Wednesday, September 18, 2013

First comments after upgrading to ios7

There are numerous detailed reviews of new features in iOS 7 going over all features - Ars Techinca has a good one.  I'll go over my personal reactions.

The look and feel is very different.  I have an elderly relative that has trouble using technology, but is very successful using iOS 6.  She will not be moving to iOS 7.  The iOS6 skeuomorphism is too helpful and this change would be too abrupt.

Some notes:

  • My notification center view did not include weather data.  I never enabled the weather app to know my location data.  Enabling that enabled weather data in notification center.
  • Albums with no photo now have text words diagonally written as the album cover - name and artist.  I really like that.
  • Videos app:
    • I can now stream movies purchased from iTunes in the Videos app!
    • Still no genres from shared iTunes in my house.  AppleTV gets a genre view (See only Dramas, for example), iPhone does not - just one big scrollable list of images, and no portrait mode for choosing a movie.
  • Radio - my experiences so far have been positive.  I am an iTunes Match user, and have not heard an ad yet, as expected.  It has not yet enticed me to buy music, but I always thought this kind of functionality would be natural for iTunes and Apple.
  • Camera
    • I hated the tiny control used to switch from video camera to camera mode in all older iOS versions.  The "swipe the whole screen" method to switch in iOS 7 is superior!
  • Messages
    • You can see a timestamp for each message if you want to in iOS 7 - drag your messages to the left for a quick look.  The timestamps self-hide when you let go.
  • Auto-app updates:
    • Under Settings, iTunes & App Store, Updates - turn this on and applications automatically update!  Those updates might get a bit delayed for a few days...
  • Compass
    • I found that the compass capabilities of my iPhone were simply not good enough to use reliably under iOS 6.  With iOS 7, the first time I ran the new compass app, the  instructions to calibrate were easy to follow and now the compass seems useful!
More will come as I use iOS 7 further...

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