The Worldwide Developers Conference gave the world a sneak peak at the new software the iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches would soon be running. Rather than a simple tweak, Apple have given their new iOS 7 operating system a vast overhaul and we have seen the improvements for those of us blessed with developer accounts.
Never a company to be accused of resting on its laurels, Apple’s major change relates to the design of the app buttons, shifting from its previous complicated and textured icons to ones that are fresher, simpler and more colorful. While this means the buttons themselves appear flat, iOS 7 also introduces a 3D effect that adds depth to the screen. A few of Apple’s major apps have also been changed. Talking companion Siri has had his/her voice improved to be less “shrill.” Two new languages, French and German, have also been added to the service, with more promised in the future. The voice prompts have also been expanded to include commands such as “turn on Bluetooth” and “play my last voice-mail,” and Siri will now be able to search through external sources such as Twitter or Wikipedia.
Another major announcement was the upcoming launch of Apple’s streaming music service, iTunes Radio, due to launch in autumn. In a move designed to put it in direct competition with the likes of Spotify and Pandora, iTunes Radio will work in tandem with Apple’s iTunes software, feeding listeners a personal soundtrack based on previous music purchases. Available on all Apple mobile devices, as well as Mac and PC, the service will be free with advertisements. However, the service does come ad-free if you subscribe to Apple’s iTunes Match service. While the only new hardware announced was the new Mac Pro, Apple will no doubt show new versions of their mobile devices in the latter half of the year. If you cannot wait for Apple to announce these new models, you can now pick up an iPad Interest Free from Littlewoods, and upgrade to iOS 7 when it is released at some point this autumn.