The recent hybrid and telecommuting trend has brought an unpleasant downside to smartphone users.When your phone is cluttered, it can be difficult to access important apps and files, and you can quickly find yourself distracted.
There are better ways to organize your phone and achieve an efficient workflow.Check out these simple tips to give your phone a new look and improve your productivity.
1. Remove non-essential apps from the home screen
The home screen is a useful tool that allows you to access applications faster.But as with most things, moderation is key.A cluttered home screen can quickly become disorganized.Another risk to be aware of is that adding distracting apps to your home screen can increase procrastination and phone addiction.
Placing only necessary apps on your home screen helps focus your attention on what's important and makes apps easier to find.If you are an Android user, there is no need to delete apps one by one.Here’s how to remove multiple apps from your home screen at once:
1. Long press the unwanted app icon.
2. Click Select.
3. Tap all the apps you want to delete.A blue checkmark will appear next to the selected application.
4. Click Delete.
2. Use folders to group similar apps
Another downside to the home screen is its lack of organization.Rather than searching through randomly displayed apps, they are grouped into folders to make finding apps easier.
One of the best ways to categorize apps is by their type, such as social media, entertainment, or tools.You can name the folders and move them like a normal app.Here's how to add a folder on your Android device:
1. Long press on an app to become part of a folder.
2. Hover the icon over another app to add it to the folder.
3. Release the icon to group the apps.
After creating a folder, you can add more apps by clicking the plus button (+) in the expanded folder view.
3. Remove unused apps
Finding apps becomes difficult if your app library is littered with unused apps.Removing them will help you find apps faster and navigate your phone more easily.
If you have a lot of apps installed, it can be difficult and time-consuming to track down the ones you rarely use one by one.The good news is, you can use Files by Google to easily find and remove apps you don't use often.
From the app's home page, tap the "Cleanup" tab in the bottom navigation bar.Scroll down the page and you'll see an option called "Delete unused apps."Here, you can choose which apps you don’t use frequently to delete.
If you're an iOS user, you can see when an app was last used by navigating to Settings > General > iPhone Storage.Then you can uninstall apps you don't use frequently to reclaim storage space on your iPhone.
Download: Files by Google for Android (free)
4. Clean up phone storage space
If you're running low on storage space on your device, it can be cumbersome to manage and slow down your device.Cleaning your phone's storage regularly is a healthy practice to prevent your device from receiving low-storage threat messages.
Some phones have a storage cleaner built into the settings app.However, for best results, we recommend using Files By Google for a thorough storage cleanup.Just head to the "Cleanup" tab to sort through junk files, old screenshots and downloads, and other space-hogging junk.
You can categorize unnecessary items at once to help you process your data.For personal files like videos and photos, Files by Google gives you manual options to prevent deletion of important files.
iOS doesn't have a built-in feature for cleaning junk files, but you can use other tips and tricks to free up storage space on your iPhone.
5. Add an in-app shortcut on the home screen
Many popular apps now have shortcuts that link to in-app functions.You can pin these shortcuts to your home screen for quicker access to specific functions.
To see a shortcut to an Android app, long press the app on the Home screen.Next, long-press to select the shortcut you want, and move it somewhere on your home screen.Tapping a shortcut will navigate directly to that app's functionality.
You can also use the Shortcuts app on your iPhone to achieve the same effect.This is most helpful for apps you use frequently.Instead of navigating to a specific feature every time you open the app, you can save time by using pinned shortcuts.
6. Remove app icon badge
When using your phone at work, the last thing you need is a badge reminding you that you have thousands of unread emails.Worst of all, these badges may creep onto other apps like YouTube and Twitter.You can easily remove these badges to protect your productivity.
On Android, go into the Settings app and navigate to Notifications > Advanced settings.Here, disable the toggle called "App Icon Badge" to remove badge notifications.
7. Disable notifications from intrusive apps
Mobile push notifications are one of the biggest hazards to productivity.You can't control when you get these notifications, which can be distracting if you're stuck at work.And, if you don't deal with them right away, they'll just show up on your notification panel, distracting you until you deal with them.
To facilitate your workflow while working digitally, you can disable notifications from the most distracting apps.Some apps provide the option to disable notifications in settings.However, to keep your approach consistent, you can disable in-app notifications in your device settings:
1. Navigate to Settings > Apps.
2. Select an app from the list and tap "Notifications".
3. Disable the toggle named "Allow notifications".
If you want to limit certain types of notifications but not others, you can scroll down to the bottom to an option called "Notification Categories" to customize the types of notifications you receive.This menu lets you choose which in-app categories you receive notifications from, and which notifications you mute.
More or less the same level of customization is available on the iPhone.You can customize or disable iPhone notifications in Settings.
Use these tips to make working with your smartphone easier
Smartphones are inherently distracting.But with a few simple changes, you can protect your productivity and greatly benefit your workflow.Having a clean digital space is just as beneficial as a clean work environment.Don't let clutter habits ruin your productivity -- use these tips to make your smartphone easier to use and better for work.
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