For a long time now I've kept my iPhone setup largely the same. Just two rows of apps on the home screen with other apps on the following screens. I've had it this way for over a year now, but recently I've changed this setup.

More Screen, More Apps

With a larger screen on my iPhone 6, I've started adding more apps to the home screen. I started adding a third row of apps. Then a week later I added another row of apps. The following week after that I added another row.

Screenshot of my home screen

There was two reasons I kept just eight apps on my screen in the past.

  1. I like using photos of my family on my phone and so keeping the number of apps to eight means I have more screen to use a nice photo.
  2. I kept the number of apps down to the ones I used on a daily basis. At the time I also had an iPad, so I didn't need as many apps on my phone.

Things have changed though. I no longer use an iPad. The iPhone 6 screen is big enough to do most tasks I throw at it with the sole exception being programming. This means I do use my phone alot more. The tade-off of using my phone alot more rather than using two seperate devices is well worth it.

Also, I just set a nice picture of the family on the lock screen and reserve the wallpaper on the home screen for a different image from Unsplash. These two changes mean that I am free to use more apps on my home screen.

No More Folders

Another change to my previous setup is the abolishment of folders to group apps. In the past I used a verb based grouping for apps to keep related tasks together. It was fine for a while but I found that even by using the verb based folders, I wasn't gaining anything other than keeping the screen organised. I was also allowing myself to hoard apps. Even the apps that I used infrequently I kept on my phone in a folder. I didn't have a need for these apps, I simply kept them there, "just in case".

Now I simply keep a couple of subsequent screens with apps on them. My second home screen is largely apps I've installed for use every other day like banking, health tracking, server management and games for the kids (and me!).The third home screen is all Apple's own apps that I don't use often or at all. It's still annoying that you can't delete apps like Notes, Voice Memos and Tips, but with them being on the last screen I rarely see them.

One Last Thing

One last change that I have been making in terms of app usage is I've started to use web based services instead of apps which is why I have a Feedbin icon on my home screen. Previously I've used Reeder and Unread for scanning through my RSS feeds, but Feedbin has such a great user-interface for the phone that it makes more sense to use Feedbin with it's sharing feature available on my iPhone rather than adding another app layer between myself and the Feedbin service. This doesn't work for all services, but where a web based client has been designed with a phone in mind, it can be just as easy to use the web based client rather than an app to connect to your service in question.

That just about covers my iPhone setup. Tools have definitely changed since the last time I wrote about this. I might delve into these apps more in the future and my reasons for choosing them but for the foreseeable future this is what I'm sticking with.