Apple WWDC 2017 keynote in San Jose just got over, and the company has showcased its new iOS 11. The latest software update brings with a host of new features such as a redesigned App store, Apple Pay integration in iMessage, smarter Siri and more. Most importantly, Siri is now deeply integrated into iMessage. The voice-assistant now understands context and interest of users, and what a user wants to read or access next. Additionally Apple is also supporting machine learning and augmented reality with iOS 11.
For Apple, machine learning is going to be bigger on iOS 11, especially on device machine learning. Apple has opened APIs for machine learning for developers. Apple’s ARKit can be used by developers to create apps around augmented reality. Here’s a quick look at Apple’s iOS 11’s top features.
Apple iMessage redesigned
With Apple iOS 11, the iMessage now has a redesigned app drawer, and apps can be found right at the bottom. Users can simple scroll through them and use directly. All messages on iMessage will get automatically synced with iCloud and remain synced. This means any changes users make to messages will be reflected across all their Apple devices.
Up next, Apple Pay has been integrated right into iMessage, which supports person to person payments as well. Users can authenticate transactions on Apple Pay securely with Touch ID. Money received goes into Apple Pay cash card.
Siri is smarter, can translate as well
Coming to Siri, the voice-assistant now has more than 375 million active users globally, according to Apple. It is used in 21 languages in 36 countries. Apple has used deep learning to create a more natural and expressive voice for Siri. The assistant will now spot interests and automatically surface recommendations that a user might be interested in (based on their browsing history).
Siri will now show up multiple results when users make a query. Translation feature which is still in beta, has been announced as well. Users will be able to search for queries in multiple languages. Siri will be able to translate English words and phrases into Chinese, French, German, Italian or Spanish.
iOS 11 will bring some new features to the iPad Pro. For starters, there is a new customizable Dock, redesigned app switcher. Files app is also coming to iOS 11 for iPad Pro, and it can be synced with other providers like Box, Dropbox and more. Apple has added a Drag and Drop feature across iOS 11 on iPad to move text, images.
Augmented Reality on iOS 11
Apple announced a new ARKit for developers to create new experiences for iPhone and iPad. This kit will let developers use the built-in camera, processors and motion sensors in iOS devices to create AR experiences. Developers can also use Apple’s computer vision technologies to create VR content for iOS devices as well.
Photos in iOS 11
With iOS 11, Apple has introduced HEVC (high efficiency image format) for up to 2x better compression of photos. This means less storage space used in cloud as well as device. Apple iPhone 7 Plus’ portrait mode has also been improved and will now have improved low light performance, optical image stabilization, True tone flash, and HDR. In Live Photos, users can go in to edit mode and capture specific frame they want as their key photo.
Additionally, memories will now rely on machine learning to accurately identify objects in photos. It can even identify pets, sporting event photos, wedding, anniversary pictures, and yes baby photos.
Control center in iOS 11 is redesigned, and all of the information will now show in a single page. It has been completely redesigned to include more features. For example, there are different sliders for volume up and down, and more. The lock screen has been redesigned as well. Notification center and lock screen has been integrated to make them one. Swiping down lock screen will show notification screen. Widgets and camera app can be opened by swiping left and right respectively.
Maps in iOS 11 will show detailed floor plans of malls and place cards directory. Users will be able to browse through specific places on a floor. The feature will also be out for major airports as well. Navigation will show speed limit on the upper left. It has been updated to feature lane guidance as well.
Apple has introduced a ‘Do Not Disturb While Driving’ in CarPlay. The mode can be activated via Bluetooth or WiFi. It uses Doppler effect to determine when a car is moving and suggests users to switch on the mode. While ‘Do Not Disturb While Driving Mode’ is switched on, contacts will get a message informing that user is driving. CarPlay also has a new UI.
App Store has been redesigned and looks a lot like Apple Music now. App Store editors will uncover the stories behind iOS developers as well, and there will be more focus on reviews, etc. The idea is to increase to discovery around new apps. Games will have its own dedicated tabs on the app store, and App Store will show in-app purchases as well.
CoreML or Machine Learning
This part is for developers, which will let them make smarter apps with the new machine learning framework. Apple says this machine learning will take place locally on the device and uses their “custom silicon and tight integration of hardware and software” to ensure a powerful performance, while protecting user privacy.
HomeKit is now more accessible to create new ways to authenticate devices using software.
This will let developers add the voice-assistant to their apps and now categories supported for Siri include to-do lists, notes and reminders; banking for account transfers and balances; and apps that display QR codes.