Customize iPhone Without Jailbreaking

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Depending on the keyboard you choose, you may or may not want to enable full access. Full access provides the developer with every keystroke you make. I enabled this with Gboard, however, I’m weary of enabling this with other third-party keyboards. I’m not worried about what the developer will do with my personal information. My concern is that their data stores could be hacked.

You can enable full access by tapping Settings > General > Keyboard > Keyboards, then tap on the custom keyboard. Next, turn on Allow Full Access and confirm.

Add Widgets to iOS

Widgets are a feature that have taken on a life of their own. Because Apple didn’t feel they were a top priority, fanboys of competing operating systems lorded it over Apple users. Little did they know that I’ve had access to widgets on my Mac before smartphones even existed. Of course, people who refuse to use a Mac aren’t aware that OS X had widgets long before any other consumer-oriented operating system.

I really don’t think widgets are a big deal. They make more sense for devices that launch apps slowly. Launching an app on iOS is fast and easy. I would much rather launch an app than see a scaled down representation of an app.

Adding widgets to your Home screen is easy. Widgets accompany apps when you download them from the App Store. There’s no way to download just a widget and not the accompanying app. So you don’t need to launch the App Store to install a widget. Simply swipe right on the first Home screen, and you will see your widgets. Scroll down to the bottom and tap the Edit button. From the Edit screen, you can rearrange or delete existing widgets and add new ones. It’s really no big deal.

Fanboys of competing mobile operating systems will argue that these aren’t real widgets, because they are restricted to a rounded rectangle. This comes off as a bit desperate to “win the Internet”. I never cared for widgets on my Mac. I don’t care for them on my iPhone. I’m satisfied that Apple had their priorities straight and focused on multimedia performance and stability over UI glitter. They knew, from their Mac experience, that users don’t really care about widgets.

Widgets are low hanging fruit. Apple did the hard work of creating an operating system and APIs that allow for apps that aren’t even available on other mobile operating systems, particularly professional music creation apps. Games are much smoother on iOS than any other mobile operating system. Most reasonable people accept Apple’s development priorities.

Apple Will Gradually Improve Customization

History has shown that Apple is slowly introducing new options for customization. It’s clear that this is not a top priority. I feel that Apple has their priorities straight. After all, would you rather have slow, unresponsive multimedia apps or UI glitter?

I have to admit, the iOS user experience has become a bit stale. Every few years, it undergoes a major overhaul. iOS 7 was the last major change to the look and feel of iOS. Like every major Apple change, it was met with hostility on social media and the Internet. Apple will most likely avoid major UI overhauls. Instead, they will make small, incremental changes. Expect to see mote customization options in future versions of iOS.

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