While the days will remain the same, in the past a new iOS generally preceded the release of new model phones by a week but this year will see iOS 8 released the day before the two iPhone 6 models that will go on sale next Thursday.

iOS 8

Apple iOS 8 releasing next week

That means September 17th will be the day that the world sees iOS 8 in all its glory. And while Apple Inc. NASDAQ:AAPL made a number of iOS 8’s features public some time ago, we now know most of what will come with the update including Apple Pay.

iOS 8, at release, will be immediately available for iPhone 4S, 5, 5s, 5c, iPad 2, third-gen iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini and iPad mini with Retina display.

iOS 8 will be the second release of a new mobile operating system under the direction of head designer Jony Ive and now software head Craig Federighi. The latter was installed after Scott Forstall was fired by Tim Cook for his unwillingness to accept blame for the debacle that was Apple Maps when it was released with a bug count similar to the amount you would find fluttering about a single light bulb in the Amazon rainforest.

Ive is the one responsible for the “flattening” of iOS 7 and iOS 8 will remain visually the same but rounded out with additions and improvements.

Today’s announcements

Today’s event, taking place at the Flint Performing Arts Center in Apple’s hometown of Cupertino, CA showed Apple’s desire to use iOS as a bridge between its new phones and wearables among other features.

Among the many new additions, iOS 8 will feature better functionality and sharing between other Apple devices and iCloud, iPay and add voice and video messaging to Messages. Handoff, has been added to iOS which lets users begin a task such as writing an email on the iPhone only to finish it on the iPad or Mac desktop. The keyboard has been souped-up yet at the same time iOS 8 will allow users to install third-party keyboards if they fancy it, a big dissension from Apple’s closed-garden philosophy that sent many to Android.

HomeKit is also a major addition to iOS 8. HomeKit will allow developers to integrate controls for numerous smart-home gadgets and appliances.

Each of these new additions to iOS are worthy of a piece of their own and ValueWalk will address them again when iOS goes live next week.