Jul 18, 2011
13,533
11,960
Singapore
Man are people so brainwashed by Apple these days that they feel like Apple should restrict and decide every aspect of what we can do with our own devices that we pay money for? If this is the case things really need to change. Mindsets need to change.

I feel it’s a lot more nuanced than that.

Android has had widgets since forever and there has never been any fanfare over, mainly because it was a hot mess without any guidelines or standardisation. Not even from Google who ironically makes better-looking apps for iOS than they do for their own android platform.

Apple’s implementation of widgets looks way better, although it is also far more limiting, and the crowd goes wild because as it turns out, constraints actually help users understand the system better. Which in turn results in more people ending up using them.

Android got the people who want to customize their experience but that was a small market. Apple took 10 years to slowly get the world there, and now gets the credit because they are the ones with the more polished implementation between the two.

Google squandered its massive lead at the start. That’s what it is.
 
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TheSapient

macrumors regular
May 26, 2017
149
141
I feel it’s a lot more nuanced than that.

Android has had widgets since forever and there has never been any fanfare over, mainly because it was a hot mess without any guidelines or standardisation. Not even from Google who ironically makes better-looking apps for iOS than they do for their own android platform.

Apple’s implementation of widgets looks way better, although it is also far more limiting, and the crowd goes wild because as it turns out, constraints actually help users understand the system better. Which in turn results in more people ending up using them.

Android got the people who want to customize their experience but that was a small market. Apple took 10 years to slowly get the world there, and now gets the credit because they are the ones with the more polished implementation between the two.

Google squandered its massive lead at the start. That’s what it is.


There was plenty of fanfare for Android's widgets. It was just more than a decade ago. Most of the world just doesn't think about it much anymore, in the same way we don't think about GPS existing in our phones. We just use the features and assume they are available when we want them.

We haven't been using them for the last 11 years because of some secret plan from Apple to "slowly get the world there". We just all know what they can do, how we want to use them, and how to choose from the massive variety available.

Don't get me wrong. I'm very glad for iPhone users. This is a big step for the OS, and should make their use-flow more efficient/enjoyable. If I were currently using an iPhone, I would definitely be popping widgets on my home screen (even if I could not quite get what I wanted for my needs and wants).
 
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ackmondual

macrumors 65816
Dec 23, 2014
1,109
343
U.S.A., Earth
There was plenty of fanfare for Android's widgets. It was just more than a decade ago. Most of the world just doesn't think about it much anymore, in the same way we don't think about GPS existing in our phones. We just use the features and assume they are available when we want them.

We haven't been using them for the last 11 years because of some secret plan from Apple to "slowly get the world there". We just all know what they can do, how we want to use them, and how to choose from the massive variety available.
When I was deciding whether to go Android or iOS for my first smartphone back in 2011, that is when I noticed the widgets. I didn't need Steve Jobs to go on stage and make the announcement their glitzy way. I read about it online, and that was that. Amongst other reasons, I wanted to try out Android as something new (back then, I was already into the iOS ecosystem via an iPod Touch 3).

I was also amused 7 years back, you all the iPads in the Apple Store are advertised as something like "iPad 3 with wifi". I found it odd they had to include that since you'd figure wifi is as standard as the screen. However, I'm sure they either got asked that a lot, or their marketing knows better, so I digress.

Don't get me wrong. I'm very glad for iPhone users. This is a big step for the OS, and should make their use-flow more efficient/enjoyable. If I were currently using an iPhone, I would definitely be popping widgets on my home screen (even if I could not quite get what I wanted for my needs and wants).
A YouTube video mentioned Apple needs to supplement their income. While they make a lot of money on their hardware, subscription revenue is going to be the way. But you need as large a user base as possible for that, hence fancy features like widgets. They've also been offering low end devices as well like the iPhone SE (mind you, it's Apple, so "low end" is still fairly good).
 
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JGIGS

macrumors 65816
Jan 1, 2008
1,367
1,228
CANADA!
I feel it’s a lot more nuanced than that.

Android has had widgets since forever and there has never been any fanfare over, mainly because it was a hot mess without any guidelines or standardisation. Not even from Google who ironically makes better-looking apps for iOS than they do for their own android platform.

Apple’s implementation of widgets looks way better, although it is also far more limiting, and the crowd goes wild because as it turns out, constraints actually help users understand the system better. Which in turn results in more people ending up using them.

Android got the people who want to customize their experience but that was a small market. Apple took 10 years to slowly get the world there, and now gets the credit because they are the ones with the more polished implementation between the two.

Google squandered its massive lead at the start. That’s what it is.

I'm guessing you never customized an android phone in your life? It could be as simple or complex as you want to make it. Nova launcher which came out in the early days of Android and was great for customizing your Android home screen and installing icon packs. I'm not super techy and had no problems. Apple has made it a cleaner easier experience with widgets but it took way to long and customizing icons is currently a horrible work around with it opening the shortcuts screen before the app opens and still forces icons to arrange top left. Though widget placement does help push them where you want.

I know I and many people went to Android at one time for its customization abilities so it did cost the iphone some market share loss.

Judging by how ios icon packs and screen customizations are currently breaking the internet, I think the "small market" you state, of people that are interested in this type customization, might be a bit bigger than you think. If Apple makes icon customization better/easier I could see some people definitely coming back or even OG Android users giving the iphone a try.
 
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Khaleesi Kendall

macrumors member
Mar 31, 2020
82
66
I feel it’s a lot more nuanced than that.

Android has had widgets since forever and there has never been any fanfare over, mainly because it was a hot mess without any guidelines or standardisation. Not even from Google who ironically makes better-looking apps for iOS than they do for their own android platform.

Apple’s implementation of widgets looks way better, although it is also far more limiting, and the crowd goes wild because as it turns out, constraints actually help users understand the system better. Which in turn results in more people ending up using them.

Android got the people who want to customize their experience but that was a small market. Apple took 10 years to slowly get the world there, and now gets the credit because they are the ones with the more polished implementation between the two.

Google squandered its massive lead at the start. That’s what it is.
I don’t think I ever really used widgets in android. They used way too much power and I have always used the android the way we always did pre iOS 14
 
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