The webOS Wish List: Badged icon notifications | webOS Nation

The webOS Wish List: Badged icon notifications

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.