The iOS 7: What’s New?

9017481784_62b5c2dba3Apple’s beta version of iOS 7 may not be “the biggest change to iOS since the iPhone,” as company CEO Tim Cook declared during the World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) this past June. Nonetheless, it does have a host of nifty new features that should please both die-hard Mac cultists as well as power users looking for upgraded features. Here’s a glance at some of those new capabilities, as reported by Entrepreneur:

Returning to the previous page doesn’t require hitting a back button, thanks to iOS 7’s “swipe and go” feature.

  • Viewing how much time is left before the alarm goes off is as simple as tapping the snooze button.
  • Taking a cue from Amazon, the app store now has a wish-list function.
  • Syncing passwords, credit numbers, and other personal info across multiple devices are now a snap, thanks to iCloud’s updated Keychain feature.
  • Passbook was already an ideal way to store virtual tickets and coupons, but the new version allows users to do so with just a QR code.
  • Have you ever been recording a video on your iPhone and wished you could zoom in one action? Well, now you can.

A Brave New Look

Along with these functionality changes are a number of cosmetic renovations that will make the new OS more visually pleasing than its predecessors. For example, the keyboard numbers will display portions of the background image when users push them. For those who dislike cluttered screens, iOS 7 will give them the ability to hide the icons for the built-in features that come with every device.

Apparently the geniuses at Apple felt that static images are just so 20th century to keep around. Those who find this feature disquieting will be able to shut it off.

Things We Couldn’t Confirm

Rumors are swirling about features the final version will have that haven’t been officially announced. One of these is “folder within a folder” — organization that will allow users to stack collections of documents and other data in a hierarchical fashion. Word on the street is that corner swiping and pinch closing of folders will also find their way into the final version that’s released to the public. It’s hard to gauge the accuracy of these stories as right now only approved developers have access to the OS and they’re a pretty tight-lipped bunch.

Short of Perfection, But Still a Leap Forward

As points out, iOS 7 falls short on other longed-for changes, like the ability to use third-party browsers. Nonetheless, the new operating system for mobile devices is a step in the right direction. This is good news for companies like, who are still awaiting news from Cook as to how Apple envisions its entrance into the world of TV. Now if we can only get that “phone bump” feature the other guys have.

Image by Vince Viloria pursuant to the terms of his Creative Commons license.

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