Apple at WWDC (WorldWide Developer Conference) 2016 keynote in San Francisco has released the biggest update to their mobile platform, iOS. The new iOS 10 packs in ten new incredible features on it. We discuss them briefly in this article. Note that the new iOS 10 will be available coming this fall new the Cupertino giant unveils the iPhone 7.
The first feature that iOS 10 touts is about the user experience, now with new OS you can just raise the phone and it wakes up to show the lock screen. It is something we know on other platforms, but it’s good to finally have this on iPhones. The iOS can now act on notifications from the lock screen that is using 3D Touch. Well, many phones do that already in Android system. You can stay in the conversation right on the lock screen. Now that is something we would like to try out. Interestingly you can see live updates from apps once you click in with 3D Touch. These changes are quite welcoming, makes lock screen and notification.
SIRI is Open for Developers
Yes. You read it correct. Now Siri is finally open for Developers. The assistant feature that we have been seeing on iOS is now available for developers to play around and thus empowering developers to make changes according to their needs. For instance, at WWDC stage demo it was showcased that you can now just ask Siri, “Send a WeChat to Nancy” and you’ll see a WeChat UI opened in the Siri environment. Isn’t it interesting, as this new development feature will allow you to run your apps in the Siri environment.
Currently, there are supports for various apps like Messaging for Slack, WeChat and WhatsApp, while Ridebooking for Uber, Lyft and Didi. Photo Search in Shutterfly, Pinterest. Other interesting usage that is currently available is for pausing and stopping workouts in Rutastic and RunKeeper, as well as payment with Square, VoIP calling with Spark, Vonage and Skype. Note that it works with Carplay too, which is a big deal. It is possibly the biggest update for the Siri since the virtual assistant was first launched. With third-party AIs leapfrogging Siri, it can be said that Apple was forced to play this hand.
iOS 10 introduces QuickType, which brings Siri Intelligence to the keyboard. Using deep learning technology, it can now tell the difference between “the Orioles are playing in the playoffs” and “the children are playing in the park”. The exact term used here for deep learning is the LSTM, i.e. Long Short Term Memory, it is a field of deep learning. Apple is saying that all this deep learning is local to your phone, for obvious security reasons. Although, it’s not yet clear where this deep learning is happening, as well as how long this information is going to be retained for. Note that Siri can suggest you to share current collation, relevant contact info, calendar availability and look up for movies and restaurants right when the conversation is happening. It is Apple’s answer to Google’s Gboard, which allows instant searching for many things include GIFs, Emojis and more. Additionally now you don’t have to change keyboard for switch language, as this keyboard supports Multilingual typing. Say bye to keyboard switching on iOS now.
There are a major update to Photos app on iOS, which does seems like on line with Google Photos, which was introduced by Mountain View company last year. Apple is finally catching up with them this year. Using that deep learning, the Photos app can now categorize the images based on facial recognition, and it is all done locally just like deep learning for Siri, thus taking advantage of the processing power. Don’t know how this will affect the battery or performance, as it is too early to tell. The app will now cluster all the relevant moment captured together, such as trips to mountains and rivers. It will use the advanced computer vision technology to categorize similar objects and scene together.
The Apple Maps is getting all new design; Mr Cue said that the new Maps is more proactive. The new maps are focused on offering cleaner and detailed interface, rather than more predictive stuff like Siri and Photos. Thus, you can expect Maps to offer nearby restaurant suggestions and note that its redesigned look is extended to navigation. So, you should expect a proactive alternative route if there is a traffic ahead in the current route. Of course, if you are wondering, it is a part of Apple CarPlay, you’ll get turn-by-turn directions right into your car’s instrument. Just like Siri, Maps is now also opened to Developers, thus allowing them to make use of extensions.
Cupertino giant is doing a lot of redesign this year and that is why it is being called as the biggest update so far. Apple Music, is also getting a refresh, a redesign from the ground up, as quoted by Eddy Cue. It brings much cleaner interface and claims music its king, which should have been the case on the old UI. By redesigning its Music app within the launch of a year, company indirectly admits that its old interface was quite complex. Though, we noticed that tabs at the bottom appear to be unchanged; Library, For You, Browse, Radio and Search. Company demoed the app at stage and they touted that artwork looks much more vibrant and there are lyrics as well if you don’ the Rap as audience didn’t for the song playing at event.
This app was launched last year only and is getting its first major update now in the iOS 10. There is a revamped News interface design that has some visual accord with Apple Music. It seems like Apple is looking for a cohesive look across all of its apps this year. All the redesigned apps features bold, all caps sans-serif titles. It is also getting breaking news notifications and subscription options in iOS 10. If you didn’t knew, In-app subscriptions are major new feature for the operating system, which extends even beyond Apple’s own apps.
Apple Home is company’s first new major app announcement at today’s WWDC keynote. It is build over the company’s HomeKit infrastructure, which lets you manage and control everything connected as well as compatible accessories in your house. Do make a note that the HomeKit is now built right into Apple’s swipe-up Control Center. Thus, allowing it to be accessible even from iPhone’s lock screen. For Apple Watch users, the home control function would be built right into the Watch as well.
Phone App, which is essentially a Dialer app on the iPhone is getting some improvements in the iOS 10. The app will now able to showcase the transcripts of the voicemail so that you can see what messages have been received without having to listen to them. Moreover, the app is now suitable to detect whenever an unknown caller is on the other side of the phone, it will be potentially marked as spam and will label them as such. Though, I’m worried if it will accurately understand that or not, will know more when we test it later this fall.
Apple is playing catch up. The messages service, which is the most widely used app on iOS is finally getting rich links in the new version. Thus, it will allow items like videos to play inside the message. There are now three times bigger emojis, which was much to delight the crowd. In this new message app, you can emojify the words by just tapping and automatically turning into emoji. It was also introduced by Google in Allo messaging app at their I/O 2016 event last month. There is something called Bubble effects coming to messages app, they are just cute animations. It is interesting to note that Apple Music is integrated into messages, thus, allowing you to play a song right in line. Similar to the Siri and Maps, Messages are now opened up to developers with iMessage apps.