It’s about time Apple made our Home screens more useful. It could start by taking tips from this iOS 11 concept, which imagines more informative icon badges and support for complications similar to those on Apple Watch.
Apple has introduced features like 3D Touch and the Today view to make the Home screen somewhat more practical, but it has changed very little since the original iPhone made its debut in 2007. Calls for widgets and live icons have fallen on deaf ears in Cupertino.
But fans continue to imagine what could be.
This iOS 11 concept from Matt Birchler features “advanced notification badges” that offer more than just a number. They show you who wants your attention with apps like Snapchat, and how many messages are waiting for you with apps like Slack.
What’s more, those icons can finally be placed wherever you want them — like on Android — without the need for a jailbreak tweak.
And if advanced notifications badges aren’t enough, this concept offers Home screen complications and widgets that display useful snippets of information, like top stories in Apple News, and the latest details on your upcoming flight.
“In this mockup, complications would be configured just how they are on the Apple Watch, and you would be able to choose between having 3 small complications, or one large (wide) complication on the top of your home screen,” explains Birchler.
“These all have realtime data that’s relevant to me, and this would go a long way to making the home screen more than just a simple app launcher.”
The concept also imagines “Siri 2.0,” a new interface for Apple’s virtual assistant that combines app suggestions with information updates when you need them most (like those offered by Google Now), and the ability to chat with Siri by text.
“I would expect and hope that Apple has a more dramatic change planned for the home screen down the line, but given what they have now, everything I have mentioned feels like a natural evolution of what they have already done,” Birchler continues.
“I don’t imagine this is exactly what Apple has in the labs right now, but I do really hope they are on a similar page. The iOS home screen needs to grow up.”
We couldn’t agree more. But is Apple listening?