Apple Unveils iOS 7, 'Biggest Change Since the Original iPhone'

6/10/2013

At WWDC 2013, Apple has officially unveiled the next generation of iOS, iOS 7.

Apple CEO Tim Cook introduced iOS 7, calling it "the biggest change to iOS since the introduction of the iPhone."

As rumored, iOS 7 has a less skeuomorphic look, with a more flat design and lots of whites tinged with color. That doesn't mean, however, that iOS is free from gradient or panache. Instead, it's a more modern take on what makes iOS, iOS.

Control Center

New in iOS 7 is a Control Center. An area that can be activated from within any app that brings control to WiFi, brightness and other frequently accessed settings.

From Control Center you can access a flashlight, start a song, toggle AirPlay and more.

Multitasking

iOS 7 will bring better multitasking and background processing to all apps. iOS 7 will monitor what apps you use frequently to help determine what apps need more full-functioning multitasking. When apps send push notifications, for instance, the phone will know to start to give that app background processing so that it work more quickly and intuitively.

Apple has taken a major cue from webOS (RIP) and added full-previews of runnings apps for multitasking. No more tiny icons!

Safari

Safari for iOS 7 has a new look and feel more similar to Chrome on iOS, we must say including a new tabbed view. It also integrates with iCloud Keychain for password management.

The unified search menu - which was removed with iOS 3.0, is back. There is also access to shared links and reading list improvements also shown off with OS X Mavericks.

Tabs are now 3D and fully integrated with iCloud tabs. Users are no longer limited to eight tabs (hooray) and can be reordered or removed with a swipe.

AirDrop

Apple is bringing OS X's AirDrop to iOS. AirDrop will let users share photos or files peer-to-peer with other iOS users nearby. "No bumping required."

AirDrop will only work on iOS devices running the latest wireless chipsets, which means the iPhone 5, fourth generation iPad, iPad mini, and the latest iPod touch.

Photos and Camera

The Camera and Photo apps received a major overhaul. Not only is it easier to manage large numbers of photographs, users can now create Shared Photostreams think group albums that other users can post into and share with others.

Users can also share video with iCloud Photostreams in iOS 7.

Visually, the app looks similar to the latest Flickr redesign and is less focused on 4x4 grids of thumbnails and offers users a better look at their photographs.

Siri

Siri has a new look AND a new voice. Users can choose between male and female voices for Siri. Siri is also getting smarter, it will now pull in data from Twitter, Wikipedia and Bing.

iOS in the Car

Apple is going to bring iOS to the dashboard of your car. Support for iOS in the car will be coming to Honda, Mercedes, Nissan, Chevy, Kia, Volvo, Acura and others.

New App Store

The App Store has a new design and will show apps that are popular nearby, as well as apps popular with your friends. The best part? Your apps now update automatically.

Music and iTunes Radio

The Music app gets the same visual overhaul as the rest of the system but the big feature with music and iOS 7 is iTunes Radio. Think of it as a hybrid between Pandora and Songza, built-into iOS.

Users can listen to theme-centric playlists or stations ("Songs for summer") or listen to artist-centric stations. And like Last.fm, iTunes Radio keeps track of all the stuff you listen to across iTunes, Apple TV and on iOS 7.

It's free with ads and iTunes Match subscribers get it free without ads.

More

  • Notification Sync

  • Audio-only Facetime

  • Weibo Integration in China

  • Per-app VPN for Enterprise

Plus more than 1500 APIs, support for third-party game controllers, new multitasking APIs.

Apple is also introducing a feature called Activation Lock, which will prevent thieves from activating your iPhone on another network unless they know your iCloud password.

Coming This Fall

Developers will have access to iOS 7 today and it will hit iOS devices this fall.

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