Apple unveiled iOS 8 on Monday at the company’s annual worldwide developer conference in San Francisco. If you have a developer account, you can download iOS 8 by signing into your developer account, and selecting the Apple device you would be updating from a list. The upgrade will be available in Fall this year for the general public.
Here’s what you want to know about the latest mobile operating system:
Photos app and iCloud Photo Library
In iOS 8, the Photos app and iCloud Photo Library lets users access their photos on the cloud. The photos can be organized in folders, consistently across all enabled devices, and the Photos app comes with image-editing tools.
Conversations in Messages become more immersive with the iOS 8. Users have the ability to communicate with a swipe, and a Tap to Talk feature allows users to share their voice. An updated group messaging gives users the ability to add and remove contacts, leave a conversation, and enable a ‘Do not Disturb’ functionality. Multiple photos and videos can be shared at once, and users can browse through all photos and videos within a conversation. Users can also choose to share their current location from within Messages.
The new Health app
IOS 8 comes with a new Health app, that can aggregate information from various health apps and fitness devices. The new mobile operating system offers developers the ability to talk to other health and fitness apps. With user permission, each app can use specific information from other apps to provide a more comprehensive offering. For example, the Nike+ apps using NikeFuel will be able to pull in other key HealthKit metrics such as sleep and nutrition to build a custom user profile.
iOS 8 introduces Family Sharing, a feature that lets family members browse and download each other’s iTunes, iBooks, or App Store purchases. Up to six members can participate, each with their own Apple ID.
Apple launched a iCloud Drive folder with iOS 8 and Mac OS X Yosemite. This folder will work like any other folder, letting users drag and drop files or folders, and organize them. The organization gets reflected across all devices.
New predictive typing for Apple’s QuickType keyboard is smarter and more personalized, says Apple. QuickType understands the way users communicate, suggesting favorite phrases with time. What the keyboard learns is encrypted at the device level, and not sent to the cloud.
iOS 8 for the enterprise
For enterprise users, iOS 8 improves the way users are informed of how their devices are configured, managed or restricted. IOS 8 offers expanded security and management improvements as well as new productivity features, says Apple. These include an expanded level of data protection for built-in apps, and support for configurable thread notifications in Mail, among other things.
Additional iOS 8 features include:
• Design enhancements, bringing interactive notifications, quicker access to key contacts, the ability to quickly switch back and forth between the inbox and drafts in Mail, as well as intelligent suggestions;
• extended Spotlight capabilities that includes results from Wikipedia, findings from the news and results from places nearby; and
• easier continuity between multiple Apple devices, including Handoff to start an activity on one device and finish on another, along with Instant Hotspot and the ability to make and receive calls and send SMS and MMS messages from the Mac or iPad.
[Image courtesy: Apple]