I have a great idea to make widgets work!

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by sportsfrk214, Feb 16, 2011.

  1. sportsfrk214 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 18, 2007
    At least, I think it's a great idea. Many people want widgets on the home screen. Apple does not. It's not hard to see why. Apple is all about clean simple design, and their grid of icons on the home screen is just that. Adding widgets would mess up that cleanliness in their minds, and god forbid the location of those widgets be customizable! But I think I found a way to make widgets work.

    It's simple. For all Apple apps that could have widgets (Weather, Stocks, etc.), you would have two options in settings to choose from. One would be to have apps launch as normal. A second option would be my idea for widgets. When you click the app's icon, a window slides down exactly in the same way it does when you open a folder. However, instead of showing more apps in that space, like a folder does, you'd have your widget. It would have basic information, and a button to press if you wanted to launch the full app. To exit the widget, you tap the icon again or you tap somewhere else on the screen, just like with folders.

    Obviously the biggest issue would be some people would want pressing the icon to open a widget, and others would want it to just launch the app. That's why I said there should be an option in settings to choose. And if you go with the widget option, there will be a button in the widget to open the app.

    I think this is a good compromise. I don't think Apple wants to go with full on widgets, but I think they want a home screen to offer more information. This would allow people to access basic information in apps without having to leave their homescreen. Obviously its not a 100% true widget, because you still have to tap a button to see the information, but I think this is a very workable compromise and quite frankly, I think it would look great. I would very much appreciate being able to tap the Weather icon and have a folder-like window slide down showing me the high and low for the next few days without launching the app, and then tapping the icon again to exit the widget.

    Oh and one other small note: opening a widget would not put the app in your multitasking tray.
  2. kicko macrumors 65816

    Aug 26, 2008
    widgets work very well with icons/shortcuts on android. At the least if Apple implemented something with widgets they could do a toggle between dashboard and home screens. With your idea its still opening and loading data, IMO thats hardly worth the effort when it takes the same time and effort.
  3. xavierpunkreno macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2010
    Or the widgets could just go in the wasted spotlight empty space, but I have a feeling that's where the notification list will go when the revamp that system.
  4. Tarzanman macrumors 65816

    Jul 16, 2010
    Apple doesn't want widgets because it will hurt battery life.

    They don't currently have a dozen different products to offer customers. They only have ONE, so they have to make sure they cater to the features that most of their customers prefer.

    Maybe 15% of iPhone owners would like widgets, while probably 90% of them would prefer better battery life.

    Simple logic, and probably also the reason they won't add flash.
  5. kre62 macrumors 68020

    Jul 12, 2010
    I think Apple should implement a dashboard that you can use a pinch motion to activate. It would then overlay similar to OSX over what you were doing, with weather, stocks, etc, that update only when you activate the dashboard.
  6. Norouzi macrumors 6502

    Aug 6, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA
    I just switched to the iPhone from Android and I have to say I never really used widgets. The only one I did use and kind of miss was the weather widget on my homescreen.

    If apple does add widgets though, this is how I'd like to see it done. I'm a big fan of Dashboard on my Macs at home and work. Only have the widgets use resources when you actually want them, not all the time.
  7. kicko macrumors 65816

    Aug 26, 2008
    thats what i was saying.

    @tarzanman What would be difference if you had apps running in the background or a widget? and not all widgets are using data and updating. Something like a contact list or even if it did you data you can click on the widget to refresh it when you want instead of background running. I'm not sure why everyone thinks widgets are battery suckers. Too much of anything is bad.
  8. kre62 macrumors 68020

    Jul 12, 2010
    Glad we're on the same page.
  9. Mjmar macrumors 65816

    May 20, 2008
    How about they use the space above the multitasking bar for widgets. Makes sense.
  10. kicko macrumors 65816

    Aug 26, 2008
  11. chembox macrumors 6502a

    Feb 17, 2010
    Just like multitasking would "hurt battery life"? Apple will eventually find a workaround for this.
  12. LSUtigers03 macrumors 68020


    Apr 9, 2008
    Just because the option is there doesn't mean you have to use it. Those who want to use it can and those who don't won't have to then everyone's happy. Apple uses battery life as an excuse for not giving people what they want. If battery life was the most important thing then no one would have an iPhone or an Android phone. We would all rock dumb phones that last for days.
  13. boca76 macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    I think that the Dashboard solution is not good because widgets should be on all the time.
    If somebody is concerned about battery life he can switch off the widgets or set the refresh rate to a few hours.
    The implementation could be very simple if the widgets would have a fixed size of 1,2,4 or 8 app icons and they could be moved around like apps.
    I like the idea of widgets a lot and would use a few of them ( weather, stocks, currency converter).
  14. TheyCallMeSaint macrumors regular

    Oct 17, 2010
    Count me in the 5% overlap that want both widgets and battery life! :D
  15. Tarzanman macrumors 65816

    Jul 16, 2010
  16. bigred7078 macrumors 6502a


    May 6, 2010
    You could always jailbreak and get lockinfo. Works great for me.

  17. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    Apple is all about simplicity.
    Before iPhone, most phones went through this sequence: press button > unlock screen > main screen > click menu > go to program

    With iPhone: press button > unlock screen > menu > go to program

    Essentially, they merged the unlock and main screen of phones into the unlock screen which takes you directly to the menu (home screen).

    Android kind of did a hybrid of this (since unlocking the phone doesn't take you directly to the menu) but it worked out for the most part.

    I'm interested to see what Apple will do in iOS5.
  18. zirconiawoods macrumors newbie

    Feb 14, 2011
  19. VulchR macrumors 68020


    Jun 8, 2009
    No doubt Apple wants to control the aesthetics of widgets. One solution to prevent the kind of user-interface free-for-all that Apple wants to avoid is to provide a HomePage app, for which developers can create plug-ins. Those that want widgets could leave the app running, those that don't could simply ignore it.

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