What does your default homepage look like? My homepage comes with Orange, and looks like the screen to the right. There are several things about it that I don’t like or need. First of all, I don’t use any of the links that are presented to me. Of course Orange wants to promote it’s own portal, but I don’t need it. Second, I already know how to get connected, and I don’t need to save offline content. If I do, I simply copy text to Pocket Word, or save the image I need. So I don’t need that blue text either. Third, I want my links to be more spaced vertically so it’s easier to pick a link. I don’t need my homepage to be very pretty, but I do like it to be more useful. In fact, I’d prefer to have some of my Favorites here, which saves me another screentap of opening my Favorites to access my most frequently used websites!
So what do we do? We create our own homepage with some very basic HTML!
It doesn’t have to be difficult. Just accept that it might not look very pretty. Let’s set our goal at creating four links to our most frequently used websites. You can do more if you search the internet for more advanced commands which help you change the color or size of your links, for example. We’ll just stick to the basics. :)
On your Desktop pc, open Notepad. On the first line, type <html>.
On the second line start with <a href=” and then type the URL you want to link to. Immediately after the URL, type “>.
The next step is to type the name of the link. For example, my first link will be to Gmail, so I place Gmail after the > character. Then close the link by typing </a>.
We will want the next link to start at a new line, so after closing the link we type <br>. If you want an empty line after a link, add another <br>.
Repeat that process for all your links. After the last one, there’s no need to end with <br>, just end with </html>.
It will looks something like this (click to enlarge):
Then save your file as Homepage_custom.htm and copy it (with ActiveSync’s Explore button) to the Windows folder on your device. Open it on your device, and it will open Internet Explorer Mobile with that file. Then go to Menu > Extra > Options. You can then press “Use Current” and your new homepage will be set!
Pretty? Not at all. But it saves you the effort of going into your favorites to open your most used websites. ;-)
And, again, of course you can use some more advanced things to optimze the look. I had the luck of having small arrows in front of my links on the Orange homepage, so I used those on my custom homepage as well. (I can’t share them since they might be property of Orange)
I also changed the font color to black, so I made my screen look like this. It required to place <font color=”#000000″> in front of the names of the links (Gmail, Google, etc) and </font> after each link, before the </a> command. You can of course also add another <br> tag at the beginning to make your links start a little under the address bar!