With an expected release date in September, news is buzzing with features and rumors about the Apple iOS 8 update. Praised by Apple as “the biggest release for developers since the introduction of the App Store” [source], Apple is promising that developers now have access to new areas of iOS, and, in effect, will allow iOS users to do things they’ve never done before through the update.
Speculation also has tech-lovers wondering if iOS 8 will coincide with the release of a new iPhone or wearable Apple technology, like the iWatch; for now, however, Apple watchers will have to settle for the latest buzz and the most-talked-about features while they wait for the iOS 8 release.
- According to app developer Steve Troughton-Smith, iOS 8 has code to run multiple apps at once on the display in “1/4 size, 1/2 size, or 3/4 size” [source]. If the side-by-side app feature does make it to the final version of iOS 8 for the public release, Apple will gain a feature that is already supported on Google’s operating system with Android. Hailed by many as the ticket to increased productivity on the iPad, this feature will be able to run one app on the left side of the iPad and another on the right, making it possible, for example, to tackle emails while on a video conference.
- iOS 8 will allow the iPhone camera to take pictures of credit cards to automatically fill credit card information forms in Safari. Now, when iOS users want to pay online, they can skip the credit card fields simply by taking a quick pic.
- Touch ID fingerprint scanning is expected to expand beyond the lock screen and buying from the iTunes Store. For the first time, Touch ID will be available to sign into third party apps; also in talks with PayPal developers, Apple is likely to bring eBay and other online transactions to the world of Touch ID.
- The Handoff feature will allow Mac users to switch back and forth between the iPhone and the desktop. Users will be able to start a project on the iPhone or iPad and finish it on the Mac and vice versa.
More Features and Information
- In the iMessages app, temporary voice and video messages similar to those of Snapchat are also expected through the iOS 8 update, as well as instant ways to share a map of where you are with friends; plus, choose whether you want to share your location for an hour, until the end of the day, or indefinitely.
- iOS 8 will introduce predictive text that will suggest words and phrases likely to come next. Predictive text will analyze past language styles in Messages and Mail to adjust the language and tone to fit the conversation. For example, it may suggest more casual language if you’re messaging your best friend than if you are emailing your boss.
- Third-party keyboards will also be available. This feature will allow users to choose their favorite keyboard and input method for quick and easy typing. Want to swipe rather than type? New keyboard experiences will make it possible.
- Compatibility with iOS 8 will require an iPhone 4S or newer and an iPad 2 or newer to update, which means that you’re out of luck if you have an iPhone 4.
Keep in mind, that Apple makes changes and cancellations while in development; therefore, some features may not be ready for or included in the public release of iOS 8. Despite the uncertainty of the details, Apple is set on making this iOS update a bold move that will change the way the iPhone operates.
To stay up to date on all of the expected iOS features, check out the Apple iOS 8 preview.