Apple WWDC 2017: iOS 11 announced with new features, improvements to Siri and more

Siri with the use of latest advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence, will now sound more natural while responding to user and become more contextually aware

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Highlights

    • iOS 11 will be available this fall
    • Siri will now become more contextually aware
    • iOS 11 brings easier multitasking on iPad with a new customisable Dock

Apple at its Worldwide Developers Conference 2017 announced the latest mobile operating system- iOS 11. The new update which is made available to developers through Apple Developer Center will be rolling out as a public beta later this month. The newest software update includes a suite of features for iPhone and iPad.

Here’s a look at what the latest update brings for a whole new user experience-

Redesigned iMessage

With iOS 11, users will now get a redesigned app drawer, and apps, even stickers can be quickly accessed in the iMessage app. Apps are now place right at the bottom and users can simply scroll and use it directly. ‘Synchronised conversation’ across iCloud, iOS and macOS as demonstrated by Craig Federighi, will now sync users’ messages across their Apple devices. The conversation will be stored on iCloud, and if user delete their message on iPhone or iPad, it will be erased from their Mac as well.

Apple Pay

Apple Pay which has been integrated into iMessage also gets person to person payments. iOS 11 will bring Apple Pay Cash Card, whereby users will be able to store their received funds from other users. This money can be transferred to user’s personal bank account.

iOS11_ApplePay

Siri

One of the most notable feature on the new iOS 11 is the improvements that it has brought on Apple’s voice-based assistant Siri. With the use of latest advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence, the assistant’s voice will sound more natural while responding to user and become more contextually aware. As Siri now gets smarter, the company says that is possible due “on-device learning”.

According to Apple, “Siri extends beyond voice, using on-device learning to deliver more personal experiences and offers suggestions based on personal usage of Safari, News, Mail, Messages and more.”

In addition, Siri will now be able to translate words and phrases from English to Chinese, French, German, Italian, or Spanish.

Control Center

Apple has introduced a completely redesigned Control Center in iOS 11.  All the information will now show in a single page and users can swipe up the panel to access important settings or even increase/decrease volume when listening to songs. The Lock Screen has also been redesigned to see Notifications all in one place.

Camera app

iOS 11 now enables users to capture Portrait Mode images with optical image stabilisation, true tone flash, or in HDR. Apple has introduced HEIF (high efficiency image file format) that reduces the amount of storage every photo take on iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. In Live Photos, new Loop and Bounce effects can now be applied.

In Photos, memories now use machine learning and automatically create photos of pets or birthdays. Memory movies are also optimised to ‘play in both’ portrait and landscape orientation.

iOS11_Photos

Augmented Reality-ARKit

Apple has announced a new platform for developers- ARKit to bring in new experiences for iPhone and iPad. The ARKit will let developers use built-in camera, powerful processors and motion sensors in iOS devices to build AR experience. This Kit will also allow developers to ‘tap into’ the latest computer vision technologies to create detailed and ‘compelling virtual content’.

iOS11_ARKit

iPad

Multitasking on iPad will now become more easier with a new customisable Dock available on the new iOS 11. The Dock provides quick access to those apps and documents that are frequently used from any screen. There’s a redesigned app switcher where users can move between pairs of active apps, used in Split View or Slide over. The new Files app can be synced with other providers like Box, Dropbox and more. A Drag and Drop feature added across iOS 11 on iPad will let users move text and images.

iOS11_iPad_splitview

Apple Maps

Apple Maps is bringing indoor maps for airports and shopping centres in select cities. Maps in iOS 11 will show ‘detailed floor plans’ of malls. Apple has indoor maps for over 20 major airports, as pointed out by The Verge. The new iOS 11 has added improvements to Maps whereby lane guidance and speed limits will help user navigate ‘unfamiliar highways’.

Apple has also introduced a new safety feature ‘Do Not Disturb’ in CarPlay. The mode which can be activated via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth will help users from getting distracted while driving. Text messages won’t be displayed by default; however, senders will have the option of replying with ‘urgent’.

Apple App Store

The App Store has been redesigned and there’s a new “Today” tab which is said to ‘surface’ notable releases. App Store editors will be able uncover the stories behind iOS developers through in-depth features and interviews.

SiriKit

SiriKit will give developers to integrate Siri into their apps and with iOS 11 categories supported for Siri will include to-do lists, notes and reminders; banking for account transfers and balances; and apps that display QR codes.

CoreML or Machine Learning

Primarily for developers, this will enable them to make smarter apps with the new machine learning ‘framework’.

According to Apple, the Core ML is “designed for iOS, this new framework for machine learning lets all processing happen locally on-device, using Apple’s custom silicon and tight integration of hardware and software to deliver powerful performance while maintaining user privacy.”

Other features that are coming to iOS 11 include- screen recording, FaceTime Live Photos, one-handed keyboard, AirPlay 2 and more.

Availability

The new iOS 11 will be available this fall as a free software update for the following Apple devices-

iPhone-  iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone SE, and iPhone 5s.

iPad- 2.9-inch iPad Pro 2nd generation, 12.9-inch iPad Pro 1st generation, 10.5-inch iPad Pro, 9.7-inch iPad Pro, iPad Air 2, iPad Air, iPad 5th generation, iPad mini 4, iPad mini 3, and iPad mini 2.

iPod- iPod touch 6th generation.