With most anticipation, today Apple unveiled a totally new design of its mobile operating system that powers the company iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. iOS 7.0 is a major departure from the previous versions from the UI perspective as well as the functions and looks of its native apps.
“iOS 7 is the biggest change to iOS since the introduction of the iPhone.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook
The changes come under pressure of competition.The Cupertino giant has put Jony Ive in charges for the overall design. Jony Ive, an industrial disigner guru, took over that position from the departed Scott Forstall .
With simpler, flatter home screen icons and a thinner typography for the entire platform, the changes are subtle enough to not alienate existing customers but wide enough to drive updates. Jony Ive on the new design
Indeed, the design shown at WWDC, demonstrates freshness and elegance. The overall theme is accented with black fonts on white background added with an enough dose blur and translucent overlaid color images. it appeared to have enough color for “depth and vitality,”
The newly designed icons are flat and placed in front of color background image that offers a 3D-like depth changing by the way you hold the device. The best way is to see it live to appreciate the subtlety.
Below are few notable changes.
Multitasking: Double clicking the home button will reveal the icons as well as the smaller screenshots of the app on top. Apps can update while remain in the Background based on “intelligence scheduling” and network conditions.
Control Center: Swipe up from the bottom of the device to make change common setting tasks including volume, brightness, airline, Bluetooth, WiFi,..as well as turning on/off a flashlight .
Camera: photo taking can start with regular, square, panoramic formats and new color filters have been added. Photo browsing app is enabled with auto-organized feature by place, event, moment, year, month, etc..
Weather App: New changes include current weather condition background animation.
Mail App: actionable swipe gesture available on each email
Siri: the voice assistance gets smarter with the ability to control device hardware features including turning on/off WiFi, Bluetooth as well as interacting with Wikipedia, Twitter, and Microsoft Bing search results. Additional voices can be added including male voices.
AirDrop: the Mac feature that allows sharing files with nearby computer is added. The feature apparently is limited to the latest devices equipped with advanced WiFi.
Safari: New full-screen interface, with a “smart search” field with a drop-down field. It includes iCloud Keychain, enabling cloud-based password synchronization, and a brand new page navigation interface.
iOS in the Car: Apple now gives this feature a name. iOS 7 is now integrated with your car dashboard screen with a standard unified interface instead of the car manufacture own design.
iTunes Radio: is a new ad support music streaming service similar to Pandora with iTunes purchase option . The service starts in the US with promise of more support for other countries coming later.
Activation lock: In case of lost or stolen. AppleID is required to unlock even the device is reset completely from scratch.
App update: will be automatic and dynamically activated
The new version in Beta has been released to developers starting today. iOS 7 for consumer will be available in Fall 2013 after the release of the new iPhone, we assume.
iOS 7 will be offered as free upgrade to existing iPhone 4, 4S, 5; the iPad 2 and later, the iPad mini, and the iPod touch (4th generation) and later.