iOS 7 Vs. iOS 6: Comparing The Home Screen & Stock App Icons

A lot has been said about the new design in iOS 7, and it seems that most either love it or hate with many judging by screenshots rather than running on their own iPhone. The one thing that is certain is that you definitely can’t ignore the new design with such a significant change over all of the previous six versions of iOS. Granted, not all of the new iOS 7 icons are the best, but you can identify a style, and see this as a new beginning. Also, this is just beta one of iOS 7, so nothing is set in stone, but it’s worth comparing the iOS 7 home screen, and stock apps icons with those of iOS 6.

The most interesting aspect I have noticed is how cartoonish and poor iOS 6 looks in comparison, when it looked great just a few of days ago. There’s a subdued pop to iOS 7, with a dull pop in iOS 6. I have found that unlocking my device has brought a smile to my face over the past two days with the developer beta on my iPhone. When it comes to design though, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and with that in mind we just wanted to present you with images of the home screen of iOS 7 & iOS 6 side to side for you to decide for yourself.

One final note is how many people are analyzing each app icon individually, when the home screen is always taken as a whole, and taking a step back, everything in iOS 7 fits together, while iOS 6 looks like a hodgepodge on the home screen. Check out the images below like an eye exam asking yourself, “better or worse” when checking the before and after of iOS 7 vs. iOS 6.



*Click either image to see them full size.


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13 Comments on "iOS 7 Vs. iOS 6: Comparing The Home Screen & Stock App Icons"

  1. Brett June 13, 2013 at 11:29 AM -

    “with many judging by screenshots rather than running on their own iPhone.”

    Well unless you have access to a developer beta build that’s the ONLY way most people can pass judgement on iOS 7 until the Fall when it is available to everyone.

    I will admit that some of the new icons do look nice, but the vast majority of them are too bright (really any of the green ones or a few others which literally hurt my eyes to look at) or look a bit too washed out, or are just plain juvenile.

    Unfortunately at this point I really doubt that the icons are something Apple will change before the final release as they are some of the most customer facing aspects and thus prob set in stone. Most of the changes that go on between now and the final release are likely to be things that non-beta testers won’t even have seen.

    Maybe it is a different experience when you actually have it in hand, or maybe it depends on your wallpaper, but looking at the “home screen as a whole” does nothing to improve my opinion of those icons. If anything it makes it even more of a mess, as you now have the “incorrectly sized” icons of third party apps which will need to be redone by devs to fit the new curvature of the iOS 7 icons. Which means we’ll have a lot of really bad looking icons come the Fall (and I’m not just talking about the stock ones).

    Trevor, I think you have a few bits flipped. At least from an icon perspective, there is no way I would ever call iOS 6 cartoonish, that’s a term much better suited for iOS 7’s pastel puke-fest. If anything, the iOS 6 icons only look that much richer, crisper and professionally executed when put side-by side with their ill-formed iOS 7 counterparts.

    At least you got one thing right in this post…iOS 7 IS polarizing. 🙂

  2. Kyle June 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM -

    I really dislike these new icons–they just seem unfinished–like a comic strip if it was missed by the inking team. The older icons look way more professional and polished. And some of them have nothing to do with the app they are meant to represent–how does that new Game Center icon have anything to do with games? Not intuitive at all.

    It’s not just the icons that look horrible for iOS 7–they have extended this ugly, flat, unfinished look to the buttons as well. What once used to be solid or fully-colors intuitive buttons are now replaced with line art that looks like they hired a child to draw.

    I really hope they take the massive outcry into consideration and rethink these horrible UI changes before the final release.

    • Trevor Sheridan June 13, 2013 at 5:22 PM -

      To each their own, but I think Apple has only bee working on the new design for seven months, and this is just beta one. I’m sure it will be refined. This is a new starting point, and not a finalized product. It’s just a glimpse of things to come, now installed on a new product Apple is selling. I think they had to get these ready for WWDC before they were finished, and they will be working right up until September on tweaking the design.

  3. David September 24, 2013 at 9:52 AM -

    Unfortunately the icons didn’t change. I am totally unable to see how the icons “fit” together. Some have gone from being clear and self-explanatory to abstract and irrelevant (Game Center and Reminders being the worst), the Newsstand seems to be contrary to Apple’s own concept.
    Overall I like iOS7 functionality but from a graphic point of view they’ve lost the lead.

    • Trevor Sheridan September 24, 2013 at 10:01 AM -

      Some may be out of place, but I don’t see any other mobile OS that has surpassed them in design quality.

  4. Trina October 27, 2013 at 8:41 PM -

    How can I get my photos to be the same size when I use them for my lock screen or home screen, it will automatically make them bigger when I use them, and it will let me enlarge them, but not make them smaller, and that cuts some of the picture out.

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