Lock screen launchers for iOS have become quite common among the jailbreak community in the past year or so. Tweaks like BuddyLock and AnyLock are just two of the many examples of releases that allow iOS users to make the most of their lock screen. While lock screen launchers have a certain usefulness of their own, some might argue that if a launcher is too feature-rich, it ends up killing the whole purpose of the lock screen. AppBox is an upcoming Cydia tweak that might have finally struck just the right balance between being simple and useful. It allows you to place a handful of app shortcuts on the iPhone lock screen, but that’s not where it stops. The tweak is a platform for third-party lock screen app-specific widgets, which can be used to perform a lot of actions without unlocking your device. With AppBox, it becomes possible to compose texts, post to Facebook, create notes, and do much more. The possibilities are virtually limitless, since other developers can come up with AppBox plugins for different apps.
As you would expect, AppBox has to be configured from its own Settings menu. To choose the apps you want to place on your lock screen, hit the second option in the tweak’s menu. Depending upon the grid size and layout, you choose in the ‘App Views’ section of AppBox, any number of apps can be chosen for placement. Some stock apps like Music, Notes, Phone, Messages, etc. are enabled by default, and most of them come integrated with their corresponding plugins. Before we dive into all that though, let’s discuss some of the other features offered in the AppBox Settings menu. The tweak is capable of dismissing notifications whenever you tap them instead of sliding. It is also possible to toggle off items like camera grabber, NC grabber, CC grabber and the unlocking text to make the lock screen more suited for AppBox’s hidden app grid.
To view the list of apps placed by AppBox on the lock screen, swipe to the left from the right edge of the screen. Simply tapping the icons launches their respective apps, but if you want to access the plugins, long-press the app shortcut of your choice. Each plugin is unique, and matches the purpose of the app to which it belongs. Some of the apps that come with default plugins include Notes (write a short note and save it to the app), Phone (access your entire address book or favorites from the lock screen) and Social (post Twitter and Facebook updates quickly).
Once AppBox gains popularity, and we start seeing more plugins coming out for it, this handy tweak is bound to become even more useful. Before that though, you’ll have to wait for AppBox to get officially released in the Cydia store, where it is expected to arrive next week as a $0.99 download.