Apple has launched an update to its iPhone operating system, iOS. The latest update, iOS 7.1, fixes several bugs, adds new features and makes a few changes to the design of the user interface. The update is available now to download, and you can do so either with your phone or by plugging in and using iTunes to update.
Perhaps the most exciting new feature is CarPlay. Cars that include this will be able to bring up features from the iPhone onto their inbuilt infotainment systems. These include the core phone functionality of making and receiving calls and messages. Also included in maps, allowing your car infotainment dashboard to show you the GPS directions as you drive. There’s also music, and support for some third party music apps. This allows you to use your steering wheel music controls on the iPhone.
CarPlay will be available on cars from Honda, Hyundai, Mercades, Volvo and Ferrari this year, and from many other manufacturers in future. Notably Land Rover, Mitsubishi, Ford, Jaguar, BMW, Peugeot, Citroen and Toyota, among others.
Apple have sadly decided to remove one unofficial feature of iOS 7. When iOS removed the limits on the number of apps in folders, it also ‘accidentally’ introduced the ability to nest folders inside of other folders. This was great for those who loved keeping their phones super organised, as it allowed them to create sub-categories. For instance you might have a sports folder which had a folder inside it for running and another folder for cycling. This was regarded by Apple as a bug and removed in iOS 7. Those who had their folders like this may want to a spend some time adjusting where there apps are now and creating new folders.
Design has changed for many apps subtlety, but there’s also some larger changes. The first you’ll likely notice is the slide to unlock button has changed. It now has an animated affect that looks like a light moving across the words. Other changes include to the phone app, where the slide to answer button has changed away from the previous rectangular design to something simpler. The end call button now is a circle, like the other phone icons. Other apps have seen small design changes including Weather and Calender. Some green icons have also seen their shades altered. The keyboard has also seen design changes.
Within the first 24 hours almost six percent of devices updated, which is usual for Apple updates. If you’re not part of the early adopters then you can update in your own time when you’ve got a spare half hour. The update isn’t exactly quick, so we recommend waiting until you’re not going to need your phone in the immediate future.
Other updates include bug fixes such as improving performance issues iPhone 4 devices had with iOS7 and fixing some issues with fingerprint recognition on the iPhone 5s.
There’s also references in the code to two new iPad models that haven’t yet been announced. These are simply numbers “4,3″ and “4,6″ but some clever clogs has worked out these probably mean there will be updates to iPad Mini and iPad Air soon.