In the first weekend after it was released, iOS 7 was downloaded and installed more than 200 million times. It was fastest adoption rate in iOS history. It isn’t all that surprising, since iOS 7 was a complete redesign and rethink of the popular mobile operating system. People were fascinated and wanted to try it out. Now that iOS 7 has been out for a couple months, it’s time to look forward to what’s next: iOS 8. What should you expect from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s next major OS update?
iOS 8 won't reinvent the wheel
For those of you who are expecting another major refresh, you’ll be disappointed. iOS 8 will look much the same. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) may do some refining of the interface, either to fix previously broken UI problems or to accommodate new features. But they will not be doing another complete overhaul for at least four or five iterations.
That may be sad for folks who like change, but it’s actually a good thing. The masses hate change, so the longer a UI stays the same the more comfortable with it they become.
One major new feature for Apple iOS 8
Almost every year, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) presents at least one major new feature for their iPhone OS. One year it was Siri. The next year it was Maps. The next was a complete redesign. What will it be for iOS 8?
There are several options here. There are rumors of everything from a 3D interface to app-to-app integration. Our bet? An overhauled notification system. People have been complaining about it forever, and even the last refresh was considered not good enough. We expect Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to try something new when it comes to iOS notifications.
There have also been rumors for years that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is planning on some sort of glance-able information system. Think widgets on Android, but different. Maybe some sort of live icon deal like the Windows Phone? Who knows? What we do know is that it is sorely needed.
Apple iOS 8 to include several smaller new features
In addition to the major tent-pole feature, there are usually several much more minor updates that go along with the new OS, and the same will be true for iOS 8. The question is, what will they be this time around?
There are several possibilities. Our favorites are an update to iCloud and an update to FaceTime. Both technologies have been neglected in the last two years, so it would be nice for both services get a little much-needed care.
On the iCloud side, it’d be nice if the service would actually work across all apps like it should. It would also be nice if iCloud could act more like the hard drive we all want it to be. No more 30 day, 1000 image limits for PhotoStream. That’d be a really great start.
On FaceTime, getting the ability to call more than one person would be an excellent addition that would make the service more comparable to services like Skype.
Other possibilities include the ability to set default apps, interface changes for the iPad, and others. We’d also like to see the ability to interact with notifications without having to actually launch the app.
The real answer to these questions is that it’s too early to know. There will be rumors about iOS 8 right up until the unveiling in June 2014. Until then, that’s all we can rely on: rumors. Always remember that some sources are more reputable than others, and that just because everyone is repeating a rumor, doesn’t make it true.
What do you want in the next version of iOS? Tell us in the comment section below!