ios 7 beta review


Beware the picture-heavy post!

Alright, so an anon asked me to do a review of iOS 7 and show what it looks like. I should mention that I have the very first beta edition, and I only got this because I’m registered as an Apple Developer. So, this is in no way, shape, or form available to the general public yet.f

The pictures above honestly barely scrape the surface of the design changes that they’ve made, but Tumblr only allows 10 pictures per post so I thought I would choose the most drastic changes and just tell you about the rest.

First of all, I would like to say that I do like the changes that they’ve made. I think that the design change looks nice and modern, and I think it’s nice looking. Let’s face it: the design in iOS 6 is getting tired and old. Some of those design elements have been the same since the iPhone first came out, with iOS 1. It was definitely time for a change.

There are about a hundred things that I can’t show you on the pictures above that make my easily-amused heart very happy. Some of those are the transitions. The devil is in the details, which is something Apple is most definitely familiar with. iOS 7 is full of tiny little details that make it feel like a more comprehensive experience.

The transitions are neat. When you go to the home screen, the icons do what they’ve done before (i.e. swoop in from the periphery of the screen) but it seems a little less of a sharp transition and more of a fun one. When you send a text message, instead of just floating straight up, it does a little jiggle like you’ve peeled away a Post-It and are putting it up on the screen. 

The transparencies are nice too. Many apps, when they have some space, are transparent. The disclaimer here is that since the third party developers have not had a chance to update their apps yet, all of the non-Apple stock apps look exactly the same. 

The folders have been updated to be shown in panes now. When you tap on a folder, it zooms to the entire folder, which I think does a lot to make the screen less busy and more understandable. I’ve seen my mom and dad tap on apps not inside the folder that’s open expecting them to open and then get frustrated when they have to tap them multiple times. 

The Phone app has been given quite a facelift (no picture, sorry). When you tap a number, the button goes transparent and the color of the number changes to white, so you see your background through the button and know that you’ve definitely pressed it. 

You can change modes on the Camera app simply by sliding the bar along the bottom as you please. You can now change to video, enable HDR, switch to panorama, and a couple of other things very easily, and with one swipe or tap.

Game Center has been given a much-needed facelift as well. I’m not sure about you, but the whole pool table felt look didn’t do much for me. This, however, is new and different, and I think it looks cool and fun.

The Music app has undergone a few changes, but the biggest of these is iTunes Radio. You can add an artist, genre, or song and iTunes will take care of the rest, creating a radio station. It seems to be similar to Pandora, but I’m not sure as I haven’t had the chance to play around with it yet.

The Command Center is my favorite enhancement by FAR. You can change all of those options that I used to get annoyed changing because I had to go into the Settings menu and find them. You can put the iPhone into Airplane Mode, turn WiFi and Bluetooth on or off, enable Do Not Disturb, and lock screen orientation. In addition, you can adjust brightness, play music with titles, volume, and time elapsed visible. You can also turn on AirDrop (a feature that enables easy sharing via Bluetooth and WiFi from one iOS 7 device to another). My favorite thing about this enhancement is that there is now a NATIVE FLASHLIGHT, and you can turn it on or off with the tap of a button in Command Center. You can also access your Clock, Calculator, and Camera apps right from Command Center. I am deeply in love with this feature.

I also love how the messages look. I think it’s long-overdue. The shiny bubbles were getting irritating, truth be told. (Bow tie added to protect the innocent. ;) )

The new Notification Center is quite nice. It shows you a Today view with your calendar for the day right there. It tells you what the weather is (a feature I used all the time…I do wish it showed the forecast like the old one did though). If you tap “All”, that’s where your app notifications are, and “Missed” is presumably your missed calls (I can’t confirm this though, since mine is empty). 

The new task manager (that thing that pops up when you double click the button on the iPhone) is completely different. Now, it shows you a screenshot of the app just as you left it above the icon. So now you might remember why you had an app open before you accidentally close it (I’ve lost count the number of times that I’ve done that). To close an app, you swipe the screenshot up. It’s as simple as that. It’s much easier, in my opinion, than double click, tap and hold, tap red circle. Much faster. 

A couple of things irk me, but honestly they’re tiny things. The Messages app doesn’t auto-scroll to the bottom like it used to. And the transitions are maybe a couple of milliseconds too slow. But overall, I love the new iOS so far. 

One thing to be emphasized is that this is THE FIRST BETA. That means that this is the very very first build (and by all accounts, this build was quite rushed so that they could debut it at their conference), which means that iOS 7 will likely change A LOT before its launch in the fall. But this is the new iOS so far. I must say, I do like it a lot. 

If you guys have any questions about the new iOS (ASIDE FROM HOW TO GET IT. I won’t send you the download or anything, I’m not into that illegal shady nonsense especially since I sorta want to work for the FBI computer crime division some day and they frown on that), send me an ask and I’ll be happy to answer them.