I always do the same thing when I get a new device

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| January 14, 2014

What's the first thing you do when you get a new phone? It isn't like the old days, where all we had to do was make sure our phonebook was up to date (though, that could very well still be a thing some people have to do) between one flip phone to the next. These days, there's a plethora of apps and games we have to download, along with sift through list after list of settings and features to make sure that our phone's set up just the way we want it to be.

Depending on how often you switch devices, this could still be a quick process. The longest part, for me, is just making sure that I've downloaded all the apps and games I want to have. Even then, it usually takes me a few days to remember every single app I had on the device prior. I'll see something that reminds me, usually via Twitter, that I'm missing a particular service on a new phone or tablet.

Most recently, I've started to realize that I basically have a routine for when I get a new device running a particular mobile operating system. It actually never fails. If I pick up an Android device, my routine's different than it is when I get my hands on a handset or tablet running iOS, and the same can be said for when I start using Windows Phone.

Different, and yet it's all meant to reach the same goal: the best user experience.

When I do use Windows Phone, and after I turn it on for the first time, I go through the set up process as usual. After that, the very first thing I do is get rid of the bloatware preloaded on the device. No matter how many apps are already on my handset after I turn it on, they're all going to get deleted long before I start downloading what I want. I do this to clear up space, obviously, but I also do it as some kind of quiet protest.

Stop with the bloatware already!

iOS is a bit different, but only by default. While carriers aren't allowed to put their standard apps and services on the iPhone right out of the box, that doesn't mean that there isn't bloatware. It's just from Apple. Now, I used to use Newsstand quite a bit, but not so much anymore, and I know a lot of people are absolutely thrilled that they can shove that app icon in a folder. Admittedly, I do it now, too. I also shove the Compass app, Videos, iTunes, Voice Memos, Notes, Reminders, Stocks, and Game Center. Oh, and let's not forget the Phone, Contacts, Weather, FaceTime and Calendar icons, too.

Yep. Same deal, every device. Shove those apps into a folder and forget they exist.

Now, Android. This platform may be the reason why I want to switch to unlocked phones in general, but I'm sure it's something that many of you have considered, too. The bloatware situation on carrier-branded devices is pretty out of hand, and since I don't root my phone anymore, I just let those apps wither and fade away in the app drawer. However, I've still got a routine, even for Google's mobile OS.

The very first thing I do is remove all the widgets and app icons. It doesn't matter how many home screens there are, either. I'll remove all the stuff that's already set up, and start completely fresh. I don't use widgets all that much anymore, so I usually just give myself one home screen to work with, and add a few folders with the important categories: games, writing, and news. Simple, and easy to set up.

Falling into a routine with our phones or tablets is just something that happens over time, sometimes forced through habit. For those of us who switch devices often, it become second nature. Something we do without even thinking about. So I'm curious, what kind of habits do you have with your phone? What's something you do practically subconsciously, every time you get a new phone, from platform to platform? Let me know!