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Do ‘iWant’ iOS7?

After much excitement, Apple has finally released its brand-spanking new iOS7 software. But how does it compare to its IOS predecessors on both iPhones and iPads?

The first and most striking difference is the design of the home screen. Taking on a more minimalistic feel, the software features new, pastel like, ‘flat’ images for its apps and more shortcuts. However, this thorough design change may not be seen as a winning favourite for all consumers.

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The most useful shortcut to note is the simple swipe upwards which allows you access to the most commonly used settings. From this menu you can turn on flight mode, change the brightness, switch on the torch and adjust your Wi-fi and Bluetooth settings. This new shortcut has certainly made it easier for individuals, but there are still numerous other settings that people need to access just as easily. What if you are a user that constantly changes the phones wallpaper? You’re probably going to head into settings to do that, so you are quite likely to change the rest of your settings there too.

Another minor but helpful change is the way in which you close your apps. Most people don’t realise that their apps are running constantly unless closed properly which consequently, can have a significant impact on your phones battery life. Previously, buttons had to be pressed, apps had to be tapped and in truth, it was a bit confusing. On IOS7 all you need to do is double click the home button and swipe upwards to close an app. In addition to this, content within the apps will refresh even if you are not using it, eliminating the need for a refresh once it’s opened, a handy feature for those times when you need to access information quickly.

The design of the calendar app has also changed significantly. If like myself, you use your iPad and iPhone as your diary for personal appointments and events, you may appreciate the new scroll design. Rather than flicking through like a real calendar, you can now scroll down the page and view throughout the months rather than just month-by-month.

2013-09-20 16.55.07All of the standard apps that come included with Apple products have all undergone major design changes. Simplicity seems to be the new theme, with apps taking on a more refreshing style, similar to (may i say), Samsung’s app icons.

One of the more long-awaited features is the new photo and video view. Not only have the two been segregated which can make it easier to find an old video. But iOS7 now gives your photos a date and location (at last), which is great for those times when you want to find a picture quickly.

Another main feature is the ‘zoom out’ effect that takes over every time you unlock the screen or open and close apps. Although this feature is quite aesthetically pleasing and appears rather futuristic, it can make you feel a bit queasy if you are quickly opening and closing different applications. Other minor features include the fading in of the screen when accessing your phone and when you unlock the screen, the screen moves across to the keypad in a smoother, flowing motion as opposed to a sudden swipe. There also 2013-09-20 16.02.39appears to be a more ‘bubble-like’ aspect to IOS7, with the keypad and contact images circular and not square. In IOS6 and other previous softwares the dial screen consisted of numbers in a grid. Now however, Apple has implemented a vintage design of each number being encased in a circle, much like a traditional telephone.

Siri has also undergone a slight cosmetic change, a dynamic sound wave responds to the sound of your voice, and Siri has a far more natural sounding tone. Siri can do practically anything and everything now, without you having to lift a finger. Search Twitter, send messages, schedule appointments or even help you find your way home. Who needs a PA anymore?

iTunes Radio, or iRadio, is one of the aspects of the iOS7 that got most people excited, but unfortunately, it is currently only available in the US. This has stunted some excitement for the new software as it was set to be an innovative idea that recaptured one of the original concepts of Apple products, music.

Airdrop is another new feature to the iOS7 software, although I am still struggling to understand how to use it, it allows you to send pictures, videos and other media to nearby iOS7 users, even if they aren’t on your contacts. Similarly, Airplay is another futuristic-like feature that allows you to play or show whatever is on your device through your Apple TV – should you have it. It eliminates the need for HDMI cables and all the hassle that comes with them. You can even play slideshows of photos and videos instead of having to transfer them to a DVD before viewing.

iCloud has undergone developments to make it even easier to use than before. Applications have been adapted to make opening your files from different locations much easier. For example, the Pages app now allows you to edit documents on a Mac and registers when a file has been edited on a different piece of software. It will then ask you which version you would like to keep, or whether you would like to keep both.

The location of certain aspects to the iPhone has also changed. Although minor, it can be frustrating just trying to find where things are. The search bar is a prime example of this,  where rather than swiping to the right, you now swipe in a downward motion anywhere on the home screen. The iOS7 software has also placed more focus on ‘gestures’, which are already heavily used on iPad and Mac devices. You can now swipe to the right instead of using the back button when you are checking mail, messages, or would like to go back a page on Safari.

IOS7 brings about a quite astonishing change where certain features are more simplistic and easy to use. Only time will tell if people decide to make the change or not.  As the saying goes, why fix something that isn’t broken?

By Content Manager – Astrid Hall – @AstridGiraffeSM

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