Monday, July 22, 2024

iOS 17 could be a huge update — here’s what might change


Earlier this year, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that iOS 17 might not be a huge update, and would instead focus on fixing bugs and improving overall performance, with the company shifting most gears toward launching its own augmented reality headset instead. However, Gurman now appears to have backed away from that, saying in a The latest “Power On” newsletter iOS 17 may indeed bring many of the “most requested features” to iOS.

This is a very vague and general statement. But what could be these much needed features? Here’s what we think could be added, based on feature requests over the years from the community.

multiple timers

Joe Maring/Digital Trends

Have you ever used the timer function in the clock app on your device? iPhone? Chances are, you may also have noticed that you can literally only run one timer on the iPhone at once.

In watchOS 8, one of the biggest and most surprising features was multi-timer support. With this, you can have one timer for five minutes and another for 30 minutes, or whatever you want. However, even with iOS 16, you can only have one timer on the iPhone.

This limitation on iOS is meaningless, especially since the Apple Watch has multiple timer support. Users have been asking for many timers for years, so if Apple is really going to add some “most requested features,” this better be one of them.

Individual volume control settings

Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Since I’ve been trying Android phones Here at Digital Trends, you’ve learned that Android does many things better than iOS, including volume controls. For example, when you activate the volume button on a device like the Samsung Galaxy S23, you can tap the volume slider to expand it to individual sliders for System, Alerts, Bixby Voice, Ringtone, and Media.

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However, on iOS, when you press the volume buttons, it basically adjusts the overall volume. You can independently change the ringtone and alarm volume, but only by entering sound and touch in the Settings app. But the volume buttons will change overall volume levels if there’s no sound active — if there’s some sound playing, the volume buttons will change that particular sound, like Media or Siri. It’s confusing and, frankly, stupid.

At this point, Apple should just copy Android and show a button when adjusting the volume to expand to the individual volume controls. It will make every iOS user’s life much easier because the current method is cumbersome rubbish.

Better notification management

Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Another thing I’ve learned since I dipped my toes into Android is How much better are notifications handled compared to iOS.

With iOS, this is pretty much an all-or-nothing approach. Basically, if you allow notifications on iOS, you will receive notifications for everything in the app, unless the app has settings for the type of notifications you receive. But that depends on the developer. On Android, you can have more granular control over the type of notifications you receive from an app.

Apple’s way of notifications includes banners, banners, and more banners. Sure, you can group all your notification banners together on the lock screen and Notification Center, and it’s a “stack,” but when you expand it, all those banners take up space. If you have a ton of notifications, this is an annoyingly long list of banners to go through.

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Again, Android does this better by presenting each app’s notifications in an agenda-like list view, which saves a lot of space. It is also easier to clear notifications on Android, while iOS needs multiple taps. And if you dismiss a notification, you won’t be able to view it again, while Android has a notification history feature.

While notifications have improved a bit on iOS, they’re still a bit of a mess compared to Android. Hopefully, Apple will provide a major overhaul to make notifications more efficient and streamlined in iOS 17.

Sideload apps outside of the App Store

I’m not sure this is something I personally care about, but it’s been a common request from a lot of people. And with Apple in some hot water with European antitrust laws, iOS 17 may be when Apple allows apps to be downloaded from other digital storefronts besides its own App Store.

with The European Digital Markets Act (DMA) comes into effect soon, and companies have until 2024 to comply with the new rules. Essentially, companies in the big tech space will need to allow alternative app stores on their platforms, giving users more choice.

There have been rumors that the iPhone 15 will finally move to USB-C based on EU regulations, which require a common charger for all electronic devices. DMA is another law that Apple must abide by, and it could mean that for the first time we’ll be able to get apps on the iPhone through alternative app stores, not just Apple Stores.

If developers choose to go this route, they don’t need to pay Apple a 15% to 30% fee for in-app purchases, and users can also get an alternative way to pay without going through Apple. For many, it will be a win-win.

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Allow application icons to be placed anywhere

Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Apple made some progress in iOS 14 by letting users do this Customize their home screens without the need for a jailbreak. However, we still can’t put app icons anywhere we want on the home screen. Sure, you could use a widget app that provides a transparent area, but that’s a workaround that shouldn’t be there.

On Android, you can place your apps anywhere you want on the grid, like at the bottom, where they’re easy to reach with one hand. However, if you are creating a home screen on iOS, the first app you place on a new page He should Go to the top left corner, which is one of the most inaccessible places for me.

It’s time for Apple to allow us to place our apps wherever we please on the home screen, without forcing us to go from left to right and up to down. Give us home screen freedom!

We’re excited to see what iOS 17 has in store for you

This is all speculation, but I think these have all been some of the most popular user requests for iOS features over the past few years. Again, Gorman made it very vague, and even walked back what he said just a few months ago. However, we are excited to see what iOS 17 will bring to us iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro this year (not to mention older devices that should receive it, like the iPhone 11).

With WWDC just around the corner, hopefully we won’t have to wait much longer to find out.

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