iOS comes with a pretty straightforward and easy to use multitasking system – an App Switcher, which is invoked by pressing the home button twice or if you use Activator instead, a different method. The App Switcher in all of its easy to use glory, sacrifices functionality to stay simplistic. iOS developer Akhil Tolani
has decided to make a new multitasking solution dubbed Imperium
with even more options and functionality built into it than the multitasking App Switcher. As illustrated by the screenshots above, you can see just how much more useful this new tweak will be.
In a way, Imperium is similar to one of Akhil Tolani’s pervious tweaks, which was named SuperSwitcher
in the attempt to make the multitasking App Switcher more functional. The big difference between Imperium and SuperSwitcher is SuperSwitcher required you to use the App Switcher to activate it, while Imperium can be activated from anywhere using an Acitvator action. Additionally, Imperium has a few bonus features.
Imperium includes not only a new multitasking interface, but it also includes toggles for Bluetooth, airplane mode, Wi-Fi, location services, and even a switch for a flashlight. Additionally below that are shortcuts for composing a Tweet, snapping a quick photograph, performing a quick Google search, composing an e-mail, showing song lyrics, and a button which brings up a prompt for respringing, rebooting, powering off, and finally entering safe mode. There are also two sliders – one for increasing or decreasing brightness and one for increasing or decreasing volume.
There is an additional window with a list of every application on your iDevice so you can quickly launch any application you want to. The list goes in alphabetical order, so if you know what you’re looking for you know where to scroll. In this very same window are four application shortcuts, which you pick from the Imperium preferences pane in the Settings application, which is shown in the screenshot below:
The preferences pane not only allows you to pick your four application shortcuts, but also your Activator action method. You can also adjust how dark the background is, the blur radius, and the animation speed for the background of Imperium. At the very bottom is a switch, which allows you to enable double-tap to close out of Imperium. Usually, you can just press the home button to exit Imperium, so whichever exit method is easier or more convenient for you can be used.
Taking Imperium for a spin for ourselves, we can’t find any reasons not to recommend it. It’s a convenient dash, however the only thing we could find a way to be picky about it is with the graphics. The close circles appearing on the applications in the backgrounded apps window are slightly choppy and the animations for some of the features are not very fluid. The appearance of the entire interface isn't exactly how we would envision Apple to have implemented something like this.
Functionally, everything in the dash works. The buttons are all fully functional and don’t appear to create any disturbances with other tweaks. If you want an easy way to reach system features all in one location, then Imperium is something to take a look at. If you’re content with using Apple’s multitasking App Switcher and you currently use a different toggle or shortcut system like Deck
, then this tweak might not be for you.
iOS 5, iPhone or iPod touch
Developer: Akhil Tolani
Sources: Akhil Tolani