ioS 11 is finally here! The general public rollout of Apple’s latest version of its mobile operating system started on Tuesday morning and as with every major iOS update, new features and tricks await iPhone and iPad owners.
Based on what we’ve seen so far, here are the new iOS 11 features you’ll be using time and time again.
1. Redesigned Control Center, Unified Lockscreen, and Notifications
iOS 11 will bring big design changes to the Control Center with a taller interface with more functions crammed into a single page. With the use of 3D Touch, users can access more options on each button.
The lock screen and the Notification Center will be merged into one screen, just scroll up on the lock screen to access your latest notifications.
2. New iMessages features
The Messages app drawer will be easier to access and navigate in iOS 11 requiring just a single tap. Messages will be synced across all Apple devices as well with “Messages in iCloud.”
3. Person-to-person payments
Another feature that made its debut in iOS 11 is person-to-person payment support via the Messages Apple Pay app.
This is similar to other secure payment services like Venmo or Square, Square Cash. With this, you will be able to send, receive and request money using your linked credit or debit card all within iMessage.
The funds will be transferred to your very own “Apple Pay Cash Card” and it will be instantly available for you to spend or transfer to your bank account.
4. Smarter Siri
Siri now has more nuanced speaking voices and will be smarter too with “on-device learning.” This means the voice assistant will try and predict what you’re going to do next based on your past activity.
Additionally, Siri can now do English voice translations for a number of languages including Chinese, Spanish, German, French and Italian. More languages are expected to be added at a later time.
5. New Camera and Photos features
iOS 11’s Camera and Photos apps also get tons of new features.
A new video and photo compression format (HEVC and HEIF, respectively) will be introduced in iOS 11 that will cut the file sizes to half with the same quality.
New filters and effects will be introduced including long-exposure mode, loops and bounces in Live Videos. A new Depth Kit for the iPhone 7 Plus also makes its debut for more depth-sensing effects.
6. CarPlay’s Do Not Disturb Mode
Apple CarPlay in iOS 11 has a much-needed “Do Not Disturb While Driving” mode, which locks down your iPhone when you take the wheel.
By using a combination of Bluetooth and Wi-Fi sensing, this mode can automatically detect if you’re in a moving car, locking your iPhone with a blank screen.
The mode will also postpone notifications with an option to inform other people who are trying to contact you that you are driving.
7. Automatic app offloading
iOS 11 also has a feature that can free up storage space automatically. It’s called Offload App and it will delete unused apps from your device but retain their settings and data.
This will ensure that your iOS gadget will be running smoothly as much as possible all the time. All offloaded apps can be downloaded again at any time without document, settings and data loss.
8. Redesigned App Store
Apple’s App Store gets a big makeover for iOS 11. Three new tabs will be added to the store – Today, Games and Apps.
The Today tab will highlight what’s new or trending on a particular day, great for showcasing apps and discovery. This tab will also feature how-to guides, tips, tricks and daily articles from Apple’s own editorial teams.
App types will be separated into two tabs – Games and Apps. These tabs will have top charts, lists of in-app purchases and videos.
Individual app pages will have more available videos, more visible ratings and reviews and prominent badges.
9. Screen Recording
iOS 11’s new built-in “Screen Recording” feature lets users capture a video of anything on an iPhone’s screen and automatically save it to its Camera Roll.
Screen Recording on iOS 11 can be accessed via a Control Center shortcut and users can quickly record a video of an iPhone’s screen instantly.
10. One-handed keyboard
This is a welcome function for iPhone Plus owners – a one-handed QuickType keyboard. This shifts all the keys to one side of the screen so you can type more effectively with just one hand. This mode can be activated by holding down your iOS 11 keyboard’s emoji key.
11. SOS feature
iOS 11 also comes with something called “Emergency SOS.” When the feature is enabled, it automatically dials the number for emergency services, depending on location. Obviously, in the U.S. it’s 911.
The new feature is designed to help someone in trouble contact emergency services more quickly. To activate the feature, simply tap the sleep/wake button rapidly five times. That action bypasses TouchID and your gadget calls 911.