With every major iOS update, Apple likes to provide a few basic (but vital) tweaks to its infrastructure as well as a handful of forward-thinking features. Its latest iteration, iOS 9, is no different. Not only does it bring much need reworkings to the iPhone 6, but it also brings a few new apps to your home screen as well. Here are just a few of the highlights you can expect when iOS 9 drops in the fall:
Your News, Your Way
“News” is a brand new app that looks to offer a user-friendly and customizable environment for reading all of your favorite news and special-interest publications. Think of it as a one-stop shop for all of the stuff you read on your morning subway commute.
By working directly with content providers, Apple hopes to provide a richer reading experience where every article is formatted and optimized specifically for the device you are using. “News” replaces the recently discontinued “Newsstand”, which failed to attract a huge user base. “News” casts a much wider net of free content, so it should have a much easier time catching on.
Maps That Matter
Let’s face it, Apple Maps has had a rough time competing with Google Maps. After a somewhat disastrous launch, Apple never pulled people back in, even as refinements and bug fixes dramatically improved the app’s functionality.
However, iOS 9 may be a game changer. It features a totally reworked “Maps” that caters more heavily to city dwellers who might need to use multiple forms of transit on any given trip. “Maps” is now full integrated with train and bus lines, and the “Nearby” function quickly points you in the direction of the nearest restaurants and shops. These features have been available for years, but Apple has brought them together into one user-friendly environment.
A Fatter Wallet
“Wallet” is one of those apps that lives and dies by how quickly retailers are willing to jump on board and offer in-store support. With the newest update, Apple Pay adds support for Discover cards and several store-specific cards, such as JCPenney and Kohls. Apple Pay even tracks your reward programs, such as Walgreens Balance Rewards, Dunkin’ Donuts DD Perks and MyPanera.
If you want to use Apple Pay, just double click the Home button to quickly bring “Wallet” up. With each new upgrade, you get another step closer to leaving your real wallet at home. Just don’t forget your phone.
A Better Search
The search function on iOS has always been a bit of an after thought. You are probably so familiar with the layout of your apps and the content in your media folders that searching isn’t a necessity. Searching typically means that something has been lost, and you rarely “lose” anything on your iPhone.
So, it makes since that Apple has reimagined the search function to let you reach your stuff a little faster. Not only does “Search” track your most contacted apps, but it also searches your physical surroundings. If you search for “beer,” for example, iOS,9 pulls up your “Untappd” app and lets you know what watering holes are nearby.