Known for innovation and fun tech gadgetry, Apple excited brand enthusiasts yesterday when they announced a bunch of iOS 10 updates at their Worldwide Developers Conference. While some suggest that this is Apple's way of avoiding a larger vision for the future, these new updates, like bubble animation and more apps which modify iMessages, are definitely fun and will redefine the company's product experience.
In a statement on their website, Apple called the iOS 10 updates their "biggest release ever," and Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, was unequivocal in his praise of the tech giant's latest offerings:
iOS 10 adds Siri intelligence into QuickType and Photos, automates your home with the new Home app and opens up Siri, Maps, Phone and Messages to developers — while increasing security and privacy with powerful technologies like Differential Privacy.
The list of iOS 10 updates is exhaustive, and spans everything from Siri now being able to communicate with apps (due to the popular decision to open up Siri to third-party developers) to users being able to delete unwanted apps like "Stocks" and "Tips," as well as an entire category of updates to Messages. Users will also be able to use Siri on other Mac products.
While tons of digital ink can and will be spilled on the exciting iOS 10 updates, which will become available for beta users in July and all Apple product users in the fall, below is a list of some of the smaller updates which will make your Apple experience that much more fun.
Completely Redefined Messaging
This is probably the most exciting iOS 10 update — for me, at least. In an attempt to compete with Facebook Messenger, Apple introduced super cool updates like a "handwriting" effect which can be used to send "writing" (or, let's be real, crude drawings) via iMessages, bubble animations for message threads, "rich text" links that allow you to play videos and music from links without leaving the message screen, and the "App Drawer," which will allow users to access messaging-specific apps directly from iMessages, so they can do everything from send stickers to each other (a la Facebook's Messenger app) to pay each other using Square Cash.
This group of updates is due largely in part to Apple opening up iMessage integration to app developers, allowing them to create apps to be used specifically within the iMessages app.
You Can Delete All Those Irritating Apple Apps You Never Use
I changed my mind. THIS is the most exciting iOS 10 update. If you're anything like me, having to hide those oh-so-annoying Apple-provided apps like "Stocks," "Compass," "Tips," and "Find Friends" (seriously, does anyone even use that?) when organizing your iPhone home screen is like pulling teeth. Now, you can finally get rid of them, clearing up room for much more important things, like Neko Atsume and the Lisa Frank app.
There is a caveat to this update: You can't delete apps like iMessages and Safari. But why would you do that in the first place?
Siri Learns New Skills
As a latecomer to Apple products, I never really got the hype about Siri. Sure, it's cool that my phone can talk to me, but what good is she, other than for getting directions (sometimes) and setting up appointments?
With this new update, Siri will be good for way more. Apple opened up Siri to third-party developers to improve the app amid criticisms of its futility, and the results are amazing. The new and improved Siri will not only be able to access the apps you actually use, but will also be available on Macs and will use the "Finder" app. It remains to be seen how much more intuitive Siri will be when iOS 10 becomes publicly available in the fall, but the fact that I will be able to order food without even opening my phone is a good sign.
While it's easy to fall prey to the trap of Apple hype, these updates seem like exactly what it'll take to make me fall in love with my iPhone again. At the very least, iOS 10 may help me and countless other users hold off on switching to Android for the foreseeable future.