Apple rolled out its new OS version for mobile platforms, iOS 7 last night. The update will make iOS 7, one of the most popular mobile OS in the world in a single night. iOS 7 is also what will be pre-installed on all iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s devices that are sold.This is where Apple with it’s well organised and linear ecosystem delivers brilliantly. I do not have an iPhone but do have an iPad Mini, which I updated with iOS 7 over the night. I was not entirely convinced about the new design from the images and videos I had seen before but I must say, Apple did a decent job with it.
So who will really love iOS 7?
The software update is radical. The design change is radical yet it seems familiar. Ideally when such a radical redesign takes place, people can dislike it for too many changes. I do not think anyone familiar who is already a iPhone or iPad user will dislike iOS 7.
Would I throw my Android away?
No. iOS 7 might be a radical design change but it hardly changes anything else. I does not open up the OS for 3rd party apps like Android does and that simply means a Android fan will not be convinced by iOS 7.
What has changed with iOS 7?
There are many UI changes, most of them pleasing to the eye. The design itself is flatter and Apple finally gets rid of the overly done three dimensional icons and layout. The wallpapers are in two versions “Still” and “Dynamic”. Some of the dynamic wallpapers (another word for parallax) are quite terrible but darker or very light colours work well.
I noticed that the battery on my iPad Mini was draining marginally faster while using a dynamic wallpaper but I have not been on iOS 7 long enough to be absolutely sure.
There are changes with SIRI. This is where I am very disappointed with Apple. SIRI might be finally out of Beta but it is miles behind something like Google Now. The updated SIRI on iOS 7 works better than it was on iOS 6. It also allows you to change the gender for the voice for SIRI. But these upgrades are really unnecessary.
SIRI is advertised as a great search tool but it hardly works all that well. I cannot use SIRI to send an email from my Gmail app (though I can fire up the app with SIRI) and it is hardly useful for local searches in India. SIRI ends up being a glorified toy and simply is not compelling enough. The big improvement to SIRI in iOS7 is that it could understand my accent a lot better.
The apps from Apple all get a nice upgrade. I liked the Calendar app’s design and it seems simply very easy to use than it was before. It still will be useless for many if they use Google Calendars but it integrates with Facebook events pretty well.
The photos and camera apps are also very good upgrades. The camera is easy to manage and photo editing options now include filters. I am not sure how useful they will be on a iPad Mini but phone users will like the new filters. All the apps get a new design and some improved features except iBooks. But Apple does not need to mess around with iBooks UI as it works absolutely to near perfection as it is.
Talking about apps, iOS 7 improves the way we can move from one app to another or remove some of the apps running in the background. Simply press the home button twice and slide through sideways from app to app. Slide an app upwards and it is closed. Sliding through from one app to another is something I really find useful on my Nexus phone. So this basically makes the whole UI a lot more fluid.
Earlier it was not easy to quickly put your iPhone or iPad in “Airplane” mode or reduce the screen brightness unless you went to settings. Now users can slide upwards from the edge of the screen to open quick settings like putting device on “Airplane” mode or adjusting brightness and volume in a single motion.
If you are a iPhone or iPad users for a long time, you are going to love this upgrade. Basically the changes on iOS 7 fix a lot of things that needed fixing. People who are on the the Apple ecosystem will love it. People who are not necessarily on the Apple ecosystem entirely might find this upgrade, old wine in a new bottle.
Have you upgraded to the new iOS 7 version? Do drop in your opinions in your comments.