New Animoji and other features to come in the fall release, but others must wait. Apple has new features planned for its big, new iOS update—but not as many as you may expect. According to a Bloomberg report, the next sweeping iOS update, codenamed "Peace" and likely to be called iOS 12, will include a number of app redesigns, the expansion of Animoji into FaceTime, and other changes but not some of the biggest rumored changes such as redesigned home screens for iPhone and iPad. Instead of filling iOS 12 with a bevy of new features, Apple is reportedly changing strategies to allow developers more time to perfect the new features to ensure reliability. Animojis will find another home in FaceTime when iOS 12 is released. Apple is reportedly working on increasing the number of AR characters available and allowing users to don them during live FaceTime video chats. A new iPad is reportedly in the works that has Apple's FaceID camera, which would allow it to support Animojis as well (Animojis are only currently available on the iPhone X, which has the new FaceID camera). Also planned for the new software update are a revamped stock-trading app and Do Not Disturb feature, an updated search view that leans more heavily on Siri, a new interface for importing photos onto an iPad, and multiplayer augmented reality gameplay. But with all the features slated to hit iPhones and iPads this fall, even more are being held back. Apple is reportedly working on big changes to the interfaces of iPhone, iPad, and CarPlay; a redesigned Photos app; and an iPad feature that would allow apps to run with several windows at once so users can tap between them like tabs in a browser. Rather than stuff a bunch of new features into a big annual software release—like Apple has done consistently over the years—the company is reportedly focusing on perfecting new tools to reduce bugs and increase overall quality. The new strategy is designed to help both customers and Apple engineers. Users have noticed many bugs in recent iOS software updates, and a number of features like Apple Pay Cash weren't ready for Apple's big software update last fall. While introducing a lot of flashy new features on a predictable schedule has likely kept users updating the software on their Apple mobile devices consistently, it has also caused enough problems for users to notice that many software updates are arriving with bugs. For Apple engineers, more time to work on features that fundamentally change how users interact with Apple devices will hopefully reduce bugs and glitches and produce more reliable features in each update.
According to a new report from Bloomberg, Apple is switching things up for this years major updates. Instead of meeting a tight deadline and ticking all the boxes on the checklist, development teams will be able to push back some features if theyre not polished enough. Axios and Bloomberg previously reported that Apple was focusing on stability with iOS 12. You can still expect iOS 12 and macOS 10.14 this Fall (and probably new versions of watchOS and tvOS), but the WWDC keynote might be a bit shorter than in previous years. Developers can now work on new features over two years. It should help when it comes to quality issues. iOS 11 hasnt been perfect so far. Customers faced some weird bugs, such as autocorrect bugs, messages arriving out of order and the Calculator app not calculating properly. So lets look at some of the rumored features for iOS 12 and 13, macOS 10.14 and 10.15. First, Apple is going to fix some low-hanging fruits with nice-to-have features on iOS. According to Bloomberg, you can expect better parental controls with detailed stats for parents, more granular settings for Do Not Disturb, a new Stocks app and a way to invoke Siri in the iOS search bar. When it comes to flashier additions, you can expect more Animojis for the iPhone X. And if the new iPad Pro gets a Face ID camera, Apple is also probably going to bring Animojis to the new iPad Pro. In other (bigger) news, Apple is currently working on a FaceTime update that will finally let you call multiple people at once. Bloomberg says it might not be ready for iOS 12. You might be able to replace your face with an Animoji during a FaceTime call too. Youll also be able to share your augmented reality view with multiple users. For instance, you could imagine a board game that works with multiple iOS devices. After setting up the augmented reality board, all users could see the same virtual elements at the same place. iPad users will have to wait until 2019 for big new features. There could be a way to run the same app in Split View. For example, you could run the Messages app twice side-by-side to interact with two threads at once. Beyond Split View, developers will be able to integrate tabs much more easily to switch between multiple documents and views. And then, theres the elephant in the room. Bloomberg says third-party developers will be able to release iPhone and iPad apps on macOS. Details on this front are still very thin. Its unclear how its going to work and if users are going to see iOS interfaces on macOS. It seems more likely that developers will be able to use iOS frameworks on macOS, such as UIKit. This way, iOS developers could port iOS apps to the Mac without having to recode big portions of the app. Similarly, this rumor could indicate that Apple plans to merge the iOS and Mac App Stores so that users can buy an app once and run it on an iPhone, an iPad and a Mac. This wouldnt be surprising given that Apple Watch and iMessage apps can also be downloaded from the iOS App Store. If Apple is slowing down its release cycle, it could be a turning point for mobile operating system. iOS and Android have been updated at an incredible pace over the past ten years. It feels like those platforms are now nearly mature. Customers dont expect drastic changes with new major releases. At the same time, customers have become more demanding and now expect to have reliable phones.
Last month we learned that Apple is reportedly focusing on reliability and performance in iOS 12 over new features, and now were starting to hear about more of those features that will arrive in iOS at some point in the future. Bloomberg reports that Apple will bring its Animoji characters to the iPad, thanks to a new model of the tablet that has a Face ID camera. Apple is also planning to bring Animoji to FaceTime, so iOS users can put virtual emoji over their faces like the filters found in Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram. The new software features are part of a new iOS release codenamed Peace, says Bloomberg. The release will also reportedly include universal apps that work across iPhones, iPads, and Macs. These apps sound similar to Microsofts own work with Windows Universal Apps that run across pcs, tablets, phones, and even devices like the HoloLens headset. iOS 12 is also said to include improvements to the Do Not Disturb feature, and a redesigned built-in stocks app. While Apple is planning some software updates this year, it sounds like the bigger iOS features wont arrive in time for iOS 12. Bloomberg reports that redesigned home screens for the iPhone, iPad, and CarPlay wont arrive in 2018, and that iPad owners will have to wait until 2019 for significant software updates. The iPad will reportedly get tabs within apps so you can run several windows inside a single app, and the ability to run windows from the same app side-by-side. Tabs have typically been used in browsers, but macOS was updated with this feature a couple of years ago and Microsoft is also planning to bring tabs to every Windows 10 app over the course of the next year. Apple is also reportedly holding out on new Apple Pencil features, and a simple toggle in the email app to mute threads. The delays are part of what is being described as an internal culture shift at Apple, allowing engineers to work on new features without having to cram them into a single annual update. Apple Pay Cash and iCloud message sync both missed the iOS 11 update schedule, and Apple has been battling a number of software and security bugs in macOS and iOS 11 recently. If Apple can spread out its feature updates into steady point releases for iOS then this should hopefully allow for more test time and less bugs and crashes.
Although Apple reportedly scaled back its upcoming release of iOS 12 to focus on squashing bugs and improving stability, a new Bloomberg story spotlights several key features the company expects to add to the iOS and Mac platforms. Apple is currently working on an iOS update codenamed Peace and a macOS update called Liberty, expected to be released as iOS 12 and macOS 10.14, respectively. According to the report, Apples person-to-person video and audio calling app FaceTime is set to receive two major upgrades. The more interesting addition is group chat, a feature Apple introduced years ago with the Mac video calling app iChat, but removed — and never restored — when it introduced FaceTime for iOS devices. This feature may or may not make it into iOS 12, depending on the state of Apples progress when the companys Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) rolls around in June. Apple also expects to integrate iOS 11s cartoony Animojis into FaceTime, enabling participants with TrueDepth cameras to appear as various animated animals during calls. While TrueDepth and Animojis are currently exclusive to the iPhone X, the report indicates that a new iPad model will include the necessary hardware to support the feature. This feature appears likely to appear in iOS 12. The report suggests that Apple is also working on a redesigned Stocks app for iOS 12, improved Do Not Disturb feature with more granular settings, deeper integration of Siri into the iPhones search view, multi-person augmented reality game support, and an improved photo import interface for iPad. Features likely to be held back for iOS 13 include tab support for iPad apps, split-screen support for two instances of the same app, new Apple Pencil features, and email thread-specific notification muting. On the Mac front, the report claims that macOS 10.14 will continue to have the previously reported Marzipan feature, designed to let Macs run iPad and iPhone apps. Apple also reportedly plans to bring its Home app to macOS from iOS, enabling Mac computers to control HomeKit accessories, and likely serve as HomeKit hubs. iOS 12 and macOS 10.14 are expected to be debuted at Apples WWDC in June.
The company is working on a number of updates for its fall release. Apple's biggest software updates are always scheduled for a single fall release and today Bloomberg reports on some new features that we can look forward to later this year. First up, third-party apps will be able to work across iPhones, iPads and Mac computers -- a feature we've heard talk of before and will involve both iOS 12 and macOS 10.14. Additionally, the iPhone X's Animojis will be getting an upgrade, with new characters and a better menu reportedly on the way as well as the ability to use them in FaceTime. And they won't be relegated to the iPhone X for much longer. Bloomberg says Apple is working on a new iPad that will have the Face ID camera, allowing iPad users to play with Animojis as well. Some other updates include a redesigned Stocks app, more options in the Do Not Disturb setting and changes to the iPad's photo import interface. We can also expect to see Siri become more integrated into the iPhone's search function and a Digital Health tool that will let parents keep track of their children's screen time. Bloomberg reports that while Apple will continue to haul out its major updates during its annual fall release, the company is switching up how it handles updates internally. Rather than having its team focus on the upcoming fall update, Apple will now take a wider view and keep its eye on the next two years' updates. That way, if certain features aren't quite ready, they don't have to be forced out prematurely. Bloomberg's sources say that as Apple has grown, its update strategy has begun to fail, with features launching before they're fully ready, leaving them unreliable and buggy. With this new strategy, Apple hopes that will happen less often.