Last week’s annual Apple Developers Conference in San Francisco followed much speculation. Usually the giants of innovation release a few more leaks ahead of the Conference, but this year the key players left more to the imagination than usual
A new iPhone is expected to be unveiled in the autumn but the big buzz surrounded the new IOS 7 Operating System for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Here we take a look at the key changes, mainly focused around design:
- New-look App icons – In place of App icons that attempt to mirror their counterparts in the real-world, Apple is opting for simplicity and continuity across their Apps, with subtle motion. So for example, if a thunderstorm is predicted on a weather forecast, the App will display a thunder cloud. Apple’s head of design John Ives said that this was part of an effort to achieve order amidst complexity.
- Run more Apps simultaneously – With IOS 7, your device will be able to run a greater amount of Apps at the same time. It’ll be simpler to switch from App to App with an easy swipe across the screen.
- Smart App Updates – IOS 7 will note which Apps you are using most regularly and ensure the content for these Apps is always up to date.
- Easy Access Control Centre – IOS 7 allows you to access a control centre with an easy bottom screen swipe. The control centre contains functions such as flight mode, brightness adjust, and so on.
- Cleaner Calendar – The Calendar has been streamlined and simplified.
- Easy Access Contacts – You can now access your address book while reading messages with a simple left-screen swipe
- Simple share with AirDrop – This is a new feature enabling IOS users to easily share data among Apple devices.
- Better photo organisation – iPhone pics will now be allotted moments – for example “Day at the Beach” or “Trip to Paris”
- New Look Siri Personal Assistant – With a less robotic voice that now comes in a choice of male or female, the new Siri can tell you what people are talking about on Twitter, perform a Bing search, play your most recent voice mail, or adjust your phone’s brightness – now in German and French too, with more languages scheduled soon.
- The crowning glory: iTunes Radio – A new mobile device music streaming facility for IOS 7 that personalises your playlists based on what you’ve bought on iTunes and listened to in the past. It also includes a one click iTunes purchase service. Free with ads, if you opt for iTunes Match $25555 per year service you can have it without advertising. It is coming to the US this autumn.
Early murmurings on the new iOS 7 are looking good, with a nod from engadget and a CNET preview calling it “the most radical overhaul ever for Apple’s mobile software, bringing a cleaner, flatter, brighter look and a fistful of new features”.
Apple announced that iOS 7 will also be compatible for the iPhone 4, followed by the iPad 2, and the iPad Mini after that. Developers were given access to a test version on Monday 10th June. Everyone else will have to wait until the autumn, which is also when Apple is expected to unveil a new iPhone. A version of iOS 7 is also being created for cars.