Apple has officially wrapped off iOS 8,at its WWDC 2014 developer conference in San Francisco on Monday.The update includes some noticeable user interface and design changes from iOS 7 while maintaining the same design language.It is considered as the biggest update to Apple’s mobile operating system since the company launched the App Store in 2008.
Apple’s iOS 8 is indeed a huge update since the company launched the App Store in 2008. It stands out with being as much about end users, as it is about developers. Ordinary users will note new features like the new Health hub application, Siri’s expanded functionality, the added support for custom keyboards, for widgets (limited, but still… widgets on iOS!), interactive “actionable” notifications… Developers, on the other hand, will have to master the new Swift coding language, work on embedding TouchID where appropriate, and so much more.
Tim Cook describes iOS 8 as “a huge release” that actually has two stories: one with a ton of new features for end users and the other rich on new capabilities for developers. Starting with the user side of things, you can now respond to incoming messages directly from the notification drop-down, and you no longer need to exit the app you’re already in.
We have filtered out few remarkable features of iOS 8 from Cupertino giants.
Health is the new app announced by Apple to venture into the fitness tracking space.The concept is similar to Apple’s Passbook app, the iPhone’s virtual pocket for things like airline boarding passes, movie tickets and coupons. The Health app will be able to pull in data from other third-party apps such as Nike to keep all your health-related information in one hub.
Developers will use a service called HealthKit to integrate their apps with the Health app.
HomeKit will essentially turn the iPhone into a remote control for the home.It will allow users to users to control locks, lights, cameras, doors, thermostats, plugs and switches via one iOS 8 app, without the need for multiple apps to control each device or function.Although iOS 8 doesn’t come out until the fall, the beta test (available now) will encourage developers to create software and products that will work with HomeKit.
Interactive notifications lets users to directly from the pull-down notification center in iOS 8, without leaving the app you are currently in. The new system in iOS 8 was demonstrated with an eBay widget in the pull-down notification center, which informed the user on the progress of a guitar bidding process. You can place your bid straight from the notification center, too, which adds interactive elements to the widget experience, and increases their usage tremendously.
Quicktype is an alternative keyboard in iOS 8 with suggestive typing with context awareness. Typing learning is private to the device so not shared or accessible by others; securely implemented.
Family Sharing feature allows to set up your family as a “unit,” so that you can share calendars, reminder lists, and also purchased media — allowing a family to download content across six family members who share the same credit card. If a child in that family wants to buy an app, the purchase can then be authenticated by an adult family member from their iOS 8-powered devices.
Siri is the closer for iOS 8, and it’s a pretty big one. You can now activate Siri without touching the phone, which I have actually been praying for since she arrived, by simply saying “Hey Siri.” Siri also now has Shazam integration, the ability to purchase content from iTunes, streaming voice recognition, and comes in 22 new dictation languages.
New Mail features and Gestures control
Mail might not be the most used communication application anymore, but that didn’t prevent Apple to intro a few enhancements, like the ability to send up to 5 GB attachments via iCloud Drive, and gesture navigation. With a swipe gesture you can now send an email to the trash, flag it, or see more details about it.
iMessage is the most used app on the iPhone, hands down. So they’ve spent some time working on the way we message each other.With Group Messages, you can name the thread, add and remove people, and set Do Not Disturb on a per-person basis within a thread.Apple has also added audio messages, which you can send by swiping left on a little beacon on the right of the typing window.
Group messaging allows us to name the threads, add and remove participants, set personalized Do Not Disturbs, and leave threads. Not only that, but you can easily record and send a voice text, stream a video, or share your location mid-convo, and all can be done within the new messaging app.
Spotlight is the new iOS 8 search function now enables you to search for almost everything, like news, apps installed on the device, points of interest, and even iTunes songs.Overall, it drags in more data from additional sources, and makes the overall search feature better, faster, and easier to use.
iCloud Drive is a Dropbox-like (or Google Drive-like) service for storing and sharing of files and multimedia, as well as syncing them across OS X, iOS, and even Windows devices. Apple also announced two new iCloud plans: 20GB for $0.99 a month and 200 GB for $3.99 a month.
Photos app is receiving the next “massive” update in iOS 8. You can now store more photos in the cloud than you can have in your device alone, thanks to the new iCloud Drive service.And not only do these devices sync edits, photos, and devices, but they have new Smart Editing features that let you do some pretty amazing edits to both Photos and Videos.
Apple has added a more advanced search within the Photos app that includes auto-suggestions from more recently taken photos, recently viewed, etc.
Handoff is an extension to AirDrop means that you’ll be able to start an email on any Apple device and pick up where you left off on another Apple device. The feature will work with Apple Mail, messaging through iMessage, tab syncing through Safari, and it will even allow you to make and receive calls on your Mac, while the call is run through your iPhone as a relay. Handoff will make it very easy to connect your Mac to an automatic hotspot created on your iPhone, too.