1. Sanjay Chandra's Avatar
    This guide focuses on organizing the start screen especially for people who are new to Windows Phone platform

    Part 1 : Setting Up Start Screen

    1.Selecting the Apps for Start screen :
    Best way to do this is , Start off with a blank screen with no tiles except "Me Tile".Go right and look at the apps you have installed.Look at each app , one by one and think about how often you use them.If u feel an app is important , Pin it to start screen (Don't change its size or modify it , Just leave it there and go back to the app list).Once you have pinned all the apps you selected , its time to go to the next step.

    2.Tile inside another Tile :
    Now look at each tile you have on the start screen.Some apps need more than one tile.I will give an example to this.
    For example : I have people tile on my start screen but i felt that i want to have 2 more tiles , one for my family , another for my best friends and third tile is just people tile.So I will create those those groups and pin them to start.(Don't change tile sizes or modify them , Just pin and leave them there)
    Another example : I have Internet explorer tile , but i felt that i want to go to certain websites very fast , So I pinned 3 of my favorite websites to start screen.

    So once you did this for all apps , Go to next step.


    3.Deleting the Clutter :
    After you Created more than one tile for an app , Sometimes you don't need the app itself.Unpin such tiles you no longer need.
    Example :I pinned 'stocks' app but created another tile for a specific company for which I was tracking price of shares , but felt that I no longer need that app on start screen because the company tile is enough for me.So i will unpin that stocks app itself leaving out company tile.


    4.Choosing An Effective Size for Each Tile :
    The main reason to choose the Tile size is to improve the speed of operation.If you choose correct size for each tile , You get maximum information by spending less time glancing at the screen.
    There are three main Tile sizes for WP8 as we all know.

    This is how i felt about each tile size :
    --1.Small tiles :
    A)You want to launch the app quickly but You thought that it doesn't provide you much "useful" information with bigger live tile.
    B)Stuff with no Live tiles like webpage tiles , game tiles , video tiles etc.
    C)Apps like Settings , Calculator , Flashlight , IE etc. (i.e apps with no Live tiles)

    --2.Medium tiles :
    A)Tiles which give small but yet significant info.
    Example : Weather , Stocks , Battery etc.
    B)Live apps with "less significance"
    Example : Apps like Soundhound , Wikipedia etc have live tile of your history searches and favourites but they don't provide any latest info but visually appealing (imho , these tiles will be better with small tile size unless you want wow factor)
    C)People , Groups , Rooms , Individual persons etc.

    --3.Large Tiles :
    A)Tiles which give maximum information about near future/past other than present (except news apps) :
    Examples : Mail , SMS , Calendar etc.
    B)People , Groups , Rooms , Individual persons etc.
    C)Me Tile , Specific Social Network You use the most etc.

    But It really depends on ur choice which tile sizes you want for each tile.

    Examples on how I chose different sizes for 3 different tiles :
    - At one point , I wanted to choose correct tile size for "battery".So i kept medium tile because battery info is small but significant .Front side of tile gave me battery % and back side the tile gave me how much time remaining until battery drains.But i realized that back side info of the tile is really useless for me , So i ended up choosing small size for battery tile and saved up space for 3 more small tiles.

    - My Family tile is medium but friends tile is large because I get more updates from friends than family , Large tile makes it easy to read things by having less number of lines , So i chose different sizes for each tile , even though both tiles are important to me.

    I hope these examples helped.

    Part 2 : Organizing Start Screen

    1.Understand how you will hold your phone :
    First thing to know , is how you hold your phone in most of the situations.Organizing the phone depends on the size of your hands , left/right handed operation and screen size with respect to your holding pattern and hand size.Before Proceeding to next phase.Once make sure you are aware of these things.Even though it sounds very silly and dumb , it plays very important role in organizing the start screen.

    2.Prioritizing Tiles :
    First , select the tiles you need the most and bring them to top.Size of the tiles doesn't matter really , Just bring every tile you felt were important .Since you already assigned size to each tile in one of the previous steps, there is no much work left here.
    Next , Bring out the least used tiles to the bottom.
    This leaves , most needed/used tiles at top and least used tiles at bottom , which automatically leaves out remaining tiles in the middle.

    3.Left Handed/Right Handed Operation And Holding Pattern :
    I use my phone with left hand mostly , but When I see too many updates or too much usage needed , I shift my phone to right hand or use it landscape with both hands.For staring/to glance screen I use left hand but for using the device , I use right hand.So basically My operation is "right handed".

    My holding pattern allows me to reach the screen upto top left corner (right hand) easily but I find it difficult to tap tile at bottom right though.

    4.Choosing Small and Medium Tiles between Right or Left :
    Large tiles cover up from left to right , So clicking them is easy but small tiles and medium tiles are not like that.

    Most important part of the start screen is the top portion which is like the "1st page of a book" which is ready as soon as you unlock the screen.Since you already kept "most needed" tiles at top (in step 2) , its easy to give position to these tiles.

    Organize the Top portion :
    Right handed :
    Keep Small tiles on left side as much as possible , Medium tiles are fine in middle or completely left as far as they are on top position but keep least used tiles in bottom right** because right hand can't reach to bottom right much easily

    Left handed :
    Keep Small tiles on right side as much as possible , Medium tiles are fine in middle or completely right as far as they are on top position but keep least used tiles in bottom left** because right hand can't reach to bottom right much easily

    **Imagine the top portion of Start screen as a single page of the book and feel that there is no bottom portion of screen to scroll and organize tiles within that limited portion


    5.Thumb area covering your phone's screen :

    Each WP can accommodate 4 small tiles from left to right :
    I name them like this for better understanding :
    Left corner Position - Left Center Position - Right Center Position - Right Corner Position

    ****Hands are quite small compared to screen :
    Keep small tiles in left center or right center positions as much as possible but not in right corner or left corner positions.


    ****Hands are Big :
    Right Handed :
    Don't put tiles on right corners because it is difficult for thumb to reach it , Only organize them on Left corner position or left center position as much as possible.

    Left Handed :
    Don't put tiles on left corners because it is difficult for thumb to reach it , Only organize them on Right corner position or right center position as much as possible

    Organize Remaining portion of screen :
    This really depends on how much you scroll each time because top portion of start screen comes default by unlocking screen but remaining portion is not quite the same but you can follow this way partially**** (read above)

    6.Choose Accent Color
    That's it.


    Part 3 : Additional Reads

    1.Kid's Corner

    If you have no use for Kid's Corner , I Recommend you to read this :
    Alternate uses of Kid's Corner (Google search)

    2.Shortcut Settings

    This is for users who are new to WP , You can pin settings (Bluetooth , Wifi etc.) to start screen and a small google search can give you more information.
    Try "Shortcut connectivity for WP" in google search
    Last edited by Sanjay Chandra; 03-03-2013 at 02:44 AM. Reason: Corrected some tiny mistakes
    zokstar, aximtreo, jfa1 and 3 others like this.
    03-02-2013 11:39 PM
  2. rajkumr's Avatar
    Nice info! Thanks a lot for taking the time to post it.
    03-03-2013 12:35 AM
  3. zokstar's Avatar
    nice well done!
    03-03-2013 01:45 AM
  4. irvin792's Avatar
    Nice!
    03-03-2013 02:06 AM
  5. Sanjay Chandra's Avatar
    03-06-2013 06:32 AM
  6. korbenn's Avatar
    And there's still no way to organize the long list of apps into a folder that would contain the less needed apps?
    04-03-2015 06:49 AM

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