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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How Do I Set or Change the Default Home Screen?

When the phone has two applications that do the same thing, Android wants to know which app should be used. For example, if two or more home screens are installed, pressing the Home button makes Android display a list of available home screens and prompts users to select one. Likewise, users who select the Email option from Contacts are prompted to choose between the stock email app and K-9 Mail, if the latter has been installed from the Market. Users can select the app they want to use this time, or they can select the one they want to use all the time.

This post describes how to tell the phone which of two or more applications to use for a particular task. The steps here describe how to set the default home screen, but the procedure is the same for setting the default email reader, web browser, Twitter client, and so on.

Setting the Default Home Screen from the Android System Screen

Once the Eyes-Free Shell is installed, pressing Home brings up the Android System screen, which allows users to select between the Stock Home screen and the Eyes-Free Shell. It also gives users the option to set the default setting.
1. If necessary, slide the physical keyboard out to access the arrow keys.
2. Briefly press the Home button. The phone may say, "Android system."
3. Navigate through the items on the screen: Eyes-Free, Home, and Use by Default for This Action.
4. Press the selector on Use by Default for This Action.
5. Set your default home screen.
a. If you want your default to be the Eyes-Free shell, arrow to Eyes-Free shell and press the selector.
b. If you want your default to be the stock Home screen, arrow to Home and press the selector
6. Briefly press the Home button to move to the home screen you have selected.

Clearing the Default Home Screen in Settings

If pressing the Home button opens a particular screen, then that home screen has already been set as the default. To set a different default, users must clear the current one. When they do, they can access the Android system screen and follow the steps described above to choose a new default home screen.

1. From the Home screen, go to Settings.
a. On the stock Launcher, press Menu, navigate to Settings, and press the selector.
b. On the Eyes-Free shell, down-stroke to Applications, type S, navigate to Settings if necessary, and press enter.
2. Navigate to Applications and press the selector.
3. Navigate to Manage Applications and press the selector.
4. Focus is on Downloads. At this point, you can arrow down through your installed applications or arrow right to All applications.
a. If your current default is the stock Home screen and you want to change it to Eyes-Free shell, arrow right to All; then arrow down to your Home screen, which may be called "Home" or "Launcher"; Press the selector.
b. If your current default is the Eyes-Free shell and you want to change it to the stock Launcher, Arrow down to Eyes-Free shell, and press the selector.
5. Navigate to Clear Defaults, and press the selector there. This screen is a nonuniform grid, so you may need to navigate in different directions.
6. Briefly press the Home button. Focus should move to the Android System screen, allowing you to use the previous instructions to set your preferred Home screen.

Clearing the Default Home Screen in the Eyes-Free Shell

The Eyes-Free Shell offers a convenient way to clear defaults for most apps on the phone. The stock home screen isn't one of them, so for that app specifically, users need to follow the steps described in the previous section. For most other cases (e.g., setting the default email reader or web browser), the following method is very handy.

1. Go to the Eyes-Free Shell.
a. If the Eyes-Free Shell is your default home screen, press the Home button.
b. If the stock Home screen is your default launcher, press the Home button, Navigate to and press the selector on All Applications, then on Eyes-Free Shell.
2. Down-stroke to the 8 position for Applications.
3. Navigate to the app that is currently the default. Do not press enter.
4. Press the Menu button.
5. Navigate to and press the selector on Details.
6. Navigate to Clear Defaults, and press the selector there. This screen is a nonuniform grid, so you may need to navigate in different directions.

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