How To Turn Your Old iPhone Into A Cute Minimalistic Feature Phone

Talyor Shomaker/Wikimedia

If you still own an iPhone 4, chances are it's sitting in a drawer somewhere gathering dust. You've probably thought about throwing it out, but now there's finally something useful you can do with your old smartphone instead: turn it into a feature phone.

That's what one Reddit user did before sharing a picture of their simplified iPhone 4. After the photo shot up to the front page of Reddit, they offered a full step-by-step guide, which involves jailbreaking the phone, redesigning the home screen, and disabling a ton of software features.

It takes a little work to setup, but it's the perfect solution if you need a basic backup phone or you have a grandparent who's uncomfortable with technology but wants to stay in touch.

The basic idea here is to remove everything non-essential from the iPhone 4. That includes iMessage, the App Store, all games, GPS, background refresh, backup, contacts sync and your Apple ID account. The only apps left on your phone should be the dialler, messages, calendar, clock, memo, reminders, calculator, camera, photos, music, settings and Safari.

The guide notes that the device is running iOS 7.1.2, but it should work on newer software too. Just don't bother updating your iPhone 4 if you're dusting it off for the first time in a few years.

You'll also need to go into your phone's settings and make a ton of tweaks. The guide recommends disabling background refresh, location services, iMessage, Spotlight Search and most notifications. You'll probably also want to switch off Javascript in Safari -- unless your favourite websites use javascript.

Finally, you'll need to jailbreak your iPhone 4 and install some unofficial apps from Cydia (basically the app store for jailbroken phones).

The two most important apps to grab are HomescreenDesigner and Springtomize 3, which will let you simplify the home screen to a grid of six big icons. You'll also want a handful of other smaller modifications to tweak Apple's software.

For the full step-by-step guide you can head to Reddit. Just set aside a couple of hours if you want to make it through the entire setup process in one go.


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