A basement for apps

Listening to a podcast talk about how we are conditioned to pick up our phone too often, I had an idea to try with the apps on my phone; or iPhone, in my case.

The experiment consisted on moving the apps that ‘pull me in’ (i.e. the apps that ‘use me’) to a second, less visible, page and leave on the first page the apps that ‘I use’.

Below is my phone before the re-org.

Before – 5 pages of apps, various app folders.

Here is the phone after.

After. Page 1 and Page 2.
After. Page 3 and beyond. The ‘basement’.

What happened

I counted about 130 apps installed. After removing all the app folders, I organized the apps in 3 categories.

Page 1 – Apps ‘I use’

On the first page I put any app I could honestly say I use ‘all the time’ and does not belong to the second category. (See below.)

Page 2 – Apps that ‘use me’

On the second page I put all the apps that want my attention. Email, Slack, etc. These are the apps with red badge indicators that change often.

Page 3 and beyond – App Basement

Everything else ended up haphazardly in pages 3 to 7. I did not put any effort to create a logical arrangement. Search suffices to find them.

You may notice I still left 3 apps on the dock bar at the bottom. These technically belong to page 2. May be later I will try to move them there. I just could not make myself be that spartan, yet.


I updated the iPhone notifications for apps in page 2 to minimize (but not remove) banners and repeated alerts.

Does it work?

Early to say, but 24 hours into the experiment my phone feels… ‘quieter’. In a month or two I should report where this experiment ended up.