My New Favourite App - Launch Center Pro

Launch Center Pro

I'm way late to the party on this one (it was released in 2012), but it's still a good recommendation anyway. I first heard of Launch Center Pro recently when there was some hype around the launch of the iPad version of the app. I then downloaded the iPhone version and started playing around with it for the last week or so. It's awesome! It's basically app that allows you to create shortcuts to other apps and actions to save time and finger taps. By installing the app, moving it to my main home screen and creating shortcuts, I've been able to move a bunch of other apps to other pages and hide them in folders to keep myself organized. It's also freed up some prime real estate on my first home screen for the apps I use the most.

Here's the hierarchy of how I organize my apps on my iPhone:

1) Most used apps on my first home screen. Phone app, messages app, maps, camera, email, Safari, etc. This allows your most used apps to be only a single tap away. No folders on my first home screen because an app in a folder requires 2 taps (or more if it's on page 2 of the folder) to open. 

2) Launch Center Pro on first home screen. Previously I would have just kept going with my methodology above and moved on to home screen 2 with my next level of apps and so on. After home screen 2 or 3 I start putting seldom used apps in folders, so that I don't have 5 or 6 screens of apps. I might even have had some folders on home screen 2. But now, with Launch Center Pro, I can access even more of my apps from my first home screen. Basically, you open LCP, and then tap on an app or action to launch it. So, now you can launch an app that's on your 3rd screen with 2 taps instead of 3 (or more if it was in a folder). Also, you can launch an app and have it perform an action right away to save even more time. You can set up an action to phone your best friend or spouse right from LCP in 2 taps. Currently, to phone someone you would have to open the phone app, tap to get to the contacts or dialer or favourites tab, then tap on the contact/favourite. That's 3 taps instead of 2. Same thing for iMessages, you can jump right into a message to a frequent contact by setting up an action and save a few taps by having to open iMessages, scroll to the right conversation, etc.

3) Back to arranging apps by frequency of use. LCP can help you create shortcuts to several apps, actions and groups of apps and actions. It's quite powerful and time saving, but then at some point you get back to the old strategy of descending order of use. 

Launch Center Pro is $4.99 in the App Store and I think it's well worth it. You might think I'm being kind of nitpicky about saving a tap here and a tap there, but it all adds up. LCP has been great for me and might work for you too. 

Here are a couple of reviews of LCP:

Macworld, Macstories