iPhone OS 4 Christmas Wish List

Merry Christmas everybody!

I’ve been seeing a handful of iPhone OS 4 Christmas Wish Lists floating about today, so I thought I’d post about what I want to see in iPhone OS 4: Simple Springboard. The idea is a version of Springboard with drastically reduced functionality – very much like the Simple Finder on Mac OS X.

Specifically, Simple Springboard would:

  • Be restricted to a set of user-specified apps. All other app icons would not appear at all.
  • Disallow deleting apps – the whole “jiggly apps” mode would not exist at all.
  • It should be relatively easy to switch from the “normal” Springboard to the Simple Springboard – perhaps an app icon.
  • On the other hand, quitting the Simple Springboard should require some complex action, such as entering a user-specified code. If this action starts, but is not completed in a certain (relatively short) period of time, the user should be sent back to the Simple Springboard.

The idea, of course, would be to have an environment that is “safe” for kids. As a parent, I would put in all of the games my son enjoys, such as Toddler Teasers Numbers and Koi Pond. Then I could hand over my iPod without having to worry about him accidentally deleting an app (which has happened) or getting into Contacts and adding a new contact with a gibberish name (also has happened).

There are plenty more things I’d like to see in iPhone OS 4 as a developer, and other developer blogs have covered most of them. But as a parent, this idea is way at the top of the list.