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Apple unveiled the tenth version of iOS, the heart and soul of all the company’s mobile hardware at the Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference 2016 held at San Francisco. According to Apple, this is the biggest release of iOS ever. The new version of the mobile operating system, iOS 10, will come to iPhone and iPad users this fall and will be available to developers in a public beta in July. It will be compatible with all iPhones starting with the iPhone 5; iPads starting with the 4th-generation iPad and iPad Mini 2 and the 6th-generation iPod Touch. In celebration of the operating system’s double-digit milestone, Apple is making lots and lots of upgrades. Let’s take a look at iOS 10 features.
iOS 10 Features – Everything You Need to Know
Redesigned lock screen with interactive notifications
iOS 10 comes with a redesigned lock screen, quick interactions with apps, and expanded use of 3D Touch. The OS is now capable of waking up the iPhone the moment you pick it up. Lock screen notifications have been refined as well, and no longer darken and blur the entire lock screen . A new “Raise to wake” feature will, as the name suggests, wake the phone’s lock screen when it’s lifted to give you an overview of notifications and updates. In addition, notifications are now interactive, with real-time updates and direct replies.
Control Center has been redesigned as well, and now has a dedicated music widget that can be accessed by swiping to the side. The expansion of 3D Touch on the home screen includes widgets for apps that don’t require you launching the app at all. What may be the best change to notifications is the ability to clear all of your old notifications with 3D Touch. Just hard press over the little “x” icon in any group within the notifications pulldown menu and a “clear all” box pops up. You’ll be able to see things like the latest sports scores with the ESPN app and even get into video highlights, without entering the app properly. This is very much in line with what Google’s been doing with Android.
Siri open to developers
For the past four years, only Apple dictated Siri’s responses. Two billion requests a week go through Siri, and it’s now going to do so much more, according to Apple. With that, they announced that iOS 10 will open up Siri to third-party developers. A big feature of iOS 10 is that Siri’s API has been opened up to developers, thus making it possible to integrate the voice assistant’s functionality into third-party apps. Siri can now be used to send text messages via Slack, initiate Skype and Vonage voice calls, authenticate transactions.
Siri is able to help you start tracking your fitness goals with MapMyRun, Runtastic and RunKeeper, send money to friends with Number26, Square and Alipay, and start VoIP calls with Cisco Spark, Vonage, and Spike. Essentially, this makes Siri closer in useful functionality to Google’s own Google Now assistant, which has taken advantage of third-party apps for a while. This one of the welcome inclusion in the new iOS 10 features for developers.
Smarter keyboard with Siri-influenced QuickType
Apple iOS 10 features include a smarter virtual keyboard. Apple is now using deep learning and AI to make smarter suggestions using Apple’s Quick Type keyboard. The keyboard can now give intelligent suggestions and can get help from Siri too. Using deep learning, it’s able to understand the wider context of what you’re typing, influencing the words in the suggestion bar above the keyboard. The voice assistant can access current location, schedule automatic reminders, check your calendar, and now supports multilingual typing without needing to switch keyboard.
Locally, Siri uses deep learning to analyze a conversation and is able to pick up on you and a friend talking about food, a proposed time and restaurant address, and then suggesting to add it to Calendar. The intelligence comes from Siri, which knows your activities, who you’re talking to, what you’re talking about (like planning a brunch or movie date), and what is on your calendar. Siri will also be able to offer suggestions in multiple languages recognizing when you’re typing in different languages in one conversation, like moving between English and Spanish. You no longer have to change the keyboard’s language.
Enhanced Photos app with AI recognition
Another iOS 10 features is notable improvements to the Photos app. The Apple Photos app will now have facial recognition, as well as scene recognition to recognize animals, landmarks and things like mountains, trees and other things found in nature. It is now powered by advanced machine learning technology for enhanced facial recognition. And not just that, the deep learning technology can now be used to sense objects, both living and non-living. The phone will cluster together photos that are most relevant at any moment — trips, photos of the last weekend or last year. It can then automatically edit together highlight reels of particular trips or events.
Other than that, the feature smartly arranges the photos in a collection into playable movies – basically an animated slideshow with background music. You can also trim the length of the movies, change the mood, and share them with your friends. iOS 10, Apple showed off a new user interface with a new album tab called “Memories.” It illustrated how a grid of photos as well as a layout with photos where some are bigger than the others, trying to determine key highlights.
Apple Maps is getting an all-new design in iOS 10. Apple Maps have been redesigned, and come with new features. You can slide up from the bottom of the iOS device’s screen, and get suggestions about everything from nearby restaurants to traffic updates. Maps will offer nearby restaurant suggestions and its redesigned look is extending to navigation. Turn-by-turn navigation UI has been improved and can be zoomed in/out to find out what lies ahead.
It’s part of Apple CarPlay, naturally, and will also channel turn-by-turn directions right into your car’s instrument cluster if you want it. You can also book a reservation with Uber, pay with Apple Pay, all without leaving the app. Basically, Apple is still trying to be the one Maps app to rule them all but still seems to be playing catch up rather than innovating in any interesting way. For the first time, Maps will also be opened up to developers.
Apple Music is also getting in on the refreshing fun with “a redesign from the ground up. The app has a new design, and in addition to standard sections (e.g. Playlists, Artists) includes a ‘Downloaded Music’ section. Not just that, the new app can also show song lyrics. There are new sections like “Recently Added,” so you can quickly access new music added to Apple Music. It suggests you curated daily playlists, The ‘Connect’ section lets you get updates from artists you follow. The ‘Browse’ sub-section. It can be used to browse for artists, check their top-charting songs, and more. The app also includes better functionality to listen to radio stations. Apple Music with iOS 10 is being redesigned for its 15 million paid subscribers, and “the music will be the hero,” according to Apple.
iOS 10 comes with a redesigned News app that automatically curates stories into easy to access sections. The all-new News interface design has some visual affinities with the new Music, showing that Apple is working on a cohesive look across its new apps, with bold, all-caps sans serif titles. The app can also serve breaking news updates and subscriptions in iOS 10.
iOS 10 expands the HomeKit framework with a new app called ‘Home’. HomeKit is now also built right into Apple’s swipe-up Control Center, so it can be accessed even from your iPhone’s lock screen. The Apple Watch will also include built-in home control support as well. The app includes a personalized experience and shows all your connected smart devices, which can be controlled right from the app. You can dim brightness, issue Siri voice commands (e.g. good morning) to automatically turn on/off lights. The app can be controlled via Apple Watch as well.
In iOS 10, you will now have voicemail transcriptions so that you can see what messages have been received without having to listen to them. New APIs make it possible to integrate extra functionalities to the phone app. For instance, the app can now detect when an unknown caller is potentially phone spam and will label those calls as such. Contact cards also get a design makeover with quicker access to the various contact channels for each contact.
With iOS 10, the most frequently used app iMessage is getting rich hyperlinks with previews, allowing shared videos can be played right inside the app as well. Messages will now allow you to increase the size of text to emphasize texting as either a yell or a whimper. You can draw handwritten notes and share/play music in-app so you never have to leave messages. Apple is making bigger emojis that are now three times large, and the keyboard can now identify words you can easily replace with emojis with a single tap on each word.
There will also be bubble effects so you can “say it loud” or say something “gently” with slow to existing texts. You can also use “invisible ink” that requires the message receiver to slide their finger over a text or photo. It’ll be a nice surprise or horrific shock from friends. Apple Music is integrated into Messages — can play a track right in line. And just like Maps and Siri, Messages are being opened up to developers with iMessage apps. iMessage will also be open to developers, so you can create separate apps layered on top of the messaging platform (basically, Facebook Messenger). This would make possible to create animated stickers and GIFs, integrate Apple Pay and more.
Other iOS 10 features include editable Live Photos, Split View in Safari on iPad. Live Photos are now performed with digital image stabilization and can be edited, while Safari on iPad is adding a new split-screen option in iOS 10. RAW photo editing is also part of the next version update. Live Photos also gets filters and some much-needed stabilization, the camera app launches even quicker, and you can choose whether iMessages uses read receipts by specific conversations.
iOS 10 will now allow users to delete the company’s built-in apps or preinstalled apps like Maps, Calculator, Music, Videos, etc. and download them again later. All of the major iOS apps are now visible within the App Store, and they’ve each got fleshed out descriptions and screenshots. However, certain apps like Messages, Photos, and Camera cannot be deleted, presumably because they’re tied too deeply to the system to be uninstalled.
iOS 10 will be available as a free update this fall for the following devices: iPhone 5 and higher, iPod touch 6th gen, iPad mini 2 and higher, and iPad 4th generation and the subsequent iPad Air and iPad Pro models.
Are you excited about the new iOS 10 features? Let us know in the comments below.