Apple potentially has numerous major product releases ahead in the coming months, but top of the list in importance is possibly the new iOS 10 operating system. This is, after all, the template upon which Apple bases its mobile devices in the calendar year, and developers in particular will be especially looking forward to getting their hands on the iOS 10 release.

It is normal procedure for Apple to introduce the latest version of iOS during the company’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference, usually held in June. It certainly seems that the expected schedule will be followed once again this year, based on analysis of the pre-booked schedule at the usual venue for the event, the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California. With all other weeks for June being fully blacked out, it is now anticipated that the Worldwide Developers Conference will take place on Monday, June 13, at which point developers will receive a beta version of iOS 10.

Obviously the new version of iOS 10 is expected to reveal several new features, so here ValueWalk examines some of the likely candidates for this operating system.

iOS 10: The Wish List

iOS 10 – iCloud voicemail

One of the features that it is known that Apple has been testing behind closed doors is an iCloud voicemail service that employs Siri in order to improve call handling. Reports indicate that this new system utilizes the personal assistant software to answer calls, transcribing voicemail messages from the conversation.

It has been reported by Business Insider that the new service will enable Siri to take calls when users are unavailable, as opposed to utilizing the standard digital audio recorder. This will essentially enable Siri to transmit up-to-date information to callers, including where users are presently located, and why it is impossible for them to take the calls in question.

This is just one way in which Siri will play a wider role in iOS 10, and it is certainly expected that the personal assistant will be broadly updated, as the technology becomes more important in the technology landscape. In many ways this is a timely decision, as the concept of artificial intelligence has been particularly heightened by the match on the board game Go between the Google AlphaGo AI system and its human adversary.

Find My Friends

iOS 10 is also expected to significantly update the Find My Friends app, which has remained pretty much in stasis since it was introduced for the first time back in 2011. This can be considered very much an ageing part of the operating system, considering that it first appeared with iOS 5, and now seems something of a speck on the horizon. But patents indicate that Apple is ready to update the system and offer more sophisticated functionality.

In the filing submitted by the California-based company, Apple describes a system that will enable users to detect where their friends are located, whether they are available to talk, and the existing status of their smartphone. This obviously ties in with the previous voicemail function, making iOS 10, and potentially the forthcoming iPhone 7, significantly more sophisticated.

The Apple patent describes the way that the new system will function. “The operating status of the second mobile phone is displayed on a display of the first mobile phone as a part of contact information of the remote user associated with the second mobile phone, where the operating status includes current locality of the second mobile phone.”

Control Center

Apple has frequently been criticized for the lack of customization options with regard to both iOS and its hardware devices, but the corporation has made some effort to address this over the last few years. With this in mind, it is widely expected that the iOS 10 operating system will feature more customization tools for the Control Center that drives the entire system.

It is also probable with regard to this feature that 3D Touch will play an important role in iOS 10, as Apple attempts to make the most of the new functionality that it introduced last year. This is particularly significant, as this technology can be seen as an advantage over Samsung, which has struggled to deliver a rival system.

Home app

The Apple HomeKit application is still very much in its embryonic stages, but there is no doubt that such smart home technology will become more important in the near future. Apple is attempting to get on board early in what will surely be a growth area in the coming years, and it is expected that HomeKit will be expanded significantly in iOS 10.

Central to this will be the introduction of a brand new app in the operating system which is expected to be named simply Home. The app will serve as a hub for communication with smart home devices, according to reports. Apple is set to increase its activity in both the smart home and in-car technology niches in the coming years, as it continues its attempt to diversify its product range and revenue streams.

Other possible updates

It has been suggested that Apple could enable developers to offer apps with time and content limits that expire after a threshold is reached when iOS 10 is released. Some users have also requested the ability to merge Apple IDs, considering the large number that are now in the ether. Weather and stock applications could also be included in the iPad code for iOS 10 for the first time as well.

One interesting morsel of news that has emerged ahead of the release of iOS 10 is that Apple has dismissed one of the most prevalent myths related to the operating system. It has long been believed that closing apps on the iOS system will help to preserve battery life, but the manufacturer itself has now denied this.

So Apple will need to come up with some other tricks for iOS 10 in order to ensure that it delivers the sort of battery life that fans of the iPhone have sought for some time, but certainly there are some new features planned for this critical software release.