Apple unveils iOS 8, the biggest release since the launch of the App Store

Apple today unveiled iOS 8, the biggest release since the launch of the App Store, giving users incredible new features and developers the tools to create amazing new apps. iOS 8 delivers a simpler, faster and more intuitive user experience, including iCloud Photo Library, allowing you to enjoy your photos and videos more easily across your devices; new Messages features to easily share voice, video or photos with just a swipe; and an entirely new Health app that gives you a clear overview of your health and fitness data all in one place. iOS 8 also includes predictive typing for Apple’s QuickType keyboard; Family Sharing, the easiest way to share purchases, photos and calendars within the same household; and iCloud Drive, so you can store files and access them from anywhere.

“iOS 8 offers simpler, faster and more intuitive ways to use your device with incredible new features like iCloud Photo Library, a new Messages app, the QuickType keyboard and an entirely new Health app,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, in a statement. “We’re also giving developers amazing new tools to make managing your health and your home from your devices an integrated, simple and secure experience.”

In iOS 8, the Photos app and iCloud Photo Library give you access to all of your photos and videos anytime, anywhere. Your photos are easy to find and are organized consistently across your enabled devices. The Photos app can automatically straighten horizons and with smart editing tools, you can quickly adjust light and color or access individual tools for deeper fine-tuning. With iCloud Photo Library, every adjustment and effect is automatically updated across your devices.

Conversations in Messages become more immersive with the ability to communicate with just a swipe. Tap to Talk allows you to share your voice and the same simple gesture also works for sharing videos and photos within Messages. Group messaging now gives you the ability to add and remove contacts, leave a conversation and the option to not be disturbed. Users can easily browse through all of the photos and videos within a conversation and share multiple photos and videos at once. You can choose to share your current location from within Messages for an hour, a day or longer.

The new Health app gathers the information you choose from your various health apps and fitness devices, and provides you with a clear and current overview in one place. iOS 8 offers developers the ability for health and fitness apps to communicate with each other. With your permission, each app can use specific information from other apps to provide a more comprehensive way to manage your health and fitness. For example, the Nike+ apps using NikeFuel will be able to pull in other key HealthKit metrics such as sleep and nutrition to build a custom user profile and improve athletic performance.

New predictive typing for Apple’s QuickType keyboard is smarter and more personalized, and intelligently takes context into account, such as who the recipient is and in which app you’re typing. QuickType understands the way you communicate, suggesting favorite phrases, so you can write entire sentences with just a few taps. What the keyboard learns is encrypted on your device and never sent to the cloud.

iOS 8 introduces Family Sharing, making it easier than ever to communicate and share purchases, photos and calendars within the same household. Family members can browse and download each other’s iTunes, iBooks or App Store purchases. Up to six members can participate, each with their own Apple ID. Parents can create Apple IDs for children, which includes Ask to Buy, requiring parental permission for purchases. Family Sharing automatically keeps everyone connected by creating a shared family photo stream, shared calendar and provides an option for locating family members and their devices.

With iCloud Drive, documents of any type can be safely stored, accessed and edited across your devices. Make edits on one device and the most up-to-date version of your documents will be available across all devices, whether an iOS device, Mac, Windows PC or on www.icloud.com. iCloud Drive brings a whole new level of collaboration between apps, providing seamless access and the ability to work on the same file across multiple apps.

For Enterprise, iOS 8 builds on the new IT model for a mobilized workforce by improving the way users are informed of how their devices are configured, managed or restricted. iOS 8 offers expanded security and management improvements as well as new productivity features, including an expanded level of data protection for key built-in apps, the ability to set your out of office response, see your colleague’s availability when scheduling a meeting and support for configurable Thread Notifications in Mail.

Additional iOS 8 features include:

• design enhancements that build off the stunning interface of iOS 7, bringing interactive notifications, quick access to key contacts, the ability to quickly switch back and forth between the inbox and drafts in Mail, as well as intelligent suggestions;

• extended Spotlight capabilities that give you results beyond what’s on your device, including articles from Wikipedia, findings from the news and results from places nearby; and

• greater continuity between iPhone, iPad and Mac, including Handoff to start an activity on one device and finish on another, along with Instant Hotspot and the ability to make and receive calls and send SMS and MMS messages from your Mac or iPad.

The iOS 8 beta software and SDK are available immediately for iOS Developer Program members at developer.apple.com. iOS 8 will be available this fall as a free software update for iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5s, iPod touch® 5th generation, iPad 2, iPad with Retina display, iPad Air, iPad mini and iPad mini with Retina display. iCloud Photo Library and iCloud Drive use your iCloud storage with the first 5GB free. Features are subject to change. Some features may not be available in all regions or all languages.

Source: Apple Inc.

Related articles:
Apple releases iOS 8 SDK with over 4,000 new APIs – June 2, 2014
Apple announces OS X Yosemite for Macintosh – June 2, 2014

30 Comments

      1. Why wouldn’t we expect new hardware? Ever since Apple quit showcasing as much at MacWorld, the WWDC has been the stage for hardware announcements.

        2012 – New Macbook Airs, Macbook Pro Retina display, as well as Mountain Lion and iOS 6

        2013 – Redesigned Mac Pro, Macbook Air, airport time capsule and airport extreme, as well as Mavericks, iOS 7, iWork for iCloud, and iTunes radio

        In other words, the WWDC is not just for developers in recent years. I really hope there’s another Apple event within the next month or so…

        1. Good grief, Apple does something twice and it becomes a rule? Why are people so desperate to replace after one year that which they were so excited to get just one year ago? What’s the point? In just one years time you’ll be so desperate to replace it with something else. They will update them when they have something to update them with. All the sense of entitlement in the world won’t make them do it sooner.

          Having said that, they better release a 128 qubit quantum computer with infinite ether storage and gigatron thunderdrives next week or they’re doomed.

          1. Not twice. Try nearly every year since 2001. I just gave the latest 2 years as examples. Without Macworld, Apple now generally uses WWDC as the stage for new hardware.

            Also, this is not about replacing year-old hardware. This is about refreshing hardware that hasn’t been refreshed for several years. 817 days since the last AppleTV, 991 days since the last display update, 587 days since the last Mac Mini (data retrieved from http://buyersguide.macrumors.com). Notice there are quite a few more “Don’t Buy” and “Caution” than there are “Buy Now”.

            So yeah, it’s not ridiculous for us to expect at least one new hardware announcement.

    1. Those who dwell excessively on hardware are Fandroid. Go there. All good things come to the Apple faithful who wait. And not much longer. Not very familiar with Apple product and announcement release cycles are you?

      1. Look Pete, I’ve been an Apple fan since 2005. I’ve spend THOUSANDS of $$ on Apple hardware, I’ve converted many family and friends (they call me an Apple fanatic, I wonder why). So I take it as a HUGE insult you calling me a fan of CRAPdroinds.
        What pisses me off is this moron Tim Cook teasing us for years (literally) with “great” hardware and nothing really significant has been delivered. I am so sick of him I now dislike him as plain old lying politician.
        MAN! I MISS STEVE!

        1. I understand but what is it you NEED or must have? Bigger iPhones (and other devices no doubt) are coming soon. This was a Developers event. Software is what makes all these devices great so I think it important to appreciate what Apple is doing there and that it is just as important as a new toy. New toys work with great software and great developers who develop it. Nobody else will do it (iWatch, iTV, etc.) as well as Apple will so hang tight.

        2. Well said.

          No new products announced for the first time in years is disconcerting.

          The Apple fanboys can hide behind developers conference if it gives them comfort.

          But Tim’s pipe dream promises have again — failed to materialize up until this day.

          Oh, and a flatter OSX is no achievement in the world of graphic design navigation.

          Sorry, it is what it is.

    1. I loved every minute of it. Says Apple ecosystem is very alive and well and ready to kick Android further face first into the dirt. It takes a lot to get Developers excited and they were VERY excited. That means more great stuff for us ultimately.

      1. I loved every minute of it, too. No hardware announcements but those will be announced later in the year. They’re coming soon enough to take advantage of what we saw today. Apple is now primed to take over the health market, the home automation market. Apple also introduced a new programming language. Not too shabby. Plus, the updates to iOS and OS X look promising. I thought today was one of the better WWDC keynotes.

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