What's on my Robin? Alastair Edition.
Nextbit Employee Khang
Nextbit Employee
‎04-20-2016 02:53 PM
‎04-20-2016 02:53 PM

As everyone knows, the beauty of Android is the way one can customize their experience to their taste. From the launcher, to the icons, and even to the nitty gritty features (if you’re coding-capable), you can make your phone completely unique and YOURS. I took a look at my Robin today and had the chance to peek at a few others around the office and noticed how different everyone’s setup was. For me, I have a blank homescreen and use gestures on Nova Launcher to get what I need. For others, they prefer a stock Robin experience. I sat down with Alastair, one of our Test Engineers, to go in-depth into his Robin.

 

Here are Alastair’s homescreens:

 

Screenshot_20160420-104037.png  Screenshot_20160420-104029.png 

 

K: Hey buddy, what launcher are you using?

AA: YO, sup Khanger. Nova Launcher, but I use the Nextbit Launcher on my secondary and test devices, of course haha.

 

K: Why do you prefer this setup over our own launcher?

AA: A couple key reasons:

  • I need an app drawer since I have about 170 apps installed + shadow icons. I dislike having to perform more than 3 swipes/actions to launch an app. In this setup, my first tier apps are 0-1 swipe away. For all other apps, I utilize Nova Launcher’s search a la Mac OS Spotlight to launch apps. For example, to launch Pandora, I 1) hit my home button 2) type P and 3) launch Pandora via the search results.

Screenshot_20160420-111542.png

App search toggled by tapping the home button.

 

  • widgets on the home screen: I enjoyed this functionality when I switched from iOS - having weather and my daily agenda always there is very useful for me.
  • customizable layout - having 2 home screens is a pretty hard requirement for me, so I need to pack as many icons as I can while maintaining high usability. I frequently access my phone riding around on my bike and need quick and easy access a few apps - Maps, Soundcloud, Spotify, Messaging.
  • gestures & search - complementary to the above point, I enjoy the ability to bring up app search via the home screen, the ability to pull the notification curtain down by swiping down anywhere on the home screen, etc. These gestures make up for and enable me to have few home screens and less overall visual clutter.

 

K: What widget is that?

AA: It is the Arcus weather widget - providing the 48 hour temperature and precipitation forecast. I ride my bike every day, so knowing what the weather conditions are like is useful - ie. if I wait another 20 minutes, the crazy rain storm will pass and I can ride with slightly less misery.

 

K: What are three apps you use most often?

AA: Relay Pro, Soundcloud, and Instagram. Our Camera app comes in right at #4…

 

K: Can you tell me what icon pack and wallpaper you’re using?

AA: The icon pack is called CandyCons and the wallpaper is from the Murum wallpaper app. Needed a simple dark wallpaper that would blend into the background while making the bright material icons pop.

---

 

What I love about Android is if I’m feeling that my experience is a little stale, I can use a new icon pack, or a new wallpaper, or change up my launcher to make it feel like a completely different phone. Every month, we’ll be checking out a different HQ Rebel’s Robin to show you how we rock our devices. Alastair's a super-busy guy, so huge thanks to him for spending some time to share his Robin with us.

 

If you like Alastair’s setup, you can check out these links:

Murum Wallpaper

CandyCons

Arcus Weather Widget

 

In the comments below, tell us about an app that is a MUST HAVE, and one lucky winner will receive a tempered glass screen protector!

30 Comments
Rebel on the Rise Chacko1
Rebel on the Rise

Awesome stuff @Khang! The community blog is finally growing! Definitely do this for other Nextbit employees! BTW, @alastair awesome layout man, that transparent weather widget with the grey background is awesome!

Good luck to participants in the competition... Well, I'll enter anyway. My pick- Evernote!

Nextbit Product Expert Darragh
Nextbit Product Expert

I must have 5 folders on the bottom of my screen or else my lists wont match up. Same for every device I have owned. Goes 'Social, Chat, Games, Misc , Streaming' in that order! No extra icons on my homescreen and that makes it look nice and clean Smiley Wink

 

@alastair CandyCons are the best btw. Smiley Wink

Nextbit Product Expert david
Nextbit Product Expert

Nice post! And thanks to @alastair

For me, a MUST HAVE is "Todoist" app. I always think about the best ideas when I'm out of home, and my brain tends to forget them, so I'm always writing down the ideas and tasks I need to do. It also has a widget that I love so much! 

Here you have the link: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.todoist

XDeathy
Rebel 3.2

Great post guys and I do love that wallpaper!

 

Let me chip in as I don't have any screen protector. The obvious MUST HAVE for me is "GREENIFY". I mean what's the point of apps that are running in the background eat up my battery, yet I am not currently using it? As such, Greenify will bring me that few extra hours of juice we all desperately need.

 

(and yes Greenify works for non-rooted Robins like mine)

Rebel on the Rise kikemtz
Rebel on the Rise

Great article man, this is what makes Nextbit awesome. Sharing how the staff is using and customizing their Robins, gives us a push to customize our own. I always install NOVA also, my homescreen has to be clean as I rely on gestures. 

shii5
Rebel 2.6

Nice article. It's nice to see what other people do to make their phones their own and unique. An app that I really like and always download is Weather Timeline. I really like the UI of the app, and it's been really useful at being up-to-date with weather information ^^

GNone
Rebel 2.8

NoChromo

Nextbit Product Expert Paradox
Nextbit Product Expert

Oh this is really cool to see what else people have on their phones and discover interesting new apps to try out. Smiley Very Happy

 

I am on the robin's stock launcher as I feel that, without the apps drawer, I learn to keep my phone minimalist, downloading only what I need.

 

For me, my must have is my Yahoo Mail ('else how do i keep track of everything Smiley Tongue). I use it as a personal reminder to send stuff to my work mail to deal with, or ideas i have that i intend to action upon. I know evernote works as well, but unfortunately I am not that disciplined and sending stuff to my work mail ensures i definately action upon them Smiley Tongue

 

My Secondary must haves are my local Bus Schedule App on when the bus' coming (so i can run like a bat outa hell to catch that one said bus Smiley Tongue) and our local tube/metro/train line map as i can never remember where goes what. Oh! and Google maps! All transport related. I'd be lost (literally and figuratively!) without them.

 

My current must have game app is.... *drum roll* Atsume Neko (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=jp.co.hit_point.nekoatsume&hl=en). A totally frivolous game that doesn't take much brain cells or much time and effort Smiley Tongue And the cats are cute. *feels a little ashamed*

 

My newest app (Avaliable in playstore and itunes) is called A Dog's Story (http://www.campaignbrief.com/2016/04/pedigree-launches-a-dogs-story.html)which i happened to see featured in Campaign Brief. I downloaded 2 days back to share with a colleague who has a dog and kids. The app teaches kids how to apporach and treat dogs via a story telling method. Graphics are beautiful and the story is engaging and most importantly teaches kids right pet values. I am not a fan of the pedigree pet food brand for many reasons, but i felt this app is a really good teaching tool for the kids on pets Smiley Happy

 

B-W
Rebel 3.6

 Hey, this is sweet! I'm new to Android, so it's good to see how other's use the OS to make it work for them. Robot Happy

colinburhart
Rebel 3.6

This is a unique, and fun edition to the Rebel Forum.

sextkit
Rebel 3.0

Cool post. For my pick I have to go with Tidal - my mobile network operator includes it in his subscription and I fell in love with some of its features and how smooth it works on my Robin :-)

NIBOR
Rebel 3.2

Hi all,

 

...boring here Smiley Happy ...I use default launcher. It is basic/simple clean, like Robin hardware. I mostly use Chrome app, so maybe I would like to see Nextbit icon look change for Chrome app, to have nice&balanced app drawer. 

 

Rebel on the Rise ellectriknight
Rebel on the Rise

That setup looks AMAZING! Like omg, it's like Heaven. I definitely need to try it out.

 

My necessary app would have to be: Photo Editor (by dev.macgyver)

  • If anyone knows me, I'm a mobile photography enthusiast. I love taking pictures on my smartphone. Most of these pictures are selfies. Since I love Robin's Selfie cam, I'm all in for an app such as Photo Editor.
  • Whether it's selfies or landscape shots. Photo Editor helps correct any errors that Robin didn't pick up when processing a photo. More than likely due to the position I took the shot and the lighting. The Auto-Tone feature is a true helpful effect/feature. Allowing me to have pictures that are accurate to the color accuracy and vibrance that they are in reality.

 

TheAustin
Rebel 2.8

Great post!

 

It's always nice to see all the different ways you can customize! I use Nova as well, but I'm more on the minimalist end of the spectrum.

davidclarke_au
Rebel 3.2
Great thread, looking forward to the next post!
NIBOR
Rebel 3.2

I agree it's nice to see different layouts. I also trust Nexbit to get us the best UI experience. So far I'm really satisfied with it. When some bug fixes will come soon, even better. Please, keep it simple&clean&logic about Robin, I think we don't need another complicated thing in our lives. 

Many kudos to Nextbit!

shimondas
Rebel 3.2

Main HomescreenMain Homescreen2nd screen with Calendar & Events2nd screen with Calendar & Events3rd screen with notes3rd screen with notes

Great post, @Khang! Looking forward to more of such insightful community blog posts!
 
It was really nice to see your homescreen setup, @alastair! That weather widget is very interesting. 👌🏻

 

My homescreen layout is similar and synced across all of the smartphones I own. I prefer arranging all of my apps into neat folders. (Yes, I have folders in the app drawer too!)

 

The MUST HAVE app for me is Twitter.

 

I love how it is instant, dynamic and always on the move. I can tweet from anywhere and at anytime. I can post images, create polls and the best part? The 140 characters limit.

 

This makes sure there's clever and well-thought content up there unlike Facebook where keyboard warriors find themselves at home.  If given a choice to give up all social media and choose just one, I'd definitely go with Twitter! Smiley Very Happy

 

(PS: If I'm chosen as the lucky winner of the tempered glass screen protector, I request you to kindly forward it to someone in need. I would love to see it going to a person who genuinely needs it and would make the best use of it. Smiley Happy )

 

 

 

Nextbit Product Expert Baymax
Nextbit Product Expert

Nice one @Khang!

 

One app that I have come to consider a must have is the XDA Labs app. As an Android developer, it helps me stay up to date with apps that sometimes are not even updated yet in the Play Store. 

nomedent
Rebel 3.2

Yep, I agree with everyone above.  This thread has been very cool to run through. Keep them coming!

 

I will refrain from adding anything from my homescreen because too little time/effort has gone into it. Posts like this will get me where I need to be though. 

Cheeseknlght
Rebel 3.2

I would say a must have is the Spotify (Premium) app, pay a little and get tons of music online and offline (Can back those files up to the cloud, regardless of Nextbit Cloud or other cloud services).

 

That will be truly music on the go, sans removable storage. Smiley Happy

svilasco
Rebel 2.8

Hey Robin Rebels.

I'm so happy with my Robin (Early backer, limited edition in Electric), I learned that each time I switch phone I really re-install the apps that I need on a daily basis. I'm always on social media for trends, and for self-learning. My favourite apps: Spotify, Instagram, WhatsApp, and YouTube. I'm so proud to be part of the Nextbit Robin community, I talk about all the things Robin each time someone ask me about my Robin and its Electric color. (I plan to buy two more Robin: Rebel collection).

 

Cheeseknlght
Rebel 3.2

@svilaco The Nextbit Cloud does help tot backup those apps you have signed into, after the registration to Nextbit Smart Storage is done up. It works just as advertised, a bit of hiccups for me but it sure does get the job done. Smiley Happy

 

Nextbit Employee Khang
Nextbit Employee

Hey everyone, thank you for the comments and app suggestions! Our winner for this contest is @Paradox. Congratulations on winning a Tempered Glass Screen Protector! Smiley Happy Don't be discouraged if you didn't win this time, @_kay_ and I will be holding a bunch of contests, so look out for the next one!

Rebel on the Rise Chacko1
Rebel on the Rise

Congrats @Paradox! Looking forward to new contests @Khang! *Meanwhile internally bleeds with jealousy* 😊 lol jk

Cheeseknlght
Rebel 3.2

Congrats @Paradox for winning the Tempered Glass, 1 Lifeline for accidental drops. Oops.

B-W
Rebel 3.6

Congrats @Paradox!

 

svilasco
Rebel 2.8

 I downloaded the Nova Launcher and it's a bit of a learning curve, but it's still more interesting than a stale iOS layout. I'm enjoying the experience so far. 

svilasco
Rebel 2.8

Hello,

It's just amazing the creative freedom that I get. I'm able to totally rethink how I use my smartphone. The Nova Launcher is a great app. it's like I'm having a fast car and just took a driving course on how to maximize it. Alastair your setup is great. I'm still having issues with that 0-1 swipe concept. My home screen and desktop look differents and I'll get use to it. I didn't clutter it so much, just some drawers, folders, and the search apps. 

I hope I'll hack my work computer the same way (the sad life of a cubicle worker)! Thanks God I rejoice at home with my Graphic Design setup at my house. 

STEFFANO 

svilasco
Rebel 2.8

 

My home screenMy home screen

 

sinzhiwei
Rebel 2.8

My Must Have gotta WhatsApp! cannot live without it!