We are still months away from the iPhone 8 (it’s release has yet to be confirmed), but that has not dampened the Apple rumor mill from running on it’s normal 24/7 cycle. The anticipation is heightened by fact that the release will coincide with iPhone’s 10th anniversary–and Apple is not one to shy away from make a splash. While little is known about the actual iPhone 8, what we do know is that whenever it is released, it will be running the newly upgraded iOS 11. To help you understand a little more about what you can expect from the new generations of iPhones and iPads, we have put together a list of the top 5 (or so…) new features available in iOS 11. A developer version of iOS 11 is available now, with the full release slated for the fall.
1)Revamped App Store
Coming up on our tenth anniversary ourselves, we have seen Apple and its offerings undergo a number of transformations over that time- well on pretty much everything except for the App Store. But with iOS 11 that has all changed, with a dramatic overhaul that hopes to make discovering apps and games easier. When the App Store was first introduced in 2007, there were only 500 apps available, but now the store contains over 2.2 million, making searchability a much greater priority. The new app store will revolve around its tabs, focusing on what’s new and popular with curated content including in-depth interviews, helpful tips, and beautiful artwork. The newly redesigned app product page will give us new ways to market our apps, and show off their usability and features.
2)Increased AR Capabilities
In classic Apple style, they are entering another medium – Augmented Reality- fashionably late to the party, but ready to take their spot among the elite. By introducing ARKit, developers can help build high-quality AR experiences to iPhone and iPad using iOS device’s cameras, motion sensors and processors. The OS is only in Beta but AR developers have already been gushing about how simplistic ARKit is to use. This paired with the fact that iOS devices are ready to roll out these new AR apps, makes the outlook for consumer AR extremely positive.
3)Redesigned App Drawer
Similarly to the App Store, the iMessage app drawer is seeing a redesign to create a more convenient experience, and keep you in the app longer- rather than head to similar messengers like WhatsApp, WeChat, or Facebook Messenger. What really excited us the most about the app drawer in iOS 11 is the ability for Apple Pay users to make and receive payments safely and securely without leaving iMessage. The received money gets placed in the new Apple Pay Cash account, and can be transferred to your bank account, used to pay for something online, or sent to another Apple Pay customer. The ability to transfer money within iMessage will make it much more convenient to split money with friends and family, and should help Apple Pay adoption rates rise dramatically.
4)Improved iPad Features
The iPad’s continued evolution to full-fledged computer takes a giant leap forward with new iOS 11 features aimed at boosting productivity. A new customizable dock and redesigned app switcher will make multitasking easier with quicker access to your most used apps, while the new Files app will make all of your images and documents more accessible. And for those of you who purchased an Apple Pencil, but haven’t found many use cases for it, it is now more deeply integrated into the iPad with support for inline drawing and Instant Notes.
5)Best of the Rest
Condensing our “best of iOS 11” list to just 5 features was a tough task considering the iOS 11 announcement at WWDC ‘17 was teeming with new improvements from Apple. With that being said, we have decided to cheat and throw all the best of the rest into this category. SIri has been upgraded to sound more natural and include more languages. For budding photographers, the camera sees an upgrade with images taken in Portrait Mode now utilizing optical image stabilization, True Tone flash, and HDR. The control centre now allows for customization and the notifications on the lock screen have been upgraded as well. There is also more support for the Apple Pencil, a one-handed keyboard, screen recording, and Instant-Wifi sharing…we told you iOS 11 was jam packed!
Now we just have to play the waiting game to see if there are some more secret features which can only be unlocked by the next edition iPhones.