Apple has announced the next version of its phone operating system, iOS 14 at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2020. The event was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new iOS comes with major changes from the older versions as it boasts of a full list of new features and apps to better the iPhone experience.
The iOS 14 will be released later this year but there is currently no official release date.
Apple usually releases the new version of iOS in September, just before the release of its latest iPhone. However, with the impact of COVID-19 on production schedules, there is a possibility of a slight change this year.
Based on revelations at the conference, here are some of the significant features and changes to expect when you finally get iOS 14 on your iPhone this year.
New Home Screen with App Library
The home screen of Apple’s operating system is finally changing. The iOS 14 will now allow you to easily clean up your iPhone’s home screen by either removing apps from the home screen or eliminate an entire screen. This is the most significant change to the iPhone’s home screen in years.
The apps removed from the home screen will remain in the App Library. The library automatically groups all your apps together into big folders like Social, Health & Fitness, etc. The first two boxes show suggested apps based on your time, location and recently used apps. The App Library is located one swipe past the last home screen.
New Widgets experience
Apple has completely changed the widget experience in its latest iOS 14. Widgets which is a simple vertical list of full-width boxes on the screen to the left of your first home screen (Today Screen) will now have more information and a bunch of new sizes you can explore.
Also, you will be able to now drag widgets from Today view onto your home screen and set it to automatically show you the widget you are most likely to need throughout the day.
New Picture-in-picture mode for videos
iPhone will finally be getting picture-in-picture mode with the new iOS 14. You will now be able to continue watching a video or talking on a facetime call even if you swipe back to the home screen as picture-in-picture mode will continue to play your video in a little box.
The video box can be moved around the screen or swiped off to the side to become a little tab, with the audio continuing to play. The new feature makes it easy to keep using your iPhone for other things while watching videos.
New Siri interface
Instead of a full-screen takeover when using Siri, iOS 14 has a new interface that shows a “blob” at the bottom of your display. The results from Siri will show as a rich notification at the top of your screen.
Messages app Upgrade
Apple has added a new upgrade to its messaging app in the latest iOS. You can now pin up to nine conversations at the top of your Messages. This will make it easier to prioritize messages and conversations.
Group conversations are also getting an upgrade. Images of everyone in the group will be available with the most recent people first. Conversations can now have a name and a cover image.
Other additions include in-line message reply, direct messaging by mentioning their name and setting messages to only notify when your name is mentioned.
New App Clips Feature
Apple is introducing a new class of apps called App Clips which lets you use parts of an app without having to download the full version. The application removes the need to download, install, and sign in to a big app to do simple things like payments or purchase.
On the developer’s end, Apple says they have to create an App Clip when they make their app, making sure the experience is under 10MB in size so it downloads and opens quickly. Developers are also encouraged to use Sign in with Apple and Apple Pay so you don’t need to log in or create accounts.
With iOS 14, you can use App Clips via the web, Maps, Messages, NFC tags, or QR codes. There is also a new “App Clip code” that will let you know when an App Clip is available.
Apple is adding a lot of new options including nose mask Memoji’s to make it easier for you to express yourself.
7 new hairstyles, 16 new pieces of headwear, three new Memoji stickers, face coverings and an expanded range of ages.
The Memoji’s have also been refined with new facial and muscles structure to make them more expressive.
Following the rollout of new map data to the entire United States last year, more countries will be getting new map data this year. Also, cycling directions that can take into account elevation changes, bike lanes, and stairs will be added.
Maps will be adding a specialized electric vehicle routing feature that lets you add your vehicle to your iPhone and let you keep track of the current charge in the car. It also shows compatible charging points on route to your destination.
Your AirPods will now be able to automatically to switch between devices running iOS 14, iPadOS 14, watchOS 7 and macOS Big Sur when they are released.
If you have AirPods Pro, you’ll be treated to new virtualized spatial audio for any source encoded in 5.1, 7.1, or Dolby Atmos. Apple uses motion detection to compare the movement of your head to the movement of your portable device in order to make sure the sound always stays oriented toward the screen, not to the way your head is facing.
Compact incoming calls
Calls on iOS which used to take over the entire screen have been collapsed into small, compact notification pop-ups in the new iOS 14. Also, voice call, FaceTime call, or VOIP apps like Skype will now show as a small dropdown notification that you can simply swipe away to ignore.
Safari will be getting several upgrades in the latest iOS 14. According to Apple, the browser will be faster and more secure. You will be able to access privacy reports for websites and Apple will monitor saved passwords to see if any have been involved in recent data breaches.
Also, direct web page translation into English, Spanish, Chinese, French, German, Russian, or Brazilian Portuguese without third party service has been added.
The Translate app
iPhone now has its own version of the Google Translate app. The new iOS has a first-party app called Translate which makes conversational translation easy in 11 major languages.
You can easily translate conversations now by just selecting two languages and clicking the microphone button on the app. Translate will listen to your voice and provide text and voice translations. You can also use it offline by downloading the language to your device.
CarPlay and Car Keys
Apple’s car interface has some improvements in the latest iOS. There are new categories of apps allowed like EV charging and packing apps. Also, there is a location sharing option and feature that lets you change the background wallpaper.
Apart from the car interface, Apple is adding a standardized version of digital car keys to your iPhone. With iOS 14, you can use NFC to unlock your car and start it and can share limited digital car keys with others through Messages.
However, You will need a new-generation car like BMW, Tesla or Ford to take advantage of this feature.
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