How to organize my iPhone

My front page After using my iPhone 3G for some time now, I find my self confused when it comes to organizing all my applications. At first glance the look & and feel of the iPhone was great, but now I tend to think that Apple sure has forgotten something important. When you estimate to sell billions of applications it should be clear that the average user will have a lot of them on their phone, and along comes the issue.

How well is the user interface when the user has 55 apps (as I have at the time this post is written)?. There are some factors to take into account:

  • Native iPhone apps
  • Third party apps
  • Your own apps (could go as third party)
  • Native apps in regular use
  • Third party apps in regular use
  • Third party apps for testing purpose
  • Different categories like games, travel, office etc
  • … (and more)

My experience is that if you put 16 applications in one page it’s a mess everytime you are looking for one; It’s impossible to find it. And if the application is not on the front page… where is it? On page 4…5? By using some of the factores above I have organized my iPhone to some extent, but sure would like to see Apple develop some great and innovative user interface that will work better than it does today.¬†After organizing all my applications I found my self often slide over to the last page. Suddenly I was using the games more regular than first thought. If you know how to move an entire page at a time, please let me know (without using the jailbreaked Categories app). This is actually an extremely time-consuming process.

So, here is how I organized my iPhone:

  1. What I did was to put Native and third party applications that I use often on my front page limiting them to 12.
  2. On my second page I put all the native and third party apps that I use by regular basis.
  3. On my third page is all my applications that supports me when I’m out traveling.
  4. On my forth page is all my games.
  5. On my fifth page I have the applications rarely in use
  6. And the last one is for temporarily testing purpose.

UPDATE:Today I came over this nice post that is digging more into the issues in this post. Also.. 9 pages maximum?? I still have 2 pages until I will have trouble: http://venturebeat.com/2008/12/21/the-need-for-iphone-app-folders-and-search-is-quickly-approaching/

  3 comments for “How to organize my iPhone

  1. AC
    November 6, 2008 at 8:24 am

    I have all 9 pages in use. So I put the most commonly used ones on fifth page. On the left hand side (4 pages) are in the order: commonly used (online) apps, commonly used (offline) apps, less-commonly used apps, test apps. On the right hand side (4 pages) are games in order of ranking. The ones that I play most get closer spots to page 5.

  2. November 6, 2008 at 8:40 am

    Hi AC,
    great strategy. I will try out putting my most used page in the middle.

  3. Jo Jo
    February 22, 2009 at 8:20 am

    ok, i’m a little late to this forum, but here’s what I’ve got. I deleted all the apps off my iPhone. Then I plowed through all my apps in iTunes and deleted all, but 80 of them. When I removed them from iTunes I DID NOT throw them away (more on this later). Then I went to sync Applications in iTunes and chose “Selected Applications” and then checked all 80 apps individually. The result was all the default iPhone apps on page 1, and all 80 other apps in alphabetical order after that. While I prefer to organize by category, it was too difficult. At least this way, I know where to find something.

    So here’s part 2 of my strategy – Go to the Mobile Applications folder in iTunes and drag all the contents to the iTunes icon in the dock (or add all the contents via the menu commands). Now when you go to Applications in iTunes, the 80 apps you picked before will be checked, but not everything else you just re-added. This gives you flexibility in choosing what you want on the phone, while largely keeping the alphabetical structure intact. Granted, when you add a new app, you’ll have to move it into its alphabetical place, but the structure is already there to accommodate you.

    I hope Apple will enable folders soon, so I can categorize by function again. Until then, the alphabetical system will have to work for me.

    Hope this helps, I will post this elsewhere too.

    -Jo Jo

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