just a little Apple releases iOS 17 for iPhone, months before Apple launches Apple Vision Pro with the new operating system. Sure, 17 feels like a big number.
And in many ways, iOS has reached a point of stability and maturity that we’re all looking for. If you’re updating from iOS 16, you can rest assured. To be sure, iOS 17 brings changes both big and small. But iOS 17 isn’t a frustrating update. That’s good.
Low level changes
The two most visible changes at the operating system level are a new standby mode and new interactive widgets.
and standby mode, available to users even when they are not using their phone. If you have a MagSafe dock, you can place your phone horizontally and it will automatically start displaying quick, at-a-glance information.
There are three different ways to use standby mode. Two interactive widgets can be used side by side. iOS 17 uses the same widgets that are also available on the home screen. For example, you can put the weather forecast in the left widget and a list of upcoming calendar events in the right widget.
Similar to the home screen, you can also create stacks of widgets and circles through these widgets depending on the information you need. I don’t know why, but this summer when I was testing the beta version of iOS 17, I immediately fell in love with it.
If you receive a notification, you can view it in standby mode. You can also interact with Siri without having to flip your phone back to portrait orientation.
The other two modes are a full-screen clock and a photo mode that shuffles through your photo library or specific albums. This mode works especially well on HomePods that have a built-in display. Maybe next year…
When it comes to watches, there are five different styles to choose from. The idea here is that your iPhone could replace your old, dusty FM radio alarm clock. The screen also adapts to low light.
A major new feature has been added to the home screen. interactive widget. Over the past few years, the widget has become a big hit with his iPhone users. And Apple is repeating this success with new features that developers can leverage to create widgets with some basic forms of interaction.
Apple has already updated some of its widgets. For example, the new Home widget lets you trigger home accessories with just a tap, without having to open the Home app or use Siri. This is especially useful for blindfolding door locks. All of Apple’s content apps have also been updated to add interactivity for music, books, podcasts, and more.
Other low-level changes are more subtle. for example, keyboard Autocorrection using transformer language models for English, Spanish, and French has been improved and completely overhauled. Auto-corrected words are now underlined, so you can quickly find out if your iPhone has betrayed you behind your back (or behind your cursor).
and dictation Received annual upgrade. I was already using dictation for a lot of text messages, but without having to go back and forth between dictation and typing, I could dictate a few words, type a few words, and then dictate the rest of the sentence. It’s now possible and even easier to use.
High level changes
A new version of iOS usually means that almost all built-in Apple apps have also received updates. The common thread here is that many updates are focused on delivering features that improve quality of life.
for example, message The app has been significantly upgraded. Somehow, this field is constantly evolving, with WhatsApp, Telegram, and Apple adding new features every year. You can also draw inspiration from each other. For example, you can now swipe through individual messages in conversation threads and reply inline.
But there are some more important changes. Search functionality has been completely overhauled. It’s now much easier to type someone’s name, select that name, and search for keywords within a specific conversation.
Voice messages have also been improved. Finally, you can pause the recording and resume it later. You don’t have to stay in the app to listen to incoming messages. Additionally, voice messages are now automatically transcribed on your device. very good.
Another interesting new feature is check-ins. This is a messaging mini-app that helps you send messages to your loved ones when you safely return home. Many people tend to forget to send a quick text, so set up a check-in when you leave someone’s house and he’ll be automatically texted from his iPhone when he arrives at his destination. .
In terms of communication, face time It underwent two major changes. First, you can now leave a video message if someone doesn’t show up. Second, you can use FaceTime with your Apple TV by using your phone as a webcam and microphone.
And if you’re still making phone calls, you’ll be happy to hear that Apple has taken the time to update… phone App. You can now create contact posters. This is a full-screen representation of yourself that appears when you call someone.
Like your profile photo, contact posters are shared with your contacts when you start a conversation in iMessage. The editing screen is similar to the wallpaper editing feature introduced in iOS 16, allowing you to easily create something that looks great.
And even if you rarely answer your phone, you can now send incoming calls directly to your voicemail and read live transcriptions of your voicemail. If you’re a delivery person, you can change your mind and answer the phone.
For users apple map (In addition to me), Apple has finally added support for offline maps. This has been the biggest complaint of Google Maps users, and no more.
all the rest
I’m not going to list all the changes in iOS as this review would be too long. Once you start using your iPhone with iOS 17, you’ll notice small changes over time.
However, here is a quick list of some updates worth highlighting in the changelog.
- You can initiate an AirDrop by bringing two devices closer together. It also works with Contact Poster (Apple calls it NameDrop).
- AirDrop continues over the Internet, so you can leave the room during the AirDrop transfer.
- FindMy allows you to share your AirTags with other members of your household.
- Safari lets you create different profiles with separate tabs, history, and cookies.
- You can share your password and passkey with others. Goodbye, 1Password.
- If you use Apple Music in your car with CarPlay, other passengers can join your session and control the music. No subscription required.
- Improved EV routes in Apple Maps.
- iPhone automatically suggests nearby AirPlay speakers and TVs.
- AirPods have many improvements.
- The main search functionality has been redesigned. It takes a little getting used to, but it works well.
- A new mental health assessment has been added to the Healthcare app.
- Journal, Apple’s journaling app, is expected to be released later this year.
- You can say “Siri” instead of “Hey, Siri.”
Overall, iOS 17 is a nice and elegant update. It feels like a polished, stripped-down version of iOS 16. TL;DR, that’s an improvement.