Do You Want Your iPhone to Look Like a Windows Phone or BlackBerry?

Our sibling sites, WMExperts and have both, coincidentally, just put up posts that show how to make your Windows Phone or BlackBerry "slide to unlock" just exactly like the iPhone. This may be nothing new, as themes and indeed the ability to theme other platforms is almost as longstanding as it is popular in some circles. iPhone Jailbreakers can even get in on the action with WinterBoard. But here's the thing, if you're running a Windows Phone or a BlackBerry, why would you want it to look or behave more like an iPhone? (and yes, the same holds true if you hack your iPhone to look/act like something else).

Do you love the iPhone UI but need functionality it doesn't offer? Are you locked to a non-iPhone carrier and can't get the iPhone, so will make do with a skin until your contract expires? Do you just love to be able to configure your phone, your way, and change it up as the mood strikes you?

Personally, I re-install and restore stuff so often, I've just gotten used to leaving almost everything I can in its default look and with its default settings, so I'm curious as to how the other side rolls.

Those of you with iPhones, any desire to skin it up like a WinPho or a BBerry? Maybe a Palm Pre? (Have you already?) And to those rocking other smartphones and going for an iPhone-look, how's it working for you?

Have something to say about this story? Leave a comment! Need help with something else? Ask in our forums!

Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Do You Want Your iPhone to Look Like a Windows Phone or BlackBerry?


For me a whole different look is not needed on the iPhone. what I would like.. is the storms keyboard skin. For some reason I just really like the way it looks. I wish the keyboard on the iPhone wasn't a dull gray that it is; I guess i just like higher contrast, like when the keyboard comes up asking for your itunes password, its a little darker and looks better.

@iPhone Boston If you are jailbroken, there is a theme you can apply with Winterboard that will skin the keyboard to look identical to the Storm's.

I like the general look and style of the iphone's ui although I wouldn't mind folders so I can tidy up some of my apps.
And I'd prefer it if Notes and the, soon to be released, Voice Memo app were combined to save some space.

I had a blackjack 2 with 6.1 for a very short while. Even though I loved the new UI , I still envied the UI of the iPhone.
I don't know about 6.5 , I would have to see it for my self but even then I don't think I would change it.

For me, the "Slide to unlock" is one feature of the iPhone I would like to disable. it's a pain, as my iPhone is not typically in a situation where it will be turned on accidentally.

I really like that blackberry look on the i-phone and sometimes doing something like that is fairly unique around friends who aren't internet geeks, but its a tad bit awkward to do it.

If I wanted my iPhone to look like WinMo or BB then there is a pretty easy solution to that problem, by a WinMo or BB device. I think just speaks that WinMo and BB users are super jealous but will never admit it or that they secretly DO with they had iPhones instead.

I had winterboard and tried out the BB themes and a cool alien battery screen but winterboard slowed my phone down too much. It is cool to theme but not at the expense of my games.

I'd like the ability to customize it, but I understand why Apple keeps it simple, b/c if you want only one button on a phone then it might make sense to not offer too much customization

The one thing I really would like is a native thing like intelliscreen. Being reminded of sms's, email, and my calendar when I unlock the device is very useful. Oddly enough, I never really used the Today screen for anything on my Windows Mobile phone.... I usually had something like MobileShell installed and used that instead! Now that I have an iPhone, I want a Today screen. :P
I'd also like a shortcut to a connection manager in the native OS, so I don't have to jailbreak to get it.

Some of us want it all. We want the beautiful and intuitive GUI of the iPhone, but we also want a fully functional smart phone. Even when iPhone 3 comes out this summer, it will still only do about 80% of the things that BlackBerry, WinMo, and Palm could do 5 years ago.

If I woke up and my iPhone looked like Windows Mobile - I'd bin it, and go and buy an iPhone :/

I just switched to the iPhone 2 1/2 weeks ago after years of running Windows Mobile. I'm about through with it. The only thing I miss about Windows Mobile is a centralized Today screen where I can get a glance of everything going on all at once. I wouldn't even need a Today screen, just an app that shows me all my status indicators (email, text, calls, voicemail, appointments, tasks, etc).
I tried to make my last two WinMo devices look like an iPhone, but both had square screens and none of the iPhone skins worked right on them. Plus, they made an unstable device more unstable.
I'm running an iPhone skin on my work-issued BlackBerry 7130e. I like the way it looks better than the BlackBerry themes I could find.
I know the iPhone is missing a few things found in other smartphones, but to be honest, I don't miss them much. I just like not having to reboot it all the time like my Samsung Epix. I also like that none of the features on the phone feel like an afterthought. Everything is pretty well designed.

"But here’s the thing, if you’re running a Windows Phone or a BlackBerry, why would you want it to look or behave more like an iPhone?"
Look: Because Apple is good at making things look pretty.
Behave: I don't.
Disclosure: I run a BlackBerry Storm. Though I actually have moved beyond the point of wanting it to look like an iPhone now, because I realized I can make it look like OS X instead, which is even prettier.

Actually I would be interested in a Touch FLO theme for my 3G. There's been a couple of efforts but they are incomplete and no work being done on them.

Wished apple would just have given users of the iPhone the ability to change the look freely without having to jailbreak it. I'm with Crack and have my phone looking like OS X which to me is better than the stale standard look. How many users have different cases for their iPhone? Well, just like changing cases depending on how u feel, I like to change the look of the iPhone UI.

my blackberry 8830 looks like a Blackberry 8830...........and I'm STOKED that it does.(i-phone is a wank:)

Apple doesn't want people having their own themes because they don't want their product looking like ghetto trash cr@p to others who may be thinking of buying. It's modern and sleek the way it is. Why do people want their icons hidden within busy grass backgrounds and photos of their children spitting up? :roll: