Apple Announces iOS 7: The iPhone Gets a Fresh Coat of Paint, New Features
June 10, 2013 3:00 PM
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Apple finally revamps the design aesthetic of iOS
Today is a big day for Apple. Many in the tech industry have taken swipes at the company over the lack of new products, the stagnation of iOS, and the rise of Samsung in the smartphone arena. Apple is looking to tackle at least one of those sore points today with the
introduction of iOS 7
The Lockscreen now supports animated backgrounds... where've we seen that before?
The overall look of iOS 7 is quite colorful with flourishes that bring to mind both Android and Windows Phone 8 (courtesy of iOS’ newfound “flatness”).
Control Center allows you to swipe up from the bottom of the screen to quickly access Wi-Fi/Bluetooth/Screen brightness etc. This is "quick access" functionality that Android users have experienced for years. Apple has also vastly improved multitasking that interestingly looks a bit like what we've already seen with webOS.
From left to right: Weather, Control Center, Safari tabs
Safari has a new full screen mode, Smart Search field, and a new interface for tabs (you are no longer limited to just 8 tabs).
IOS 7 also includes AirDrop, which allows you to quickly share files with friends that are nearby. Craig Federighi took a quick jab at Samsung by stating that you don't have to "bump" phones together to share information.
From left to right: Notification Center, Multitasking, AirDrop
The Camera app has also been given a makeover to make it easier to switch between video, photo, and panorama modes. And instead of seeing an endless scrolling stream of photos that you've taken, the iOS 7 Photos app uses geotagging information to group your photos together based on when and where you were when you took them.
The new Photos app
Siri has been upgraded with new, high-quality female and male voices. You can now speak to Siri to do things like turning on/off Bluetooth/Wi-Fi or changing your screen brightness.
The App Store has been revamped with the new features aimed at parents (choosing apps by age range) and by showing you popular apps based on your current location. In addition, apps now update in the background (again, a feature that has been available on competing platforms for quite some time).
Eddie Cue also introduced
, which has been long rumored for iOS 7. It's free (ad-supported), but those who use iTunes Match will get the service without ads. If your familiar with services like Pandora, Google Play Music, or Spotify; you pretty much know what to expect from iTunes Radio.
Other features to look for in iOS 7 include FaceTime audio (high quality voice-only calls over Wi-Fi), Notifications Sync (if you dismiss a notification on your iPhone, it is also dismissed on your iPad), and “iOS in the Car”.
The first iOS 7 beta will be available today for the iPhone, while iPad users will gain access in the coming weeks. The full public rollout will take place this fall.
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RE: "Steve Wouldn't Do That"
6/10/2013 5:23:34 PM
The icons are no worse than they are. Sadly, they are still vastly better than what's found on WinPhone or Android. Sad those other platforms can't enforce icons that at least match.
Emulating MS or Android? Some people must have no eye for design. They see big thin fonts, and the only association they can make is WinPhone or something. Win stylistically has very little to offer. I'm not saying its bad, it's actually good, but it's simple. The only way they're emulating MS is if MS invented the style of solid colors and big thin fonts.... Isn't this one of those sites that likes to bash companies for NOT inventing something...
Don't even get me started on Android. It's flat, the core apps are modern, but that's it. Everything else about it is lacking in terms of eye candy, which is what we're talking about here.
The bigger point here is that the Smartphone has been done. It's not going to change much. Who's expecting big changes, when we still have rectangles with touch screens. Obviously you'll still have icons. The only thing they can do is more gestures, until there's a newer and better way to interact with mobile computing devices. What the Smartphone has to gain right now is more power for more robust apps.
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