iOS 5’s Notification Center system is amazing, however wouldn’t it be cool if you could customize any application notification sound, the color of your banners, and have the ability to set custom animations for when the banners appear on your screen? Now that idea is a reality with a new jailbreak tweak dubbed Chip by iOS developers Davide Mainas and Nicolo Ciraci. The screenshot above demonstrates the use of color changes with Chip.
Unlike most jailbreak tweaks, which put a preferences pane right in the first Window of the Settings application, you will find Chip’s preferences pane right under the Notifications section from the Settings application. The preferences pane is labeled, “Global Preferences” and doesn’t have any icons on it like usual tweaks. Tapping on it yields the limitless customization panes illustrated below:
The first preferences pane comes with four main components, which will be broken down into sections for this review. These components include banner colors, animations, sounds, and the ability to test the notification appearance changes.
One of the best parts about this tweak that you won’t forget is the banner color changing options. The options for changing the colors of the banner are extensive and range from changing the background color of the banner, to the text color within the banner, and even changing the color and the width of the border around the banner. You can even have a gradient color instead of a solid color. Since the colors are changed with RGB sliders, there are no limitations to the colors you can use, however the tweak also comes with some presets if you’re not comfortable with the heavy load of controls the developers give you.
Apart from colors, you can also change the entrance and exit animations for the notification banners. The animations are chosen from a pre-set list from the preferences pane. You have all of these to choose from:
- right to left
- left to right
If appearance isn’t enough to float your boat, the tweak also comes with the ability to set custom sounds for the banners. For most notifications, the banner is followed by a tri-tone notification sound. Chip allows you to change that sound to any other stock notification sound from the list such as tones from your ringtone and text tone list.
After all your customizations are said and done, you can go back into the original preferences pane and tap on the, “Test notification” button to launch a test banner to see how the notification will appear and sound. The banner mimics any other notification banner you would receive from an application and includes the animation, sound, and custom appearance. You don’t have to look at the test banner, however it’s a good way to see if you will like your changes.
In an upcoming update, a version fixing a slight bug that caused a small fraction of users to fall into a safe mode loop will be completely fixed. The version is already finished and is waiting approval. The update, (version 1.0.1) will likely be live in the next 24 to 48 hours.
If you love having the power to customize things beyond Apple’s control, then Chip is a tweak you will want to look into. Because of the extensive options it comes with, it blows all other banner-customizing tweaks out of the water. Chip does require iOS 5 to be installed and you can find it in the BigBoss repository. In future updates, the developers will be adding even more animation options and custom banner appearances.
Version: 1.0.1 (unreleased, but coming)
Requirements: iOS 5
Developer(s): Davide Mainas and Nicolo Ciraci
Editor's Rating: 4/5
Sources: Davide Mainas and Nicolo Ciraci