Have you wondered how to better organise your devices? A decluttered and visually pleasing screen on the iPad and iPhone will help you focus more on the tasks at hand. I showed a screenshot of my iPad a couple of weeks ago in Instagram Stories, and there was a request for a tutorial. Here is how to use folders, widgets and custom wallpapers!
In This Blog Post
The following is covered in this post:
- How To Use App Folders
- Planning To Organise
- What To Avoid
- How To Create A Folder
- How To Use Widgets For iPhone And iPad
- How To Install A Custom Wallpaper On iPhone And iPad
- Downloading From Reputable Sources Online
- Saving And Storing Wallpaper Images
- Tips For Wallpaper Imagery
- Wrapping Up
1. How To Use App Folders
Before even thinking about folders, remember the precious real estate that is the dock with its prominent location for your most important apps.
1.1 Planning To Organise
Next, organise your apps in folders according to contexts that make sense to you. A good place to start is to think whether splitting them up between work and home will help.
Suitable batches can also be created for different stages of your workflow such as creating content for social media and the platform apps themselves.
The final step of categorising, if you have many apps, is to consider hierarchies: which folders should appear on the first page and which ones will you access through swiping?
1.2 What To Avoid
Key to a nice device is to avoid the phenomenon that is the kitchen junk drawer. A large number of apps without a proper home will give a chaotic vibe, especially so if you have to search for them frequently.
It is also important to steer away from too much swiping, even though it is possible to create pages of apps within folders.
Side note: You could specifically want a second page for apps such as banking or other more sensitive data, if people are frequently hovering nearby.
1.3 How To Create A Folder
Creating app folders works the same on the iPhone and iPad:
- Push on an app icon so that a pop-up window is showing.
- Click “Edit Home Screen” and you should see the apps begin to wiggle back and forth.
- To create a folder, pick one app and drag it above another, hold until a folder is formed.
- If you want to rearrange the order inside the folder, pick the app in question, drag it where you would like for it to be, and release.
- In the upper right corner is a button “Done”, which you will click to stop the wiggling in editing mode.
Inside a folder, to create a second page you must finesse with the icon a bit to understand how it works:
- Enter editing mode as above.
- Hold an app you want to move to a second page, and ever so slightly shift it above the right edge of the folder, but don’t release the app yet.
- Once a new page is formed, move the app back above the folder and release.
I think this used to work a bit differently in older versions of iOS because I still have troubles finding the spots for folder-page creation.
2. How To Use Widgets For iPhone And iPad
Widgets are built-in apps of a small size, typically with one function such as a calendar. On my screen I currently use three; Calendar, Clock and Pinterest:
To me it feels redundant to add the app names underneath the widgets, but hey ho, Apple isn’t always as minimalist as they could.
Enter screen-editing mode next. I created a blank page for a large Pinterest widget:
Click on the + sign in the upper left corner. It will open this pop-up window from which you pick and choose whatever you like:
Just because the main image is a one-day Calendar, doesn’t mean you have to stick with it. I prefer the monthly view to keep better track of time:
The same applies to the Clock. My preference is light and airy:
Next up is the slightly odd-looking Pinterest widget:
On my front page of the iPhone there is a small Pinterest widget of this type, and next to it you have the large option:
Once you click “Add Widget”, the pop-up window is closed and the widget added to the screen. Click “Done” to exit editing mode:
Push the app, hold it in place, and an edit window will pop up. Click “Edit Widget” to start adding details from your Pinterest account:
It is straight-forward to add data. You should be logged into Pinterest for the account name to work, and then pick a board as well as update frequency. My choice is to have one secret board per image and a daily update. This means it doesn’t try to change the image once an hour, which would use battery juices in vain, I suppose. And having just one image per board means the widget looks static. You may want to switch things up!
Here is the widget all done:
You can actually upload your own images to secret boards, if you have something you would find even more inspirational than what is found on Pinterest.
Here is my iPad screen for comparison:
I haven’t updated it to the latest iPadOS yet, so it may very well be that the app names show up annoyingly underneath each widget then.
This is such a fun and simple way to customise your devices to look totally different from the average phone or tablet out there. A bonus is obviously the ways you can ensure you don’t lose track of time, which could be a small disaster in business. The same goes for loved ones’ birthdays and the like!
3. How To Install A Custom Wallpaper On iPhone And iPad
Custom wallpapers are the finishing touch and can help you regulate your mood.
3.1 Downloading From Reputable Sources Online
If you don’t have images of your own to use as wallpapers, there is a plethora of websites with photos you can use for free.
Unsplash is my personal favourite and a place where I can easily lose track of time. Once you have found a photo that you like, click the download button for size options. It may not be necessary to use the original (largest) size at all times.
3.2 Saving And Storing Wallpaper Images
When you download a suitable photo from Unsplash it ends up in Files, which is in the cloud. In order to use it as a wallpaper you must save it to Photos and from there install it.
A nice way to switch between wallpapers is to add the photos to a specific album in the Photos app.
Remember to delete the file in the cloud to avoid duplicates.
3.3 Tips For Wallpaper Imagery
While all sorts of photos and other images can be interesting to audition, remember that a busy-looking choice will make it hard for you to notice the apps.
Making a good choice can also be about sections, namely which portions of a photo are okay to keep busy, and which ones would benefit from an even area. When not quite understanding this in the past I have downloaded photos, noticed they created Gah! moments, and then found something better once I recalled where my apps were located.
Sometimes it is the small things that end up quietly nudging us in a positive direction every day. I enjoy quick tweaks like these with a massive impact without further financial investments needed, and once I have tired of a view, become so used to it that I no longer notice the details, it is time to shake things up!
Tell me, have you customised your devices like this yet? Or will you now that you got nudged?
If you use this tutorial, tag us on Instagram so we can see your creation. You can use our hashtag #wemlaco to add it there as well for others to see!