Hello again! Up next for ‘Phone Home’ is Bill Kinney. I met Bill via Twitter many moons ago, and I’ve very much enjoyed chatting about the various nerdy facets of life, especially technology and apps, both online and in person. He’s a great guy, and I’m happy to share his homescreen with you here.
Enjoy! – Kyle
What’s your deal?
I’m in my mid 30’s with two young children. I work for a large financial services company and my wife runs an in-home daycare. I use my phone primarily for personal purposes, though I’m awaiting the rollout of BYOD for work and will get hooked up when it’s available to me.
- Model: iPhone 5
- HD Size: 32 GB
- Wireless Carrier: AT&T
Do you have a philosophy behind the apps that you use, or the place/order that they exist on your phone?
I try to keep as many commonly used apps on my home screen as possible. I don’t do the blank row on the bottom like some do, I want as much as possible crammed in. I have a row of folders where I stash my navigation/transit, weather (currently 11 apps!), utilities, and phone-related apps.
What app/s do you use the most? Are there any that you could not live without?
Whatever Twitter app I happen to be using is probably the top used app – it’s currently Twitteriffic but I’m awaiting the Tweetbot iOS 7 release to see if I’m going to switch back. SimpleNote is my text capture tool of choice. I’ve tried a lot of Dropbox based solutions but don’t find them to be as elegant as SimpleNote’s proprietary platform. I use Safari and Mail on my phone all the time, especially around the house-since I rarely ever fire up the iPad or a laptop anymore.
I take a lot of pictures and I haven’t owned a point-and-shoot camera for 3 or 4 years. I’ve used various third party camera apps but right now I’m using the default iOS camera app most of the time. I also use Habit List to try and build some good habits and remember to do regular items, and I’ve just started using Begin as a simple To-Do list to track immediate things that need to get done in my personal life.
MyFitnessPal has been valuable as I try to lose additional weight for recording my weight and tracking the foods that I eat. On the audio side of things, I use Rdio for music, and I listen to a lot of podcasts on Downcast and audiobooks from the library on the Overdrive app. I’m a huge RSS user as well, and Reeder has always been parked on my home screen to use with my back-end RSS service of choice. It’s always good when you have a few minutes to kill while waiting for something.
As far as apps I could not live without, while I don’t use them as frequently as some of the apps mentioned above, I’d probably say Google Maps, the Phone and Messaging. I have grown more reliant on navigation apps over the years than I’d care to admit, and I still use my device as a phone more than some of my friends.
How many apps do you have installed on your phone?
189 That’s pretty crazy considering I just deleted a whole bunch of them recently.
Do you change your home screen layout often?
I’m constantly rotating things in and out as I use them. I find myself wishing Apple had a tool to see how often you use apps to be informed when choosing the optimal layout. But if I find myself not using something despite its prime real-estate, it will get demoted to the second page or a folder.
Tell me about your home screen wallpaper. How about the lock screen wallpaper?
My home screen wallpaper is a blurred dark red background. I blurred it for iOS 7, but otherwise, it’s the same background I’ve had for over a year. I’ve never been a fan of photos on a home screen. I find them too distracting. I’ve always gone for a dark background with good contrast. I’ve tried others but I always end up back on the current choice (red is my favorite color). My lock screen is currently a picture of my two girls, and it’s usually a picture of them or of the family. I rotate it every few months.
How are your other screens organized?
I have a second screen of less commonly used apps or new apps I’m trying out, and a third screen with folders arranged in alphabetical order for everything else. I find that if they end up in a folder, I forget about them, and don’t use them, even if they would provide some value. I’ve considered putting everything in one folder since you can do that in iOS 7 (and I usually use Spotlight to launch most apps that aren’t on my homescreen anyway).