iOS 8: 10 Ways Apple Will Revise Its Mobile Platform

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2014-03-13 Print this article Print

Although Apple just released iOS 7.1 March 10, iOS 8 is not far off. Apple will likely announce the new version at its Worldwide Developers Conference in June, a scant three months away. As that time approaches, speculation is already percolating briskly on the Web about what Apple might have planned for its next mobile software update. The fact that one would be considering iOS 8 right now is significant since it was just a couple of days ago that Apple launched iOS 7.1, the biggest update to its latest mobile operating system. That upgrade brought several new features, including a streamlined interface and better performance. It also satisfied Apple fanatics who can't wait to buy a car that can connect to Siri by integrating CarPlay into the system. But in the fast-moving technology industry, iOS 7.1 has already become old news. The Apple world has turned its attention to iOS 8. Take a look at this eWEEK slide show to find out what kinds of new features and improvements customers can expect in the next version of Apple's mobile OS.

  • iOS 8: 10 Ways Apple Will Revise Its Mobile Platform

    by Don Reisinger
    1 - iOS 8: 10 Ways Apple Will Revise Its Mobile Platform
  • Few Interface Improvements

    Although some interface improvements made their way into iOS 7.1, it's unlikely that Apple will spend too much time upgrading its operating system's look and feel in iOS 8. Apple last year launched the facelift iOS needed, and is now rumored to be working on mostly under-the-hood improvements to the platform.
    2 - Few Interface Improvements
  • It's All About Health

    As Samsung showed at Mobile World Congress in February with new apps and a fitness tracker, the mobile space is seeing a grand opportunity in health. Several reports have suggested that Apple is seeing a possibility in that market, as well, and might be working on an app to help improve user health. The company might also be working on something that will detect heart attacks. Health appears to be at the center of Apple's plans for iOS 8.
    3 - It's All About Health
  • More M7 Coprocessor Integration

    Following that, it's entirely possible that the M7 Coprocessor in the iPhone 5S could be integrated more effectively with other apps. Apple could integrate the M7 in the health-related app (or apps) it has planned, and will reportedly use it in other interesting ways, including through the use of biosensors. It should be very interesting to see what comes of the M7.
    4 - More M7 Coprocessor Integration
  • iWatch Integration

    Let's make this clear up front: There's no telling right now whether Apple will actually launch an iWatch this year. But considering the number of rumors surrounding the device, it certainly seems likely. And if and when the iWatch is announced, you can expect it to be fully integrated with iOS 8. How? We'll just have to wait and see, but all signs point to it being designed to work with the operating system.
    5 - iWatch Integration
  • Improved Maps Applications

    Maps appear to be a major focus for Apple in iOS 8. In fact, a recent Wall Street Journal report claims Apple is hard at work on improving Maps' accuracy and reliability when navigating. The app will also feature improved icons and more points of interest, the report claims. Chances are that at least one of these improvements will turn out to be true.
    6 - Improved Maps Applications
  • Breaking iTunes Radio Out

    A more recent announcement, it appears now that Apple is considering breaking iTunes Radio out of iTunes and turning it into a standalone app. The company is seeing enough of an uptick in usage that it deems iTunes Radio capable enough to sit outside the auspices of iTunes. The move might also be business-related, since the more readily available iTunes Radio is, the greater Apple's chances are of getting users to make purchases after streaming tracks.
    7 - Breaking iTunes Radio Out
  • The Time Is Right for Multiuser Support

    With Android now supporting multiple users, it seems only logical that Apple would follow in Google's footsteps and offer multiple user support in iOS 8. For iPhone owners who typically don't share their devices, that might not matter much. However, in homes with one iPad, having multiple user support is a highly sought-after feature. Hopefully, Apple realizes that.
    8 - The Time Is Right for Multiuser Support
  • More TouchID Functionality

    When Apple announced the TouchID fingerprint sensor in the iPhone 5S, the company said it was designed with security in mind. But after users actually got their hands on the device, they found that its functionality and usability left much to be desired. Let's hope Apple finds a way to bring more functionality to iOS 8 by leveraging its fingerprint technology. The possibilities appear to be endless.
    9 - More TouchID Functionality
  • Finally, a Mobile Payment System From Apple

    Since the mobile-payment craze kicked off a couple of years ago, there's been talk of Apple planning its own service. So far, however, the company has balked. Now there's talk again of Apple launching a mobile-payment service that uses the security gained from TouchID and the credit card information on file with iTunes. It seems like a nice marriage, but will it happen? Here's hoping.
    10 - Finally, a Mobile Payment System From Apple
  • Apple Will Develop a Smarter Siri

    Siri has been getting upgrades each time Apple launches iOS updates, so it's perhaps no stretch to assume that the personal virtual assistant will get another bump in functionality with iOS 8. Reports claim that Siri will be "smarter" and more capable of handling user questions and requests. Siri has certainly gotten better over the years, but it's still a ways from being the true personal virtual assistant Apple wants it to be.
    11 - Apple Will Develop a Smarter Siri

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