The webOS Wish List: Badged icon notifications | webOS Nation

The webOS Wish List: Badged icon notifications 18

by Derek Kessler Tue, 29 Jan 2013 6:50 pm EST

The webOS Wish List: Badged icon notifications

A strong part of the foundational awesomeness of webOS is the notification system. Early on it consisted of a notifications bar that would pop up at the bottom of the screen on our Pre and Pixi smartphones and open to a full actionable dashboard with individually-dismissable notifications. With webOS 3.0 on the TouchPad the notifications were moved to a slot in the top bar (no sense in taking up the entire bottom on a screen as big as the one on the TouchPad) and gained the ability to triage through multiple notifications from one app.

The only problem with the system (there are ways it can be improved, mind you, but this is more of an "it really should work like this" than "I wish it would do this") was that once you had dismissed a notification, there was no record it was ever there. The slip of a clumsy thumb and *poof*, it's gone, never to be seen again. Or your phone is restarted - something that's not entirely uncommon with webOS - and again, your notifications are gone. There's no way to get around the desire to say "I'll get back to that later, go away," because if you swipe it away, there's no longer a reminder that you need to take care of it.

A huge problem? Not necessarily, but an annoyance nonetheless, and occasionally a frustrating case of "I'm sorry, I missed that *grumblestupidphonegrumble*". There was a period of time where I used Preset Reset to reboot my Pre every night for stability, until I became too annoyed by the fact that notifications of emails or Twitter mentions or the like were gone come morning (I had it set to reboot the phone at 4 am - it's very rare I was still awake at that hour).

The solution? Badged app icons in the launcher. Yes, I'm proposing directly ripping off iOS here. webOS already has badging built in, at least in a sense - expanded dashboard notification icons get badged with numbers all the time. But the app icon itself? Nope. In practice, it'd be a relatively simple affair, enabled through each app's settings. Show notification icon badge? Yes/No. I'd also suggest the ability to select a color for badging; I'd prefer badging on my missed phone calls/voicemails and alerts from Calendar be more attention-grabbing than, say, how many unread stories I have in my news reader.

Have your own thoughts on this or any other webOS Wish List entry? We'd be disappointed if you didn't. That's why we have the comments, it's your place to say how incredibly right (or horribly wrong) we are, plus there's a poll! And we have little doubt you have your own ideas as to what ought be on the webOS wish list, and so there's a forum thread just for that where awesome webOS dreaming is the order of the day.


Not too happy with that, unless it can be switched off. I'm using my own carefully designed custom icons and these would suffer esthetically...

Paragraph 4: "In practice, it'd be a relatively simple affair, enabled through each app's settings. Show notification icon badge? Yes/No."

You're right, I've "read" the article too quickly...(and would have deleted the comment if it was possible) :S

Not a bad idea but then you'd be swiping across and scrolling down every page to see what unread new info you received. Unless all your apps with notifications were on one page.

I would prefer keeping the notifications where they are and have them survive a reboot. But then there's still the accidental swipe, unless the top notification requires a confirmation to delete.

p.s. I'm assuming someone Photoshops the graphics for the WishList entries - probably Derek. Always impressive mock-ups.

This wouldn't replace the notification bar, it'd be a supplement.

Yep, that's Derek!

I assume you'll have the most important badged apps in your launcher anyway. It'll be more like iOS. And if palm had finished their multi tier launcher, when you are touch on the icon you get a list with the items waiting on you or even triage a la TP so you can swipe them away;-)

This would actually be pretty easy for an app to add this functionality. It's a shame no one has done it yet though... :/

Bills Vs Income and Today's Tasks for webOS phones does this...

Normally I don't have problem with it, but should be great to have a supplement like that.

Good point Derek!

I had to look at the picture to work out what you meant by 'badged'.

Yes, I get this. I have also swiped things away when busy, then realised I'd forgotten what it was and there's no way to get it back.

However, this idea means flicking through all the app pages and selecting each app to find out what's happening. you have to take time out to do this and it's kind of unstructured.

I don't know how webOS works, but let's say there's a 'notification service' that polls or is accessed by apps when a message arrives or a reminder is due, etc.

The service displays the notification and allows you to dismiss or expand it and tap on it to bring up the app.

I think that the ideal solution is... (drum roll please!)

1. Each notification can be 'snoozed'. Sliding the snooze button up the screen increments a counter on it. Release to set the snooze period. It will pop up again at that time.

2. Sliding the notification off the screen reveals the usual delete button. Pressing delete is self explanatory, but cancelling or ignoring this panel for a set time (10secs?) causes the notification to be saved.

3. Whenever a notification appears, expanding it also shows an icon for 'saved notifications'. Tapping on this brings up the notification dashboard of old notifications. This list will include the notification you just launched it from.

4. The 'notification service' also has an icon in the launcher. It's the one stop shop for all the saved notifications (basically, the dashboard) and here you can set options for the range of snooze times.

So, I thinks that enables snoozing, dismissing with delete or save (save being automatic) and a single place to find the notifications and launch the associated apps. I suppose you could badge that (like the calendar icon) with the total number of notifications - so you'll know there's something to check.

Any good?

They say:
What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.

Which translated to mobile OS language would be:
What doesn't limit you... that's all about webOS my friend! ;-)

+1 and I love it

also a fan of it being a turn on/off feature, i personally hate it on the ipad3, makes the icons look an untidy mess imho.

id rather just have a static small transparent colored glow under the icon just like the glow we get on the app launches underneath the app icon.

I like the idea alot especially for those times you swipe and forget or phone restarts, my only problem, i may find annoying would be when i get notifications from say facebook, twitter or my various reminders from calendars or banks through SMS.

i dont always open them to read them, cause preview usually gives me all the info i need most of the time, so i just swipe away, with that said, i will always have some number on the badge, again dont know how annoying i would find this or not since its not implemented, but something i would would have to weigh wether to enable or not in messaging, same thing would apply to email i guess.

hmmm, or would just opening that app clear out the current number count?....not sure how it works in iOS...ive switched to Galaxy Nexus on Sprint and in the messaging app(sms/mms) though no badge number there is a number count for unread messages when its opened.

I say steal any good idea from any OS that's out there since we've been robbed by RIM with our whole OS.

I miss the days when weatherIcon actually updated it's icon...


I do not like those badges in the launcher, I would prefer a single place where all notifications can be looked up again and again and again. Something similar to BB10 message hub or how ever they call it, but for all kinds of notifications, messages etc.

A possibility would be placing all those notifications in the just type result area as long as you did not type anything. If you type, you get the result, if you don't type you just get your current notification history. I think that would be awesome. :)