The home screen is your digital living room

The home screen on your phone says a lot about you. What your values are. Your daily activities, rituals, and habits. It speaks to the space that you enjoy and need, relative to the rest of the world. Your home screen has a function as well as a style. It’s meant for you; it’s meant for showing off to others. In many ways, the home screen is your digital living room.

When I think back to the best living rooms, the ones I’ve spent to most time in, all of them combined the unique personality of the owner with a high degree of usefulness.

Proximity to other rooms was important but more importantly, it was about the space that the living room allowed for.

Recognize that the living room can be used as both a private (sharing intimate moments with a partner) and public (hosting parties with friends) space. Create living room spaces that foster comfort, relaxation, and refuge.

Understand that hosting guests in the living room may include both formal (e.g., entertaining) and intimate (e.g., sharing personal stories) scenarios.

Recognize that objects placed within the living room may create a connection to family, friends, or experiences during moments of solitude.

– Tayla B. Rechavi, A Room for Living: Private and Public Aspects in the Experience of the Living Room

The living room is a space of versatile yet limited use. Where you can read a book alone and stare out the window, watching the world. It’s also where you can share a bottle of wine and some soul talk with your best friends. A place where your kids can pretend that each block in the sofa is a new world for their action figures to play. A place where you can watch your favorite teams rise and fall. A room for good news and bad news. It’s a space for some of the best that life has to offer.

The living room has many uses and purposes but still has its boundaries.

It’s a room designed with elegance. Approachable and classy but not stuffy.

That’s what your home screen should be.

It should afford you versatility, utility, and connection. Your favorite things; your most frequently used apps. Software that represents you belongs there.

Your wallpaper should represent you in some way yet live in the background, giving enough contrast to your apps that they fly towards you, begging to be opened.

Your other screens? They’re for less important actions. Apps you use infrequently or maybe not at all anymore. Things you’re trying out. Secrets. Collections of apps that support other apps.

It should echo how you communicate to the outside world. What mediums do you enjoy? Which don’t you enjoy? What we leave off of our home screens, and out of our living rooms, says just as much about us as what we put in them.

The beauty of the home screen is the beauty of the living room. A blank slate. The space is yours to create. Impossibly easy to change, with endless possibilities, in its purest form, it’s the digital embodiment of you.


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