Apple just announced iOS 7 at the company's annual developer conference, WWDC 2013. Here's what you need to know about Apple's newest mobile operating system, including features and a release date.
1. iOS Looks Completely Different
The user interface for iOS 7 has completely changed, and is very different from previous incarnations. Almost everything has changed in iOS 7, starting with just unlocking the phone. Now, you swipe upwards instead of to the side. Things get even more different once you get inside. Now, the home screen, while it seems the same, is very different, and the icons move as you swivel your device. There are a lot of aesthetic changes inside the apps, namely Messages, Calendar, Reminders, and Weather. Apple also took some notes from other competitors, like Mailbox and Yahoo Weather. Apple implemented the swipe feature to quickly delete, move, or reply to emails, which is one of the main features of Mailbox — the iOS app that was sold to Dropbox for $100 million.
2. There are Ton of New Features, Like an Updated
There are dozens of new updates, including Control Center, which is a new feature that lets users adjust the brightness, Wi-Fi, and more from anywhere on your device. Siri is updated (again) and features Bing search results and Wikipedia pages, but doesn't seem like that it can keep up to Google Now. However, Siri wasn't really the focus of iOS 7, instead, it was the complete overhaul Apple did with the operating system. Multitasking now uses tiles instead of a tiny icons so you can easily change between apps. iTunes Radio was introduced, and is free (with ads) for everyone and free (without ads) for iTunes Match users. Photos got a huge update, and you can finally have shared photo streams. Airdrop comes to iOS, so you can now easily share items with nearby contacts. With so many new features, iOS 7 should (should be the key word) be more popular than iOS 6, with a temperamental Apple Maps app that has led to iOS 6 being the most controversial Apple release in recent memory.
3. It Got Huge Applause at WWDC 2013
Everyone at WWDC was ecstatic when the completely redesigned iOS 7 was announced. The roaring applause from press and developers showed how some of the features added to iOS 7 were so necessary. Developers and users alike have been begging for a major UI overhaul of iOS, after Android has kept up — and, in some ways, surpassed — iOS. It was time for a major update, and iOS users got it. But, will all of them be happy with it?
4. It Looks Great, But It May Be Too Different
It looks really clean and flat, as we've previous reported, but iOS 7 is radically different. After 6 previous versions — all of which were generally the same — it could alienate some long time iOS users that have grown accustomed to Apple's previous mobile operating systems. Users have difficulties accepting change from something they're used to (go on a tech website whenever Facebook announces a new feature or product). While iOS 7 is certainly exciting, there is the possibility that it's so different that Apple may hurt their loyal base by making iOS 7 so different.
5. iOS 7 is Live for Developers, Public Release Coming In The Fall
iOS 7 has been released for developers, and they'll be able to test out the new operating system now. But, the general, public, release will be "sometime this fall." Obviously there will be some leaks when some problematic developers who decide to upload the operating system to peer-to-peer networks and torrent sites.