My top apps are on my home screen, plus a couple key categorized folders (like Info which has news, weather, movies, and some bookmarks, and Comm which has my IM, videoconferencing and social apps).
For “the rest” (mainly games) I have pages of very organized folders; sometimes two folders for the same category. But I do two things to make it easy to find the right folder:
1. I use emoji to give every folder an icon before the name. Like a movie slate for my Media folder, and a space invader for Retro games.
2. I pick one app as the “poster” app (either the nicest/most distinct icon, or the one I launch the most—which I can change at will). This goes on the left side, followed by three folders. The first folder is the one that icon came from. The other two folders are at least related conceptually.
This way, every page has a distinctive stack of 4 icons on the left, and 12 folders. I can easily know what page I’m on without reading folder names, and I can get to any app quickly. Every page and every folder has a visual identity. And 12 folders fits nearly 150 apps per page, so I don’t have that many pages to flip through. I like this MUCH better than when I used to use more pages and fewer folders.
For instance, one of my screens is:
Doom Resurrection, the "poster" for these 3 folders: 1st Person - 3rd Person - RPG
Then Soosiz, the “poster” for: Platform - Platform - Hook
Then Asphalt 5, the “poster" for: Driving - Flying - Running
Then Galcon, the “poster” for: RT Strategy - Turn Based - Board Games
(This is a little more awkward with iPad, since each page has two arrangements—but I arrange for Portrait mainly.)
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