Like every year, Apple Inc has just celebrated its inaugural WWDC keynote, with the exception that this year the event is held only via streaming due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.
And with the keynote also comes the news of all the company’s operating systems, including iOS, its operating system for iPhone phones and iPod Touch players (remember that the company’s tablets use iPad OS).
It is striking that, after 13 versions, now iOS users can make use of the desktop widgets, in a very similar way to how Android device users are used to.
In this sense, users can set the widgets on the different desktop pages, having access to the widgets available through a gallery, being able to drag those they want to use on the screens where they want to be located.
iOS14 also releases the PIP (picture in picture) function, which allows the reproduction of a video in a separate window and in a non-annoying way while one or more other applications are being used, improving multitasking capabilities.
Also comes App Library, which offers a section with all installed applications organized by different categories. App Clips is a functionality similar to Google’s Instant Applications, which allows users to use the applications without having to previously install them on their devices.
To end this section, iOS 14 offers an improved way to control application permissions, and enter the function CarKey, which allows the unlocking of cars with the telephone by using NFC technology. For now this function will be released with the new BMW 5 Series. In addition, this function will also reach iOS 13.
Siri is now more functional
In addition to the new features at the system level, some of the integrated applications have also seen their share of new features, especially Siri, its virtual assistant, which in iOS 14 will release an improved user interface along with a batch of new functions, in addition to better interaction with other applications, especially Apple’s own. A remarkable aspect is that, when invoked, it now appears on the screen through a colored bubble moving around waiting for voice instructions.
Messages now focuses more on group conversations
This app also gets its share of new features in iOS14. Among them is the possibility of anchoring the most important conversations, to keep them fixed at the top, for which you simply have to slide them to the right and press on the pin icon. In addition, it also comes online replies, to reply to specific messages and see the replies in the whole conversation or in a specific thread.
In group conversations, the most active users will stand out at the top. You can also write the name of a person to be able to send them a direct message, and even notifications arrive that will reach users when they have been mentioned in a conversation. There are also emoji reactions for messages, and even Memojis include new customization options.
New translation app
iOS 14 launches Translate, its new translation application. It is basically the Apple equivalent of Google Translate, allowing translations of text and voice phrases to be carried out, although with the exception that the processing will be done locally thanks to Neural Engine, so it works even without the need for connection, and the data will not be sent to Apple’s servers.
Initially support 11 different languages, although support to new languages will be expanded over time.
Apple Maps is increasingly complete
Apple Maps becomes a serious rival to Google Maps within the Apple ecosystem by introducing new features, including bike routes, charging points for electric cars, and improved maps for the UK, Ireland and Canada.
You can get more information at apple.com.