Apple WWDC – iOS 8

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Apple’s WWDC 2014 is currently taking place and there’s some changes to iOS 8 that seem really familiar.  I feel like Android was almost ahead of its time, here’s some new features/changes to iOS with version 8 that have been around within Android for quite some time now:

  •  “Extensibility”- this is simply the concept of 3rd party apps having the ability to talk to each other and share data within the OS.  I never understood why Apple had this limitation in the first place, but hey welcome to 2010 Apple!
  • 3rd party keyboards – Users of iPhones had the flexibility of using all but one keyboard!!  Another thing that just never made sense!  From what I’ve heard, Swift and Swype are already getting keyboards ready for iOS.  Apple will always be releasing another keyboard version called “QuickType”, which to me sounds exactly like Swift.  It pretty much learns for you as you type and becomes more intelligent at predicting what word you’re going to type next.
  • Widgets!! – This was in my opinion one of the greatest advantages for Android over iPhone.  Widget possibilities are absolutely limitless with Android.  I actually just started using Zooper which always you to even create your own widgets; it’ll be interesting to see if applications like this will be available for iOS.  Welcome to 2008 iOS!  iOS will also support widgets within the notification center (which itself ‘notification center’ is another thing iOS is relatively new to that Android has had since day 1), so I guess you’ll start to see widget support for things like Spotify or Google Maps within your notification center.
  • TMO WiFi – I’ve been a supporter of T-Mobile for some time now and this new feature is only geared towards TMO, but to me a big deal.  WiFi calling on TMO is much more than what it sounds like- it’s not only voice calls, but SMS/MMS as well.  So, if you’re a Sprint customer and you have crappy service where you work/live or just in general in a particular location you’re pretty much out of luck on making/receiving voice calls and possibly not getting MMS.  And if this is at your home then you might have to get a device from Sprint that pretty much creates a private network via internet that would allow you to make calls.  With TMO WiFi calling this is a standard feature that’s included- essentially turns your phone into a VOIP device.
  • Battery usage per app – I believe this was first released on Android Ice Cream Sandwich (v 4.0; 2011), but iOS 8 will now allow the user visibility into battery consumption per application.  I didn’t see too many details on this new feature, but hopefully this will not only look at applications but also services themselves (something that Android does do).

There’s obviously tons of other new features along with iOS 8, especially since there’s iPhone and/or iPad specific enhancements pretty much bundled into iOS 8.  What I mention above are definitely not the biggest new features out of iOS 8, but rather only things that Android has had in place for a while.  WWDC also announced the release of OS X Yosemite, which will be another free upgrade for the Mac.

There was so much content out of WWDC (and it goes on for another 3 days) so it would be best to head over to Engadget and check it out.   They did a nice job of organizing and bundled all information in one place (as they always do): http://www.engadget.com/event/wwdc2014/articles

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