I spent a summer on the beta version of iOS 17, and it proved to me that the best iPhone features don’t need to be flashy; they need to work well.
Apple users are focused on the iPhone this month, whether they are purchasing a new iPhone 15 or upgrading an older model with iOS 17, which Apple officially rolled out today.
ZDNet has extensively covered the slew of features in iOS 17, which represents the next generation of iPhone software, since it first opened for developer beta in June. Apple is focusing on providing a clear experience with this year’s software version. They are giving you a familiar iPhone experience with subtle improvements that do not require a dramatic shift in lifestyle.
After using an iPhone on iOS 17 all summer long, I realized that it was my big takeaway. I had initially prepared to write about all the dazzling new features with billboard-ready advertising. Instead, I realize that the latest iPhone software is good not because of any sweet animations or colour pops but because it improves everything I’m already doing on the iPhone.
Today or sometime later, get ready your iPhone for iOS 17 and be aware of this list of useful (and subtle) features.
- New mode Swipe to reply on iMessage: Whether family members, roommates, or fantasy sports players are having a group chat, there are moments when conversations run long, and you want to respond to a specific message. On iMessage, you can now swipe sideways on a text bubble to leave a direct reply. You will still appear as a new entry in the group chat, but your response will also be attached to the corresponding entry.message.
- Also Improved adaptive autocorrect: iOS 17 uses a transformer language model to improve its understanding of your typing habits and spelling of specific words, in addition to no longer autocorrecting that word to “duck” or “ducking.” I often type with the romanization of words, so it’s refreshing not to have to revert an autocorrect because the iPhone thinks I meant to type something else.
- Auto-removing one-time passcodes in new iOS: Now, when the iPhone auto-fills a confirmation number for two-factor logins, whether it pulls it from your iMessage or Mail, it can automatically remove the coded message shortly after.
- No more “Hi Siri” and longer conversations in iOS 17: Calling for Apple’s voice assistant with “Hi Siri” before every prompt is more unnatural than anything else. iOS 17 enables you to activate the feature simply by saying “Siri.” Additionally, the voice assistant can hold longer conversations and respond to multiple prompts in a single session.
- Leveler in the Camera app in new update: When I demonstrated iOS 17 to my parents, the camera leveller received more oohs and aahs than any other hidden feature. The low-key addition to the camera experience makes framing shots very easy, whether you’re capturing a landscape, a family portrait, or a top-down of a main course.
- Live activities in StandBy Mode in new update: StandBy Mode is arguably the flashiest feature on iOS 17. It transforms your iPhone into an ambient smart display when you dock it sideways on a MagSafe charger. But did you know that StandBy Mode can also display Live Activities, ranging from sports scores to Uber pickups?
- Offline maps in Apple Maps in the new OS: Apple Maps now allows you to download sections of areas for offline navigation, similar to Google Maps. This becomes particularly helpful when you travel to places with little to no cellular or Wi-Fi service.
- Interactive widgets In new update: In 2020, iOS 14 introduced home screen widgets. Three years later, iOS 17 finally allows you to interact with those components without launching the respective apps. You can now hit play and pause on the Apple Music widget, check off your Reminders, or toggle smart home lights.
What is your opinion on iOS 17? Did I miss any other useful but subtle features? Please let me know in the comments below.