IconSettings gives you shortcuts to settings on the iPad’s home screen

One of the things that Android widgets and jailbroken iOS devices allow you to do that iOS proper doesn’t is put various controls on your home screen to quickly access commonly used settings. Turns out that there is actually a way to do this on iOS without jailbreaking, and it uses something as simple as homescreen bookmarks. Bookmarks have a lot more power than people think. By embedding code rather than straight up links in bookmarks you can do such things as add pages to various services, search within a page etc. It seems that you can also make the iOS device open various settings panels, simply by using “URL” strings that the iOS interprets as commands to open those panels.

IconSettings is a simple service that gives you these bookmarks complete with icons. Since bookmarks look the same as icons on the iOS home screen, the resulting buttons look like normal apps. Click the Bluetooth icon, and it opens the Bluetooth Settings panel (with a short flash of Safari opening in between, as bookmarks go via the web browser). In other words no direct toggle switches or anything like that, but close enough. All you need to do is to go to the website and follow the instructions. There are two methods, where the easiest can seem a bit scary as it prompts you to install a “profile” and enter your lock code. This is simply a .mobileconfig file, which is a file that can be used by companies who need to set up email etc on devices of people who either can’t do it themselves or don’t have the info, without having to manually do it on each device. If you choose to install single settings icons this method will only help you by making it easy to install and not leave blank pages in Safari when used, while using it to install the “all icons” pack will also give you a way to delete all the icons at once by deleting the profile.

I installed only a single icon on my iPad and a single, different icon on my iPhone. On the iPad, I installed Bluetooth since I often turn it on and off to control that bloody Apple Bluetooth Keyboard’s ability to connect to my iPad when it randomly gets turned on in my bag. On the iPhone I installed the Brightness icon, as I often use that to lower the brightness when I’m in dark places. They have both full icon packs and single icons so you can pick and mix what you want or get all. Naturally you can sort them in folders and do with them as you’d like.

[iPhoneZA via Gizmodo]

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.