In our article on iOS 9 we already talked about the main news announced by Apple for the new version of the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch operating system, but now that we have been using it for a few days we bring you a thorough compilation of all the things that have changed .
Shall we begin?
The new interface of Siri will be very familiar to Apple Watch users. Apple’s voice assistant has learned some new tricks as well and to emphasize the emphasis the company is placing on privacy, the device uses short vibrations to indicate that Siri is listening. The dictation mode has also been redesigned.
Spotlight, simply renamed to Search as part of its integration within Siri is accessible in two different ways: by sliding down any Home screen as in iOS 7 and 8, or to the left of the first Home page as in iOS 6. The latter also offers all sorts of suggestions based on our usage habits, where we are and what time and day it is. For example, in the morning we will find suggestions of places to have breakfast while at noon the restaurants and bars will take their place.
Mention also for the back button in the status bar that appears when the app we’re using sends us to another one, for example, to Maps when we click on an address of a contact.
We found small design changes here and there throughout the system, from the more rounded modal windows to the icons on the two-step verification screen and the new San Francisco font. Most notable is the new multi-tasking screen with the application selector, which again removes favorite contacts from the top and offers a more attractive view with depth and blur effects.
The new iCloud Drive app is hidden by default but we can activate it from the Settings. And it’s not the only new addition to the pre-installed apps: Find My Friends and Find My iPhone also become part of the standard package along with the operating system. In addition, Find My Friends now also has a Notification Center widget.
The controversial and, above all, confusing behaviour of the shift key has been corrected once and for all in iOS 9. It is now simply impossible not to know whether you are typing in upper or lower case since the entire keyboard changes for that purpose. I think most people will agree that seeing the keyboard in lower case is as useful as it is unsightly, but at least the Preview Character setting will leave the decision up to us.
The editing shortcuts on the iPad keyboard are a great addition, as is trackpad mode by sliding two fingers over the keyboard to move the cursor. The best thing? Which is not exclusive to the iPad as the Apple presentation seemed to imply, but also works on the iPhone.
Photos has a carousel at the bottom of the screen with which we can move very quickly from one image to another in front of the classic gesture of sliding them one by one.
As we have already seen, Notes has received a major overhaul with features that will be very well received by users such as formatting text, drawing, making lists, and inserting images and maps.
The photos next to the contacts on Messages are no longer exclusive to the iPhone 6 Plus as in iOS 8 and now also extended to the 4.7-inch model, the iPhone 6.
The Podcasts app has been updated to go more in line with its iTunes section, with a separate list of unplayed episodes in chronological order.
The context menu of Mail has an option to insert attachments stored in iCloud Drive.
Maps finally has public transportation routes, although until further notice only in a handful of Western cities (Baltimore, Berlin, Chicago, London, Mexico, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Toronto and Washington DC) and 300 (yes, three hundred) in China. The search for points of interest on the other hand is a pleasant surprise.
Apple Watch users can activate a new Batteries widget in the Notification Center with watch and phone battery information.
In the Settings we find a considerable number of changes and new options, including:
- A handy search bar at the top to quickly find the setting you need. And if you frequently use the iCloud Keychain to store your passwords and have found yourself consulting a particular password list in Safari settings more than once, yes, it now has its own search engine, too.
- Group by application. Now the notifications are grouped by date and time but if we prefer the previous behaviour we can activate it here.
- Among the Accessibility settings we have a new section called Touch Facilities with adjustments to set how the screen will respond to touch.
- In the same section, Vibration allows us to turn off all iPhone vibrations with a single switch, including earthquake, tsunami, and other emergency warnings; while Shake to undo allows us to turn off this option in case we accidentally shake the iPhone.
- Until now, iPad users were the only ones who could choose whether to use the side switch to block rotation or mute the device. Now we have that freedom on the iPhone and iPod touch as well. Interestingly, if we choose the option to lock rotation, the Control Center button for this feature disappears, leaving room for future betas to be exchanged for a mute button or perhaps greater organization within these shortcuts.
- Battery details have been moved to a new separate section with more details on app consumption and the option to manually activate the new Low Power Mode.
- Among the Mail settings we have the option to disable the new feature to search for contacts in our mail that allows the iPhone to try to identify calls from numbers that may not be in our address book but in the signature of some email we have received.
- A new Notes setting allows us to choose the default format with which we will start writing a note.
- The Continuity settings for receiving calls on other devices has been moved from FaceTime to Phone. It makes sense.
- Safari has something called Content Blockers but it seems to be a “work in progress” and still doesn’t show anything inside.
- Now we can choose the resolution with which our iPhone will record the videos by default differentiating between normal and slow motion recording: 720p at 30 fps, 1080p at 30 fps or 1080p at 60 fas for the first one, and 720p or 1080p at 240 fps for the second one.
- We can make Siri remain silent when we have the device in silence through the Audio Response option.
- By default Touch ID users must now use a 6 digit code instead of the usual 4, although there is an option to continue as usual. There is also a security option to allow a wallet to appear on the lock screen by double-clicking on the start button.
- CarPlay wireless mode isn’t ready yet, but we can pair our car with iPhone wirelessly.
We won’t talk about the music app this time since it’s really not so much a new feature of iOS 9 as the next update to iOS 8.4, and we can’t show you anything about the iPad’s multi-window modes or the new News app, not included in this first developer beta.
In any case, and even if we don’t see how the betas evolve until their final launch in autumn and the more than probable hidden novelties linked to hardware (Force Touch with the next iPhone), my note is of notable , although scraped because of the insufficient coverage of the public transport maps.