Check out some of the latest features that Apple introduced in the iOS 12, iOS 11 and iOS 10 in the past few years and how the new iOS 12 is different in comparison to the earlier versions.
World Wide Developer Conference, or better known as WWDC, is the yearly press conference where Apple shows its software prowess by bringing in software updates full of new features.
Apple is also known to showcase some new hardware at the WWDC, alongside an array of OS related announcements. But this year’s WWDC was all about software only.
Let us peek into the sea of software and software-related features that Apple keenly introduced last night.
First and foremost, we all know that Apple is known for its simplicity and uniqueness that comes with its iOS operating system. And with the announcement of iOS 12 at WWDC, just like every year, Apple didn’t shy away from stating the fact that the upcoming version of iOS is going to much faster and better than any update before.
Apple claims that the iOS12 is designed in a such a way that the experience of using an iPhone and iPad will be much more delightful, responsive, and delightful.
How it affects the performance – iOS will make you swipe the camera app up to 70% faster, keyboard display will pop-up up to 50% more quickly, and launching app will be twice as fast as before, even with multiple apps open in the background.
FaceTime goes group
People have demanded group video-calling for long, and Apple has finally listened to them.
FaceTime in iOS 12 now comes with support for an audio/video conversation with up to 32 people at a single time.
That said, tile for the person who is speaking in the chat will get larger by itself when that person speaks making the conversation more meaningful.
Memoji is customized Animoji and is limited to iPhone X.
You can customize the Memoji according to your mood and style. It allows you to make an alter ego of your self or your avatar to talk with others.
Interestingly, it works in both iMessage and FaceTime.
With the introduction to ARKit 2, developers will be able to create AR experiences that multiple people can feel at once.
Firstly, a new iOS app called Measure will let the users measure actual objects as they point their camera at them.
Secondly, AR objects can be sent using Messages and Mail, starting with the new iOS 12.
Screen Time – Fight Your Smartphone Addiction
Finally, a feature to let you see how much time you’ve been wasting, or maybe making, surfing the web or playing the games.
Now parents can set timing-control on the apps their kids use, making them limit their phone usage.
Screen Time is a feature that will collect all the data about different websites, apps, and other stuff as long as the phone screen is on.
It is quite similar to a very popular iOS app, called Moment. The Moment app can track the screen-on usage along with the duration for which the user has been using the web, scrolling apps or doing any other task.
In Moment, users can set time limits for which they want to use the phone, and get a notification if they go beyond the daily or preset limits.
The primary concern here is to combat the smartphone addiction, both Screen Time feature and Moment app may prove to be very helpful.
For You tab
As per Apple, this new feature is set to showcase some of the user’s great moments from the photo library, and sharing them with the people as long as they are there in the photos.
It gives suggestions to the different already-existing photos in the Photos app, with or without typing anything in the newly-introduced search box.
There is an addition of numerous keywords to the Photo Search; You can refine the search results with ease.
watchOS 5 is the successor to the last year’s proprietary software running the various Apple Watch variants.
It will be available to the users coming fall (October or November) and will be compatible with Apple Watch Series 1, 2, and 3.
Now you can challenge your friends for a 7-day competition.
More actively you compete for your activities, more points you earn. Apart from that, users can share their activities with other people and create a challenge for each other.
Also, the user will be alerted, whether the opponent is leading or lagging, along with the score during the whole competition.
Workout app now comes with a Hiking option. You can now measure and track the elevation or slant, and get credit for the calories burnt according to the altitude achieved.
watchOS 5 also offers you to see steps run, on per minute basis, which was not present on the previous iteration.
A feature that has been readily available on the other Apple devices has now come to Apple Watch.
Apple Podcasts will let you listen to all the stories, news and more.
This simple-yet-funny app will let the user invite any compatible Apple watch user from their contacts for a one-on-one talk, on a tap.
Just like an actual walkie-talkie, press the on-screen controls, you are ready for chit-chat with your friend, as long as their Apple Watch is compatible.
Siri Gets Smarter
The process of interacting with Siri has become much easier with watchOS5.
Now, instead of saying “Hey Siri,” all you have to do is just raise your wrist. Raise your wrist, and you’re ready to speak with Siri.
Apple Watch will now have better notifications, thanks to watchOS5.
Different notifications from the same app will come clustered together, reducing the overall scrolling by maintaining uniformity.
Also, you can do actions on third-party apps from the App-Specific notifications.
iOS 11 Top Features You Will Love
Top New Features for iOS 11
The latest version of iOS, the iOS11 is here. Here are some of the best features you would love in the new OS for your iPhone and iPad. The new iOS is built around core technologies namely Metal, Machine Learning & Augmented Reality.
A lot of innovative stuff on the iOS is possible due to Machine Learning that uses on-device processing of information to maintain privacy.
The iMessage app comes with a better App Drawer and is more easily accessible now. Also, the messages are saved on Cloud and all devices are in sync. Further, Any message deletion on one device will delete it across devices.
The older messages are encrypted and stored on the Cloud freeing up device space.
Apple Pay now supports person to person payments. The feature is now part of the iMessage app and uses Touch ID for authentication. It’s available on Apple Watch as well.
Siri is better at speech recognition and can pronounce the same word differently according to context. The new voice sounds much more natural. Siri comes with a new interface and new features such as voice translation in real time.
Siri learns from the content on the devices and syncs the learning’s across the devices. It allows for a better seamless experience. The supported languages are English, Chinese, French, German, Italian and Spanish.
Siri Kit for developers now supports more apps such as Notes, WeChat, Omnifocus, etc.
Camera – New HEVC format is now on iOS, which offers 2x compression. The developers have access to a new feature called Depth API. The camera offers better image quality, improved low light photography, Optical image stabilization, True Tone flash, and HDR. Long exposure feature mimics taking long exposure photography resulting in some beautiful clicks.
Photos have improved Memories feature. It uses Machine Learning to create Memories by identifying photos on basis of events and occasions.
Live Photos comes with new functionalities, you can trim the videos. You can select any moment of the video as the primary photo. You can create effects with video such as seamless loops.
A New Control Panel.
You still have to swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access it. The layout is more spacious and has user-friendly, with bigger buttons. Also, you can adjust the volume using bigger vertical sliders that are easier to work without encroaching on other buttons. The 3D touch can reveal further controls and information.
The notification screen is changed and which was earlier somewhat confusingly combined with the lock screen.
Do not Disturb mode while Driving
There’s a new kind of CarPlay interface for people who don’t have a CarPlay car. There is a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature that uses Bluetooth or Wi-Fi Doppler effect to turn off your phone screen when you’re driving. Seems like a very smart and necessary feature for mobile addicts.
It has better support for multi-room speaker support. AirPlay 2 is refreshed with support from third-party audio devices manufacturers like Bang and Olufsen, Devialet, Libratone, Bluesound, Bowers & Wilkins.
MusicKit for Apple Music
Third-party apps can now access Apple Music. Apps like Nike, Anchor, and Shazam can interact with Apple Music.
Besides, the App Store comes with a new refreshing look. The main screen is a tab called ‘Today’ featuring big icons that you can scroll. Also, the games which is a major category gets its own tab. It even features curated stuff on the ‘Top Story’ tab.
AR Kit – With the help of Augmented Reality, the iPhone can recognize objects and create virtual objects on screen that seamlessly interact with the physical objects in view. It can track motion, make out boundaries of objects, estimate ambient light and create shadows of virtual objects, and supports Unity, Unreal and SceneKit.
QR code support built into the Camera especially for the Chinese market, accessible right from the Lock Screen.
iOS 11 Brings More Controls To AirPods and Support to Play Flac Files
There were several updates for the iPad as well in the new iOS 11, but due to the paucity of time, Apple was not able to share everything they wanted at the event.
Notably, usually, Apple has 2 events by this time of the year, this year they merged everything in a single event. Additionally, there were several other announcements to make including the launch of new iPad and iMac which left little time.
Anyways, the Good news is that the AirPod users now have more control over there devices with iOS 11.
The iOS 11 promises to bring support for FLAC files. Notably, FLAC is an audio format, originally developed in the 1990’s to take on the popular MP3 format.
FLAC offers very high definition sound with minimal loss of quality when compared to an MP3 file. It is also compact in size. Apple iPhone 6s and later already support the format with use of an APP but now the iOS 11 will have native support, reports MacRumors.
The benefit for the end users is to have high-quality sound experience and use lesser storage.
Another big update is More Controls To AirPods, that will also have support for playing the next/previous track and turn it off by double tap. Earlier users were only able to double tap to activate SIRI or play/pause the music.
Additionally, Apple has now assigned particular functionality to the Airpods where the user can assign different controls to the left and the right Airpod. That means you can double-tap to activate SIRI on one Airpod and double tap on the other pod for the next/previous track.
In-Depth Look Into iOS 10 – What’s New and Good
The latest update to the iPhones & iPads operating system, iOS which was showcased to the public during the WWDC in Jun’16 is out for public starting 13 Sep’16. If you haven’t already received the prompt to upgrade to iOS 10, you can go the Settings à General à Software Update to manually check for the update.
Before you upgrade, be sure to take a back up to iCloud or a computer through iTunes to avoid possible loss of data due to rare mishaps like those being reported by some people who were quick to update. Apple has stated the initial teething issues have now been ironed out.
Also, you need to make space… plenty of space. Since this a major upgrade, you will need around 1 GB of free space. The exact size of the download will depend on your device. iPhones on iOS 9.3.5. are typically asking for 1.0 to 1.5 GB of free space. iOS 10 is available only for iPhones 5 or later, iPad 4th gen or later, iPad Mini 2 or later, iPad Pros and iPod Touch 6th gen only.
iOS 10 offers major changes visually and features besides the usual security fixes. Traditionally Apple has kept a tight leash on its operating system and has given very limited control to 3rd party developers over native capabilities. Let’s take an in-depth look into what’s new.
In-Depth Look Into iOS 10 – What’s New and Good – The Messages app has been overhauled with a lot of radical changes and feature additions. The new Messages app looks nothing like the staid old self and resembles a full-fledged messenger app like WhatsApp.
You can add special Bubble effects which let you add another dimension to the plain text and express added feelings such as loud, gentle, with a slam or with mysteriously invisible ink. There are full-screen effects to create an impact for special occasions, like Balloons, Confetti, Lasers, Fireworks and Shooting Stars. However, these effects play only once when you open the message for the first time. Space for digital touch allows you to write, draw, send sketches, etc.
Emoji uses tap to replace which substitutes highlighted words with emojis. The links shared in Messages are now rich links that show a preview of shared webpage similar to other messenger apps. The links display media and can it can be played in-line, such as viewing YouTube videos or playing music shared through Apple Music.
There is also a mini app store for iMessges which can be used to download apps designed for specifically to be used within the Messages app. Apps meant for Messages could be like the one that allows you to download and send stickers.
Future apps that would be debuting soon could allow for more tasks to be accomplished from with Messages such as ordering food and making payments. To avoid clutter, you can turn the apps on/off from the ‘Manage’ tab in the app store.
The APIs for Siri has been opened for developers with the result that Siri can be used with a lot of 3rd party apps to accomplish tasks by just using voice. Siri can be used with messaging apps like WhatsApp and Line to send, search and read messages.
It can make VoIP calls with apps such as Skype, Spark, and Vonage. Siri can be used to search for images in apps like Pinterest and Shutterfly. It can also make payments over apps like Square. Siri can start, stop or pause workout sessions on fitness apps like Runtastic and RunKeeper. It can book cabs though apps like Uber. For cars that support CarPlay, Siri can adjust radio and climate settings, etc.
In-Depth Look Into iOS 10 – Whats New and Good – The Maps app has also undergone some big changes with a new simpler look and features. Sliding up from the bottom will display suggestions on places you are likely to visit next based on time of the day based on your routine or saved calendar events.
Maps will display the location for home, work and locations from upcoming calendar events. Maps will integrate closely with CarPlay, and now you can find where you parked your car with the help of CarPlay/Bluetooth. Also, it will display weather information or the area being viewed.
The new design for the app and navigation is cleaner and easier to understand with new callout designs and result from the display. The Maps app now adds traffic information to navigation as well. Maps can also add other relevant information such as petrol pumps or restaurants on the way and the extra time that will be added to the trip to make the detour. Traffic and directions information in Maps is currently not available in India with only the standard/satellite view available in India, which is a bit lacking.
The opening of Maps for 3rd party developers allows for extensions to be added which will allow making restaurant reservations and booking cabs.
Maps over CarPlay is currently not available in India.
The Photos now comes with the intelligent search feature and can group your photos to form memories. With the help of AI-powered facial recognition engine, Photos can identify faces and group them. The AI runs natively on your device without transferring data to any remote location and can analyze photos to understand the content such as object identification. It’s now possible to group photos in an album based on locations.
Photos app now has a new tab labeled Memories which makes use of the AI to cluster relevant pictures of events, vacations, and people together in a collection with important pictures highlighted. Memories can create beautiful movies automatically and add theme based music and cinematic effects. You can edit the Memories movie to make them shorter or longer or automatically assign music based on mood and share them easily.
Brilliance control can be used to make adjustments to specific regions of photos such as brightness and contrast.
In-Depth Look Into iOS 10 – Whats New and Good – The Home app aims to unify home automation accessories by standardizing protocols for smart accessories. The Home app can securely manage all compatible HomeKit accessories in a secure manner.
‘Scenes’ is used to control a group of accessories collectively. Scenes like good morning or good night will manage multiple accessories with a single tap. The app has rich notifications that allow for quick actions from notifications directly. The app can be used to provide temporary home access to trusted people. A compatible door camera can be linked such that live video feed can be directly seen on the iPhone’s lock screen.
Apple Music app has been revamped with a new design and simpler interface. Further, the company has been working hard to make their music service a success and compete with established players in the market. The new app combines the traditional player app with music streaming app to offer a more feature rich app. The default tab in the Music app is the library, making it simpler to go straight to your music which you have transferred from iTunes or purchased from Apple.
‘For You’ tab is bigger and clearer. It lists your recently played tracks and provides recommendations on playlists and albums based on your music preferences. ‘Browse’ will show you less personalized broader curated playlists and important releases every week.
Radio tab, which streams music from various stations is now available in close to 100 countries. Radio can be used to listen to Beats 1 live and offers curated stations for a wide range of music genres.
A strip shows the currently playing track and tapping it will take you to the ‘Now Playing’ tab. The tab displays information such as track information and music controls in a larger size. Swiping up will display the lyrics.
The Apple News app has been redesigned with a new simpler layout featuring bold new typography, vibrant colors and distinct sections dedicated to various topics. ‘Top Stories’ highlights the important news throughout the day. ‘Trending Stories’ highlights the popular stories. Stories are grouped under sections that collate news based on your interests. ‘Featured Stories’ showcases the best stories of the week. ‘Subscriptions’ allows you to subscribe to magazines. ‘Breaking News’ will keep you updated with latest stories with notifications on the lock screen. Currently, Apple News is not available in India.
In-Depth Look Into iOS 10 – Whats New and Good – The lock screen has been redesigned with the ‘Slide to unlock’ now removed. To view notifications you no longer need to press the home button to wake the screen, simply raising your phone will wake the phone. If you don’t want the phone to wake while raising it, it can be turned off from the settings. Raise to wake requires iPhone 6s, 6s Plus, SE, 7 and 7 Plus.
The redesigned lock screen has rich notifications which can be interacted with the use of 3D touch. The notifications no longer darken the wallpaper in the background. Swiping right now reveals a new page titled ‘Today View’ which shows search bar and widgets. Swiping right activates the camera.
The Control Centre can still be accessed by swiping up but has been redesigned and split into three separate panels with larger cleaner controls. The music controls are no longer on the default control center view, instead to access them you have to swipe left to see the expanded and larger music controls. Swiping right will show controls for the Home app. But does splitting a single panel into three panels a step forward?
The enhanced Force touch use on lock screen can be used to expand rich notifications for quick actions. 3D touch opens up many options available in the app so that you can interact from notifications itself without having to switch apps.
An important point to note is that unlocking the lock screen no longer works in the way it used to work on iOS 9 and earlier. Resting your finger on the TouchID unlocks the lock screen, but the lock screen remains there, and you are not redirected to the home screen. To go to the home screen, you have to tap the home button again. This doesn’t sound very convenient, and you can turn off this behavior from Settings.
The new keyboard has been enhanced and relies on deep learning based AI for contextual predictions. The emojis have received special attention in the latest upgrade featuring new and some redesigned emojis. Contextual predictions are based on your location and other information. The calendar can add events on its own based on information collated from apps such as Mail and Messages. The multilingual keyboard allows you to type in two languages without switch keyboards.
Missed call notification has a new UI. Also no need to listen to your voicemails as you can get the transcription. iOS 10 also offers better spam call detection with the help of 3rd party apps. VoIP apps will integrate with the Phone app to display calls on lock screen just like normal voice calls and includes additional support like mute and call waiting.
The split view comes to iPad allowing you to view web pages in Safari simultaneously. Collaboration in Notes app allows people you have invited to work on notes collaboratively. Apple Pay is integrated with Safari for easier purchases online with the help of Apple Pay. However, it’s not supported in India yet. Live photos now support live filters.
All in all the latest iteration of iOS seems to hold a lot of promise, and we recommend upgrading to take full advantage of all the new features.