Monday, July 22

What’s new in iOS 7.1?

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As you may be aware, Apple updated its mobile operating system to version 7.1 yesterday. According to the iOS official release page, “iOS 7.1 The most advanced mobile OS keeps advancing. iOS 7.1 is packed with interface refinements, bug fixes, improvements, and new features. Apple CarPlay introduces a better way to use iPhone while driving. And you can now control exactly how long Siri listens and more.”

Apple’s CarPlay will be available in a number of new cars in 2014 and will provide you with your phone’s functionality, think GPS, etc, on your car’s built-in display. It’s a smarter, safer way to make calls, get directions, or play music from your iPhone while in the car. Just plug in your iPhone and go.”

Improvements included in the update also make Siri better, by giving you control of when she stops listening to your commands and you can automatically enable HDR mode on your iPhone 5S. The interface has also been slightly tweaked, with the old rectangular phone controls being replaced with circles and a new “month” view in the calendar which is a lot more in line with iOS’s overall aesthetic.

In addition to these changes, Touch ID recognition has been improved, an occasional homescreen crash has been fixed, and iPhone 4 users will be able to enjoy better performance and responsiveness.

Other user facing changes included bolder fonts on the keyboard, and the backgrounds and keys have also darkened up a touch. This makes it a little easier to see in bright sunshine and being in Africa, this is much appreciated. The keyboard did receive more than just cosmetic changes though, as the shift key has received some additional functionality. Arstechnica writes:

The shift key can be in one of three states—off, on, or in Caps Lock mode—but in iOS 7.0, it isn’t immediately obvious from looking at the key just which of the three states it’s in. In both the light and dark keyboards in iOS 7.1, a shift key in the “off” position is grey, one in the “on” position is white, and one in Caps Lock mode has a different icon. The Delete key is similarly grey when inactive and white when active, but since your finger will be obscuring the delete key every time you use it, you won’t notice it as much.”

Head to settings, then General, and finally Software Update to grab the 266MB update and enjoy the best version of iOS yet.

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