Thursday, June 25, 2015

Moving Beyond Apple iPhone's Tap & Hold of an App Icon

I love my iPhone and generally wouldn't change anything about it. However, there is one highly under-utilized feature I would like to see re-purposed.

Tap and hold an icon: It starts to jiggle and you can move it.

It's a neat visual experience and genuinely useful to be able to move icons around. However, here's the deal: I RARELY use it. My iPhone comes with a super convenient action (tap and hold an icon) that I don't use very often. That was the right move (pun intended) when the iPhone launched, but it's time to evolve in the direction of the Mac's icon right click menu.

What if tapping and holding an icon instead...

  • Brought up an app-specific settings menu. Let me quickly change my app settings (like notifications and privacy) and developer specific settings. I don't change these often, but it's a pain to hunt down an app's settings in a long list of apps.
  • Showed my current notifications and/or widgets that are in the main pull down menu.
  • Gave me a option to move the icon which then goes back to the home screen with a jiggly icon like today.
  • Let me read the latest app update notes, read about the developer, view other apps they created, and similar apps I might be interested in.
  • Kind of silly, but it would be cool to choose different icons the developer makes available (maybe for free... maybe as an meta-app purchase).
  • Obviously, an option to open the app.

There you go Apple. Those are some ideas to get you started. Tap and hold (or Force Touch in the likely near future) is a fantastically convenient action which can, and should, be used to do more than move icons around.

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