Sunday, December 22, 2013

Clean Up Your Smartphone


I've been bedridden for almost a week now. I've caught the flu and have been enjoying all the wonderful trimmings that come along with it, like incessant coughing and fatigue. During this time, I have hardly touched my phone but when I finally did, I had a billion missed called and messages. This made me think- how unorganized are our phones exactly?                                                                                      

Smartphones are, of course, equipped with smart organizational capabilities. Apple, for example, has folders in which you can group like applications. There are slots for most used applications on the dock. You can rearrange the spatial organization of your applications and folders. I am sure most smartphones have similar capabilities, which allow its user to organize their device to their organizational needs and preferences. I am also sure there are some annoying limitations, but at least there is a way to make sense of all the electronic mess that you see everyday on your device. This is how I would suggest you tackle organizing your device:

1. Uninstalled/delete all applications that you do not use. Really evaluate your applications. If you have three web browsers, is there a reason why you keep three? Do they all provide something the others don't have? Is one the clear winner? The fewer apps I have, especially fun ones, the less time I spend wasting on my phone because I have no discipline and can't possibly control how much time I spend on the apps I enjoy. 

2. Group like applications together in folders. You might have categories such as: games, productivity, reference, navigation, news, photo/video, social networking, utilities, lifestyle, finance, entertainment, books, education, etc. Toss similar apps in one folder and actually label it. Some phones are so smart that they label the folder for you depending on the contents of the folder. Neat, right?!

3. Save your device's contents on your computer. Back up, ladies and gents!

4. Organize your folders/apps in an order that makes sense with the frequency of their use. I use my iPlan calendar everyday, this is why it is the lone app on the home screen. Applications that you use frequently should be on the first page while all other apps and folders that are not used often should be stored in a secondary spot, perhaps another page so they are out of your immediate view but still accessible. 

Home screen on my phone.
Simple- just how I like it.
I have one folder, entitled iPhone Apps,
which houses the majority of my applications.
The shot you see above is the first "page" of the
folder, which are applications I use frequently.
The remainder of the "pages" in this folder
are filled with iPhone factory applications
that cannot be deleted. 

Other tips:

1. Regularly backup your photos/other documents and delete them from your phone. 
2. Merge your contacts and delete duplicates. (I might do a post on how I organize all my contacts, regardless of where their information is stored.)
3. If your device comes with a removable SD Card, only try to keep photos and documents on the SD card. 

What does your home screen look like? Let's do a "what's on my phone" tag- show me your home screens. :) 


  1. Some of us still have the iPhone 3S and its Byzantine software. No folders for me!

    1. Sorry that you have old technology, but you can still organize. If you have screens, you can organize in clusters on each screen. :) Whoop, whoop!