Last week, Apple took the wraps off iOS 9 — the next major software update for the iPhone and iPad.
Big changes include an improved version of Siri, an iPad split-screen mode, and new Maps features.
But there are tons of tidbits Apple didn’t mention. Now that developers with early access to the trial version have played with it, here are some other key features.
(These are based on the iOS 9 beta and could change before the final version is released).
Some iPhone users have complained that the iOS keyboard's current shift key makes it difficult to tell if you're typing in caps or lowercase since it blends in with the keyboard. But in iOS 9, when you tap the shift key the keyboard will appear in all capital letters. When you tap it again to return to lowercase, all of the letters will change to lowercase as well. In iOS 8, the keys remain in caps lock on the keyboard even when you're typing in lowercase, which can be confusing.
One of the biggest things developers seem to be excited about is the idea that app bundles are getting a lot smaller, which is known as app thinning. This means that you'll be able to download apps quickly while using less data to do so. Instead of downloading a really big app all at once, iOS 9 will download a condensed version quickly at first and then continue to install the rest of the app in the background. This will be especially important in emerging markets where internet connections are sluggish.
Apple is making a lot of improvements that make iOS even easier to use, and one way it's doing that is by making settings searchable. There's now a search bar in the settings menu that lets you easily find and access anything.
Apple is adding two more of its own apps to the iPhone by default: Find My Friends and Find My iPhone. These were previously available as optional downloads, but now they will automatically appear on your iPhone with iOS 9. The apps are two of several that Apple pre-loads on your iPhone by default, including Podcast, Apple Maps, Stock, and iBooks among others.
Apple is changing the system font in iOS to San Francisco, which initially debuted on the Apple Watch. Because it first appeared on the Apple Watch, it's clearly tailored to look clear and sharp on smaller displays. But, some developers on GitHub have already noticed how nice the font looks on large, crisp, Retina displays too, according to Fast Company.
It might not sound like a big deal, but it's important for security purposes. In the past, Apple asked for a four digit password by default. By upping that character count to six, it's trying to encourage you to create a stronger password that's harder to crack. Of course, this only functions as a backup if you're using Touch ID to unlock your phone.
In iOS 9, Apple is adding support for pinch to zoom in video. That means you'll be able to zoom in when watching videos the same way you would on a photo or a website.
Apple said that the low power mode in iOS 9 can add an hour of extra battery life to your iPhone. But now, a developer that goes by the name 'malstrom' on Imgur has posted a screenshot that shows the new Battery Usage screen in iOS 9. It tells you how long apps have been running on screen and in the background on your phone rather than just telling you how much of your battery it's consuming.
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