Lifehacker reader crstemple designed his new home screen around Ice Cream Sandwich and Google’s new, great-looking product icons. Here’s how he put it together.
While my previous LauncherPro, Mac-centric home screen had unfathomable functionality, it lacked centralisation, unity and “smoothness”. Additionally — and feel free to call me an old man — I also have come to the realisation that I don’t always need ALL TEH INFORMATIONS NOW RIGHT NOW, and I’m perfectly comfortable making a few clicks to and from the home screen to get to where I want to go. Especially if it means that I gawk at a gorgeous home screen all the while.
With that in mind, I think I’ve finally settled on something that I feel simultaneously suits my day-to-day needs, as well as my love for seamless, unified design. And specifically, my admiration of both the ICS look and the relatively recently redesigned Google Products icons.
- ADW for my launcher. Not that LauncherPro couldn’t have gotten the job done just as well, though. I’ve personally found that ADW has more of the minuscule little tweaking capabilities that I prefer.
- Ice Cream Sandwich Launcher Theme by kovdev, for the Google Products icons. This also comes with the expected, Nexus ICS icons as well, if that’s more your flavour. Also provides ICS dock appearance-manipulation for those on ADW.
- SwitchPro Widgets for my 4G, Wi-Fi, Brightness and Flashlight toggle controls on the second screen. In all of the incarnations of my phone, this is the single widget set that has never left my home screen.
- Fancy Widgets for my current weather and five-day forecast (using the “Sammy” theme). I’ve actually found that I like having to click the icons access animation and forecast, though the widget does indeed support text for temperatures dates.
- The “Air Stream” wallpaper, found right damn here on Lifehacker!
Now, if you’re running off to download ICS Theme to get all of the icons you see here, you’re going to be disappointed. The Google Product icons that come with the theme, you have to remember, were originally designed for the Chrome OS homepage and the short-lived Google drop-down menu, not for smartphone usage. So, while most of the icons you’ll need are present, you’re going to be left high and dry on a few important ones like a Calculator, Clock and social networking icons (minus G+, of course).
Well I wasn’t about to have another jumbled mess of icon variances on my screen again, so I decided to be proactive and made a few of ’em myself in Photoshop. You guys are more than welcome to snatch ’em up for yourself to help complete your collections. Here are my icons for Facebook, Calculator, Temple Run and Twitter (and another one for Twicca, specifically — which you should totally be using!). I’m also using this Clock icon found on VeryIcon.
Even at that, you can see that I made a few… fibs, when it came to assigning appropriate icons. The Camera icon is really Instagram; the Cloud Storage icon, Any.do; and the Blogs icon is actually Draw Something. I could fairly easily make more custom icons to suit these apps better, but these current icons get the job done well enough for me.
With this layout, I finally feel like my phone is less of a utilitarian tool and more like the shiny new toy it was when I first held it – without sacrificing any of the familiarity and functionality that I’ve come to know and love.