It has been almost a week since the release of iOS 8 for end users. Before its release, we’ve covered almost all rumors on it. After September 17’s release, we’ve discussed some of its notable specs, how to keep its torturesome features at bay and when exactly could users expect a jailbreak to land.
In this article, we’ll review iOS 8 for the first time. We’ll explore every discrete segment and have a holistic approach so audiences get a comprehensive review from us on the OS.
To start with, don’t expect cosmetic changes because there’s almost none. We congratulate Apple for this as for the first time the company has stepped out of its comfort zone – keeping itself from making some design changes and wrapping it up. When it comes to improvements, there are plenty of them.
Let’s start with custom keyboards. iOS offers users the chance to add keyboards with extra functions. Users can add such keyboards in two ways; within apps or via app store. Swype is a very popular Android keyboard. It lets users type fast and by swiping fingers over the keyboard. TextExpander is another fascinating keyboard. It allows users turon abbreviations into longer words, phrases, even paragraphs simply by tapping.
Standard iOS keyboard comes with a feature called predictive typing. When a user types, the keyboard picks up clues and predicts the next word. Third party keyboards like Popkey allow users to send GIFs instead of text messages.
Notification is a very crucial feature of any mobile OS. Apple has rightly pointed that out and allow third party apps to add widgets to iOS 8 notification center. The Today tab under the notification center shows users latest updates on sports, weather, politics and music in the form of snippets. Apple has made the notification center interactive; users can reply to incoming messages simply by pulling them down, and without having to leave the app they are in. Fascinating! Isn’t it?
iCloud, Message, Health, HomeKit and Camera and Photos all received improvements. However, the one that we’d like to mention first is Siri. The personal assistant has been made voice activated. If you are plugged into a power source, you just need to say “Hey Siri” and Siri will start interacting with you. Siri can now take dictation from you. You just need to talk to Siri and it will type everything down. A feature called Shazam got added to Siri which enables Siri to identify any music that is being played around it.
As for other features, iOS 8 introduced fast text, audio and video messaging. The OS also makes possible group conversation. The iCloud could be upgraded to iCloud Drive which offers better storage and direct access to iCloud files and folders.
Camera and Photo improvements are too many and we’ve discussed many of them in the past. Self timer and time-lapse camera functions could make iOS experience more enjoyable. The Panorama photos for iPad is no doubt a welcoming addition.
The HealthKit feature is being introduced for the first time and it’s pretty awesome. It collects data from third party health and fitness apps and synthesizes them so the synergy helps physicians to get a complete picture of the patient’s health.
The HomeKit feature works in the background. You can control home appliances through HomeKit. You can easily turn your light off by giving Siri a command. To smoothly manage your home appliances, there can’t be a better system than HomeKit, and we’d have to say Android is behind Apple in this area.
All in all, the roundup of various improvements of iOS 8 features leads to one simple verdict. Apple indeed thought of dishing out something new to the users. We won’t be surprised at all if iOS 8 combined with iPhone 6 helps Apple to beat Android in not-too-distant future.