iOS 16 is rumoured to give your iPhone's Home screen a major upgrade

The InfoShack is a little place where widgets get together, and it could be in iOS 16

Widgets in iOS 16
(Image credit: Future)

It's always nice to have a juicy iOS rumour, and this one's a doozy: Apple is reportedly working on an interactive widget system codenamed InfoShack for the version of iOS that'll ship with the iPhone 14. Unfortunately there are apparently multiple versions of it in development so it's not clear which, if any, of the leaks we've seen so far resemble the finished feature. But there's enough here to be interesting, not least because it looks like Apple is borrowing from Android.

Why interactive widgets are a great idea

We were hoping for interactive widgets in iOS 15, but they didn't make the cut. And that's a shame, because interactive widgets are wonderful things: I used loads of them back when OS X had Dashboard, which brought interactive widgets to the Mac back in 2011 before they were unceremoniously shuffled into the Notifications Centre instead.

The problem with iOS 15's widgets is they don't do anything: they're just links to apps, albeit very pretty ones. So my weather widget doesn't switch views, my Omnifocus widget doesn't enable me to change Perspectives or dates, and so on. Even something as simple as an interactive Calculator widget would be handy, saving me an unlock and a swipe when I'm working out a tip.

According to LeaksApplePro there is still a great deal of work to be done before these widgets are ready for prime time, but I really hope they make it into the final iOS 16 release: with the iPhone in particular, it's often the little things that make the biggest difference to your day-to-day life.

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written thirteen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote another seven books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com).