Sunday, 23 December 2007

What are iPhone's three missing icons?

At the bottom-left of every iPhone screen, there's an intriguing black space... Space for three more icons. What will Apple put there? We're likely to find out soon, because Apple have uncharacteristically pre-announced the launch of their iPhone SDK, due in February 2008.
In the meantime, geeks the world over (like myself), can't help speculating about the final three icons. My guess is that they'll be:
  • Finder - a file browser and 3rd party application launcher, baring little resemblance to its big brother on the Mac
  • Games - an application launcher for games (both by Apple and 3rd parties)
  • Dashboard - I can't help but suspect there will be two frameworks - a Dashboard Widget framework, which is open to any and all web developers to produce free mini-apps using HTML/CSS/JavaScript, plus a full SDK for a select group of game and application developers, selling exclusively via the iTunes Store
By adding these three icons to the home screen, Apple could massively increase the scope of their UI, without making the home screen any more complex or cluttered. Whilst they could always make the home screen scroll, or provide a filter menu (as per my previous post), I'm starting to doubt that this is a good approach - it's just not simple or elegant.
By introducing Finder, Games & Dashboard, all 3rd party apps could be 1 extra click away, whilst preserving the simplicity of the home screen for iPhone's core applications.
By the way, just for fun, there's one other prediction in this wireframe. Can you spot it?


  1. clock tells time or the janky wifi logo (wimax?)

  2. Is your extra prediction that the clock icon matches the time of day?

  3. That wasn't it - but I like that idea :)

  4. The iChat icon at the top left. As I read somewhere else, "The iPhone already has iChat - dial the number and chat with the person on the other end."