As we get closer to Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June 2018, rumours are suggesting that new features will be delayed in favour of improving stability and implementing bug fixes. In the wake of Apple slowing down iPhones due to battery issues, it is believed that iOS 12 will attempt to fix iOS 11’s issues, providing a phone that “just works” again.
The rollout of iOS 11 was riddled with bugs and crashes. Even now, months after the public release date, users are not happy with the performance of their iPhones. Apple could address all of these issues at once with their next major update, after it was revealed that iOS 11.3 will allow users to turn off performance throttling and see their battery health in more detail. The news that iOS 12 will focus on stability rather than new features will be more pleasing to users of older devices but it leaves users of newer phones disappointed for the continued lack of customisation across iOS devices.
What do we know about iOS 12?
Apple is set to focus on developing augmented reality within apps, especially games. After the introduction of ARKit for developers in iOS 11, Apple will try to take it further and expand in iOS 12. An example of the use of AR is Ikea’s Place app which allows users to try out new furniture by placing it around their house using their iPhone’s camera.
Rumours have also suggested improvements to the stock Health app and better parental controls. For now, the list of new features is bare and these are not even confirmed yet. Apple might surprise us later this year but the reports regarding a preference towards stability make sense since the company’s reputation for providing seamless devices that “just work” has taken a massive hit.
Which features did not make an appearance in iOS 11?
There are other features that were rumoured to come to iOS 11 but didn’t make an appearance such as a system wide “dark mode”. The closest users got was a “smart invert” function which unfortunately doesn’t cover many third-party applications and other media. Group FaceTime calls were also expected but they did not make it to iOS 11 either. Another feature that users miss, especially in a time where smartphone screens are getting bigger, is the ability to view apps in split screen. Last year’s update added that functionality for iPads but it is still missing on iPhones.
What do people want to see in iOS?
So far, Apple has always made some sort of visual and functional change to its Control Centre. Thus, it will be interesting to see whether iOS 12 will keep the current layout, perhaps adding more customisable toggles. Another area where users want to see improvements is the handling of notifications on the lock screen, perhaps by grouping them together or sorting them by app instead of chronologically.
Every year the gap between Android and iOS in terms of customisability widens and people are desperate for changes. The static home screen has barely changed in the history of iOS apart from the icon redesign in iOS 7. According to reports, Apple was planning a home screen refresh for this year but it is one of the features that will probably be delayed for next year.
Are you satisfied with iOS or are you disappointed about the lack of new features this year?