iOS 9 was announced at WWDC 2015 and comes equipped with some impressive new features, including better battery life, multi tasking capabilities and a smarter Siri.
Here is a roundup of whats new, plus our favourite features -
iOS 9 Design changes
After the huge design changes we saw in iOS 7, iOS 8 didn’t receive much of a visual overhaul, that trend has continued here. iOS 9 looks almost identical to iOS 8, but there are some differences –
Apple have replaced the system font Helvetica Neue with a new font Called San Fransisco. This new font may be familiar to some people as it is the system font used on the Apple Watch.
The small but noticeable change is a response to criticism of Helvetica Neue’s readability. The San Fransisco font should increase readability whilst retaining Apple’s minimalist philosophy.
Apple has made some impressive changes to the standard keyboard such as –
- Shift key now toggles all letters between upper and lower case
- Shortcut keys for cut and paste, to-do list formatting and extra formatting options
- A new smart cursor operation
Proactive Personal Assistant
In iOS 9 Siri makes an attempt to learn about your habits by suggesting tasks that may be predictable, Apple calls it “Proactive”. For example, if you open the Mail app every morning when you wake, Proactive will suggest this for you.
Proactive will also immediately open the Music app when you plug your headphones in.
Perhaps the best feature here is that when you receive a phone call from a number that is not saved with a contact, Proactive will search your emails and offer a hint as to who it may be.
iOS 9 builds on iOS 8’s limited ability to multitask. We now have three multi tasking options – Slide Over, Split View and Picture in Picture.
Slide Over allows you to open an app without leaving the app you’re currently in. For example you could be browsing the web, take down some notes, then easily slide back to the web app.
Split View divides the screen in two, and allows you to use two apps at the same time. Due to the processing power required, this feature is not available on some older iPads.
Picture in Picture allows you to watch a video or make a FaceTime call whilst using another app.
This replaces the current Newstand app and attempts to provide news stories based on your interests, plus suggests new topics or publisher channels.
The UI is impressive, you can view videos, plus search through the app’s vast range of topics.
Better Battery Life
Apple claims that this update uses apps and technologies that operate more efficiently and slightly improve the device’s battery life.
Also included is a “low power mode” which increases your battery life further. Obviously this comes at a cost, such as slower download speed, fetching of mail items, reduced motion and brightness, etc.
Previously a search on your device would yield limited results. Now the search function goes a little deeper, attempting to access more data within apps (if they support the feature).
iOS App Developers can access the operating system now, whilst consumers in Australia will have to wait until August – September to download it.