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Interactive iPod Cover Flow Widgets from Widgetsmith

20th September 2023

Jacob Woolcock


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In this exciting video, I delve into the world of interactive widgets on iOS 17, and it’s an absolute game-changer! Join me as I explore the remarkable functionality of Widgetsmith, unlocking the power of an Interactive iPod Cover Flow right on your iPhone Home Screen. You won’t believe how seamlessly it replicates the classic iPod music interface, including the iconic Cover Flow music picker. Whether you’re an iPod Touch enthusiast or simply looking to enhance your iPhone’s usability, this tutorial is a must-watch.

With the interactive Widgets on iOS 17, your iPhone home screen can do all new things, and one of my favourite things that you can now do involves the Widgetsmith app. That is to bring classic cover flow back to your iPhone home screen. So, in the Widgetsmith app, I’m going to create a new medium-sized Widget. Once you’ve got all of the hundreds of different styles that have been there before, at the top is a new category called ‘Interactive’. From here, there’s an option called ‘Music Collection’, and you’ll see straight away at the top, you’ve got that old iTunes style interface of the sliding album covers.

On the ‘Themes’ option, you can then choose the colour of your Widget. Now, whilst there are dozens of really cool, exciting colours here, I think for me, I like the classic black look that CoverFlow originally had. Next up, we go onto the ‘Music’ tab, and from here, you’re going to add the albums or playlists that show up in this collection. Simply tap on ‘Add Music’, and then choose your playlist or album. From here, I’m going to add a few of my playlists, like the ‘Favourite Mix’ and the ‘Get Up Mix’. So, while I’ve chosen that first one, I’m going to add it, and then I’m going to press the ‘Add Music’ button again to get my second one, and I’m going to repeat this as many times as I like to build out that collection of music.

While I’m going through and adding some more music playlists to this Widget, it might be a good time just to gently nudge you to perhaps consider subscribing to my channel. I’m making loads of iPhone quick tips. I release new ones every week, so if you subscribe, you’re going to get hundreds of cool tips for your iPhone.

Okay, enough of that, let’s go back to our Widget creating. Whilst I do wish you could select more than one at a time, I can understand the limitation here. I’m going to choose half a dozen things that I really like, and then we’ll go on to the ‘Options’ section. From here, you can make a few important changes. For example, you can choose if you want your music to play from the Widgetsmith app or through the Apple Music app. For me, I’m going for the Music app. You can then also choose if you want a reflection underneath the covers and how rounded you want those corners to be. I like the most rounded style personally, but it’s completely up to you. Then when we press ‘Save’, our Widget is created in Widgetsmith, and we can go back to our home screen to add it.

Okay, you know the drill here. We’ll go onto a blank page of our home screen, there’s a nice gap for that Widget. We’re going to tap and hold the background and press the plus button in the top left corner. Then, I’m going to search for Widgetsmith, and I’m going to drag on the medium-sized Widgetsmith Widget, because that’s the size we just created. This will work for small and large as well, but you need to make it in the Widgetsmith app. When that Widget’s on my screen, I’m going to tap on it and press ‘Edit’, and I’m going to choose the name of the Widget I just created, which excitingly I’ve left being called ‘Medium Number One’. Very original. Now that’s been done, I can go back to my home screen, I can come out of jiggle mode, and you can see straight away that beautiful classic iPod Cover Flow screen is there on my home screen.

I can tap on either side to move between the albums, I get that lovely animation effect, and if I tap on the middle of the album, it will start playing automatically, and you can see that in my Now Playing Widget as well. It’s happening in real time. Even when the music is playing, I can then go on my Cover Flow and choose a different playlist by tapping on the side, and then pressing in the middle to select that playlist instead, and you’ll see the Now Playing screen updates immediately. There’s something about this that just adds a lot of fun to my iPhone home screen, and I really love it. So, thank you, Widgetsmith. What a cool addition to iOS 17. And there are dozens and dozens more things that your phone can do now in iOS 17. Check out this playlist on the end screen and find out all about them. And please do subscribe to my channel if you found this video interesting, and if you’d like to learn more about what your iPhone can do.

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