Two days ago Apple revealed it’s newest mobile operating system revision, iOS 7, a huge and well needed overhaul to the mobile OS has been made and a number of notable new features have been added. There are also a few less-praised features added to iOS 7 which add a lot of functionality. Aside from the hundreds of new features, here are some of my favourite additions and modifications.
The compass minimalist redesign
The compass app has always been rather dull and straight forward, but with the revamp of iOS, Jony Ive gave the compass a minimalist makeover with added functionality. The compass now has a level feature which uses the iPhone’s accelerometer to detect how level the phone is. Just a small improvement to a little-used app which may give it some more usage.
Facetime handles voice calls
FaceTime is now separated out from the phone or contacts app with it’s own dedicated app. Along with the standard video and audio FaceTime, users can now talk using data. It’s surprising that the ability to just voice was not added with the inception of FaceTime, however perhaps AT&T would flat out block apple’s minute crushing application if it dove in at the deep end. FaceTime audio could be a real competitor to applications like Skype and Viber, especially if it were better integrated with Apple’s messaging service.
Call and message blocking
An overdue feature for iOS has been the ability to block certain numbers from calling and messaging you. Call blocking and privacy is a big business on android yet it is handled by third party apps, iOS uses native blocking to stop annoyances, will we be able to interface with this through applications? I should hope so, apps with databases to block cold callers and sales reps would be well received in my opinion.
Live updating icons
This is a feature I have personally desired for a long time, ever since jailbreaking my first generation iPod touch, I have been constantly tweaking the Clock and Weather app icons to update live to show a real time representation of what’s going on. It seems to be a no-brainer but it’s taken Apple a while to cotton on. Even if only the Clock icon is updating for now, it’s still a start and hopefully 3rd party applications will be able to depict a live representation of data on their icons too.
Easily accessible settings
The new addition of easy-access settings which are accessible by swiping up from the bottom of the screen is greatly appreciated. The feature heavily reminds me of SMBSettings which is an app for Jailbroken iOS devices. Easy-access settings allow the user to modify connectivity settings such as toggle Wifi or Bluetooth, as well as change the display brightness or toggle screen rotation. Apple has also added a ‘torch’ feature which turns your camera’s LED light on to help you see in the dark, a stopwatch shortcut, calculator shortcut and camera shortcut. This added feature is going to be very helpful for every day use, I often want to quickly turn down the brightness of my phone when entering dark places and easy-access settings will aid this.
Image credits: Apple.com; all other images have been linked to their appropriate sources.