I use the Google Nexus One running Android 2.2 as my primary personal cell phone, and as you may know, the Android home screens can display wallpapers, widgets, icons, and folders. I thought I would share a screen shot of the main home screen on my Nexus One and provide an overview of what is on it for two reasons. One is that it enables you to have a better understanding of how I use my phone, and second is that it might provide you with an idea of how you can customize your own phone.
The wallpaper that you see in the screen shot is a picture that I took of the Mackinac Bridge at sunset. I use Wallpaper Rotator, which is a free app, to change the wallpaper on my phone every six hours. I could have the wallpaper changed more frequently, but I have settled on a six hour rotation and that seems to work the best.
Now, let’s go around the home screen counterclockwise, starting in the upper left-hand corner. First I have the Android Calendar widget that comes by default on every Android phone. The calendar widget might be a bit too large for many but I think the larger size makes it easier to read. The widget displays the current date and right below it my next appointment. Tap the calendar widget to start the calendar app. Next is the Evernote icon and below that is the icon to Dialer One, which is an alternate dialer for Android phones. Dialer One provides a smart dial feature similar to what is available on Windows Mobile phones. With Dialer One’s smart dial I can simply tap the dial pad numbers that have the letters of the contact I want to dial and it filters the contacts list with those letters.
Next is the icon to Handcent, which is a text messaging app that supports threaded text messages that looks like the iPhone messaging app. Next to Handcent is the Contacts and Gmail icons. Above the Gmail icon are two icons that display my e-mail that have specific tags. The one tag icon labeled Important displays all of my e-mail that were assigned the Important tag by Google’s Priority Inbox. The tag icon labeled ToDo displays all of my e-mail that I have assigned the ToDo tag, which I manually assign to e-mails that I need to follow-up on. You can create your own icons for Gmail labels by pressing and holding on the home screen, select Shortcuts and then select Gmail label.
In the upper right-hand corner of my home screen is the Weather Channel widget. The Weather Channel app includes three widgets and the one you see here is the small widget, which displays the current temperature and weather graphic for my current location. Tap the Weather Channel widget to open the Weather Channel app. Finally to the left is the Battery Left widget which shows the current time when the battery will run out, along with the percentage of battery left as a graphic and number.
There you have it, rundown of what is on my main home screen. Because this is the screen that you see the most often when starting the phone, what it displays is the most important information and the icons to my most important apps on my phone. Of course, there are five home screens on the Nexus One and all of them have additional icons that I consider secondary to what is on the main home screen. In future posts I will share what I have on my secondary home screens.