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What’s the Latest iPhone Update? A Guide to the New Apple iOS 7 Features

Apple’s iOS 7, the newest software update for the iPhone and iPad, is set to officially release — on September 10th September 18th. In the never-ending competition of which operating system is better, iOS or Android, Apple has stepped up its game with this update. Apple completely overhauled the operating system, and moved to a flat design that claims to make things more useful and simpler — yet still keeps familiarity of the old OS.

[videopost src='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0ErUMeT7uE&feature=share&list=UUE_M8A5yxnLfW0KghEeajjw']

 

What does Apple say about iOS 7?

Nothing we’ve ever created has been designed just to look beautiful. That’s approaching the opportunity from the wrong end. Instead, as we reconsidered iOS, our purpose was to create an experience that was simpler, more useful, and more enjoyable — while building on the things people love about iOS. Ultimately, redesigning the way it works led us to redesign the way it looks. Because good design is design that’s in service of the experience.Learn about the new features, upgrades, and which iOS devices are compatible with iOS 7:

  • Guide to iOS 7 1 of 16
    ios7

    Apple has reinvented their iPhone operating system with iOS 7. Here are the features and upgrades that you'll want to know about.

  • Control Center 2 of 16
    control-center

    All of your main settings are available in the control center with a swipe up from any screen. You can turn on/off Airplane mode, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Do Not Disturb. Lock your screen's orientation or adjust its brightness. Play, pause, or skip a song. Connect to AirPlay-enabled devices. And quickly access your flashlight, timer, calculator, and camera. That's right — a flashlight is now built in!

  • Simplicity 3 of 16
    simplicity

    Simplicity is everywhere in the new iOS 7. The interface is unobtrusive — unnecessary bars and buttons have been removed. The focus is now on your content.

  • Easy Access 4 of 16
    one-swipe

    The apps you use most will be easy to access. No more scrolling through endless screens to find an app you just used.

  • Safari 5 of 16
    safari-redesigned

    You may just drop Chrome when you see the new Safari for iOS 7. Browsing is bigger. Buttons are hidden until revealed with a swipe. Scrolling forward and back can be done with a swipe. And check out how slick the multi-tab browsing appears (photo on the right).

     

  • AirDrop 6 of 16
    airdrop

    Sending photos and documents can now be done via AirDrop. AirDrop allows you to quickly and easily share videos, photos, and contacts with a tap of the share button. Transfers are encrypted so your shares are secure.

  • Photo Album 7 of 16
    moments

    Photo album has been redesigned to now include collections, moments, and years. These are smart groupings of your photos and videos based on time and place.

  • Photos 8 of 16
    photos

    In addition to the new photo user interface, photos now offers filters and the option to shoot a picture in square mode (hello, Instagram!).

     

  • Multitasking 9 of 16
    multitasking

    While multitasking on the iPhone isn't something new, the way it will be handled in iOS 7 is. Apple has made multitasking smarter by learning the apps that you like to use and updating your content before you launch. Apple gives the following example:

    So if you tend to check your favorite social app at 9:00 a.m. every day, your feed will be ready and waiting for you. That's multitasking in iOS 7. It knows what you want to do before you do.

  • Apple Radio 10 of 16
    apple-radio

    Apple goes all Pandora with the new Apple Radio. Like Pandora, Apple Radio learns what you like and plays songs similar to such. Apple Radio offers the ability to purchase a song while listening to it. Apple Radio also works with Siri. "Siri, who sings this?" "Siri, play more like this." "Siri, skip this."

  • Siri 11 of 16
    siri

    Siri is getting a facelift as well! You can now choose between a man or woman's voice. An audio animation shows on screen to show that Siri recognizes your voice. All Siri responses will show on the Siri screen rather than pulling you into Safari. Siri searches using Bing, and now can search Wikipedia and Twitter.

  • Messages 12 of 16
    messenger

    Messages now features a clean blue and grey palette — no more green!

  • Mail 13 of 16
    mail

    From this screenshot of the new Mail app, you can see the removal of the top black bar. The on-screen keyboard is large and legible. The buttons blend nicely into the design but are still very functional.

  • Dimension 14 of 16
    dimension

    The new iOS 7 features translucency and layers to establish a hierarchy when using multiple apps.

  • Find My iPhone 15 of 16
    find-my-iphone

    Find My iPhone has been a great tool for finding your lost iPhone (or iPad, iTouch, etc.). iOS 7 hosts a new security feature that makes it harder for someone to use or sell your device. To erase or turn off Find My iPhone, you have to know the Apple ID and password assigned to the device. Before a device can be reactivated, an Apple ID and password is required.

  • iOS 7 Compatible Devices 16 of 16
    ios7-devices

    Wondering if your device supports the new operating system? Here is a list of the Apple devices that will be eligible for the iOS 7 update:

    iPhone

    • iPhone 5
    • iPhone 4S
    • iPhone 4

    iPad

    • Fourth Generation iPad
    • Third Generation iPad
    • iPad 2
    • iPad mini

    iPod touch

    • 5th generation iPod touch

    This disclaimer comes from Apple, as not all of the features will be available on some older devices:

    Panorama format is available on iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPod touch (5th generation). Square and video formats and swipe to capture are available on iPhone 4 or later, iPad (3rd generation or later), iPad mini, and iPod touch (5th generation).

    Filters in Camera are available on iPhone 5 and iPod touch (5th generation). Filters in Photos are available on iPhone 4 or later, iPad (3rd generation or later), iPad mini, and iPod touch (5th generation).

    AirDrop is available on iPhone 5, iPad (4th generation), iPad mini, and iPod touch (5th generation) and requires an iCloud account.

    Siri is available on iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPad with Retina display, iPad mini, and iPod touch (5th generation) and requires Internet access. Siri may not be available in all languages or in all areas, and features may vary by area. Cellular data charges may apply. New female and male voices will be available initially in U.S. English, French, and German.

    Find My iPhone enables you to locate iOS devices only when they are on and connected to a registered Wi-Fi network or have an active data plan. Some features may not be available for all countries or all areas.

    Cloud requires iOS 5 or later on iPhone 3GS or later, iPod touch (3rd generation or later), iPad, or iPad mini; a Mac computer with OS X Lion or later; or a PC with Windows 7 or Windows 8 (Outlook 2007 or later or an up-to-date browser is required for accessing email, contacts, and calendars). Some features require iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks. Some features require a Wi-Fi connection. Some features are not available in all countries. Access to some services is limited to 10 devices.

images: apple.com

Check out the Apple iOS 7 design updates.

When Will You Upgrade Your Apple Device?

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Molly blogs technologyparenting and geekery at Digital Mom Blog. Follow her on FacebookPinterest or Twitter.

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