Final yr, after the debut of iOS 12, I put collectively a listing of options I hoped to see in iOS 13. And Apple listened!

Okay, it’s unlikely that anyone at Apple really learn my article and altered a single line of code based mostly on it, however the firm did launch a number of of the options in iOS 13 I’ve been asking for.

There’s nonetheless so much left on the desk, although. So many extra options and important modifications that appear simple to determine (if not simple to develop) that might make iPhones extra helpful. Most of the options I need are small and never price prioritizing (a number of timers, for instance). Right here’s a listing of the ten greatest and most far-reaching options I hope to see in iOS 14.

Observe: Now that iOS and iPadOS have technically cut up, this listing doesn’t embrace iPad-specific options—that’s one other listing! Additionally, there are options I’d like to see that require new iPhone {hardware}, which aren’t included right here. These are options I’d prefer to see for all iPhone fashions that might run iOS 14.

Prioritize reliability

After a surprisingly trouble-free iOS 12 launch, iOS 13 has been stuffed with issues. The discharge schedule was staggered and disjointed, and Apple was nonetheless squashing important bugs into 2020.

There are reviews that Apple has as soon as once more altered its improvement course of to enhance reliability, and it may possibly’t come quickly sufficient. The buzzwords for iOS 14 must be “stability” and “efficiency.”

Greater than any new function, precedence primary must be ensuring that the first launch of iOS 14 is quick, fluid, and trouble-free for the tons of of tens of millions of gadgets upon which it can run.

It’s in all probability an excessive amount of to anticipate all the most important iOS options to launch without delay, however be trustworthy concerning the staggered launch. Tell us which options are coming in a future iOS point-release replace so we are able to handle expectations (and so Apple’s builders aren’t speeding to fulfill an unrealistic ship date).

A wiser Siri (once more)

Apple improves Siri yearly. In iOS 13, it gave Siri a smoother and extra natural-sounding voice. It additionally added assist for music, podcast, and different audio apps to the SiriKit framework. Each are good additions (particularly that second one) however not almost what we take note of once we want yearly, fingers-crossed, for a dramatically upgraded Siri.

Final yr, I wrote this about Siri in describing my hopes for iOS 13:

Siri nonetheless lags method behind Google Assistant and Alexa in its skill to reply normal questions and gracefully carry out actions with third-party {hardware} and companies. There are such a lot of apparent shortfalls; you are able to do a Highlight seek for a flight quantity and get detailed flight information, however ask Siri and also you simply get an online search.

Siri wants higher voice recognition, quicker response occasions, and extra “enjoyable” actions like trivia and video games. It wants to offer extra correct solutions to a wider set of questions.

All of that’s nonetheless true. Siri nonetheless wants extra domains for issues like Purchasing, and each Siri and HomeKit want higher assist for extra sensible residence devices and kinds (why can’t I arm my alarm with Siri?).

siri fail reddit consumer orangenormal

Simply one other instance from the /r/SiriFails subreddit, whose very existence ought to embarrass Apple every day.

Greater than the rest, I need Apple execs to get on stage at WWDC with an enormous Siri 2.zero emblem behind them and discuss concerning the “all new Siri” that takes all the things the corporate has discovered during the last 9 years and builds a complete new digital assistant for the following decade.

One that’s smarter, quicker, works offline (it’s stunning how typically Siri doesn’t!), higher understands each your phrases and your intent, and is extra proactive about doing issues in your behalf if you’d like it to.

I’d additionally like Apple to make customers select a Male or Feminine Siri voice throughout telephone setup (or after they first improve to iOS 14), with out defaulting to the feminine voice.

Improved dictation

When Google demonstrated its new Recorder app on the Pixel 4, we couldn’t assist however really feel jealous. The telephone was doing exceptionally correct text-to-speech trascription, stay, and fully on-device. It was even sensible sufficient to place in durations between sentences.

In fact, there’s no magic {hardware} within the Pixel Four to allow this feat. It’s simply software program, and it’s even coming to older Pixel telephones.

google transcribe Google

Google’s stay transcription is spectacular, however there’s no purpose Apple couldn’t do that on most fashionable iPhones.

Apple’s dictation function (faucet the microphone on the keyboard) is a helpful option to enter textual content nearly anyplace, but it surely’s gradual and inaccurate sufficient that most individuals don’t hassle. To Apple’s credit score, it does work with no community connection. However it may possibly’t sustain with a traditional speaking tempo, and it doesn’t do an excellent job of constructing a sentence (with correct punctuation) out of your string of phrases.

Apple ought to step up its recreation right here. Make the dictation dramatically quicker and extra correct (particularly with accents), and use some intelligence to enhance phrase decisions. If I say, “you might have a humorous accent” and the dictation thinks I stated, “you might have a runny axe meant,” it ought to acknowledge that its interpretation produces a nonsense phrase and that different similar-sounding phrases produce an affordable sentence.

The beefed-up speech-to-text engine must be used throughout iOS, from Siri to voice mail transcriptions (that are terrible) to the Voice Memos app.

A greater Digital camera for all iPhones

With the iPhone 11, Apple made a number of smart enhancements to the Digital camera app interface. The graceful-scrolling zoom wheel, for instance, is a pleasant expertise that makes controlling zoom stage simpler than pinch-to-zoom.

Then, in fact, there’s Night time Mode, the place a number of seconds of publicity are mixed to provide gorgeous pictures in darkish environments.

ios13 2 video IDG

iOS 13.2 added video body fee and determination adjustment within the Digital camera app. However why just for iPhone 11?

And in iOS 13.2, Apple added the flexibility to alter video decision and body fee proper within the Digital camera app as an alternative of leaping into Settings—however solely on the iPhone 11.

There’s actually no want for any of those enhancements to be restricted to Apple’s newest telephone. Night time Mode might not be potential on the oldest iPhone {hardware}, but it surely’s definitely one thing an iPhone XS and XR can pull off. And the interface modifications haven’t any enterprise being restricted to simply the brand new telephones.

I’d like to see iOS 14 brings these and different digital camera enhancements to older telephones. Unify the interface and limit options solely to what’s technically unattainable on older {hardware}. And whereas I wouldn’t need Apple to make the Digital camera app interface too busy, I feel a “Professional” mode that lets customers modify coloration temperature, shutter pace, and ISO, could be welcome. Put it proper consistent with the Pano, Time-lapse, Portrait, and different modes, and provides images nerds as a lot guide management as potential.

A brand new residence display screen

The iPhone’s residence display screen acquired a little bit of an overhaul again in iOS 7, however hasn’t actually modified so much since then. We will now long-press on app icons to get context menus, however the residence display screen continues to be a giant grid of icons that you may’t even freely transfer round, solely reorder.

The grid of icons in all probability gained’t go away, and that’s not essentially a nasty factor. However there are many methods to alter issues with out fully upending the iOS paradigm.

I’d love Apple to introduce a dynamic icon API in order that, for instance, a climate app might change its icon to match the forecast, or an e-mail icon might present what number of unread messages you might have. On the very least, Apple ought to let builders outline separate app icons for Mild and Darkish mode.

Presently, while you drag down on the house display screen, you enter Highlight search. Earlier than you start looking out, Siri suggests a row of app icons based mostly on the apps generally used on the present time and site. Possibly this could (optionally) reside on our residence screens, now that iPhones are a lot taller?

And even when Apple is just not going to allow us to conceal apps in an app drawer à la Android, it may possibly at the very least allow us to place app icons and folders wherever we wish. Presently, you possibly can reorder them, however they at all times fill the display screen so as ranging from the higher left—there’s no option to go away a clean house.

Notifications want an overhaul

Notifications have improved in iOS, however they’re nonetheless a little bit of a large number. If you dig into the Settings app to alter how apps notify you, you’re bombarded with choices. The place do you get alerts? What sort of banner fashion? Would you like sounds? Previews? How concerning the little crimson dot on app icons?

ios notifications settings Apple

All these choices, which most customers by no means contact, and nonetheless no option to differentiate vital notifications from all the remainder.

The typical consumer doesn’t ever go right here, and is left on the mercy of default settings for all their apps. Those that do change issues have too many choices to select from, they usually’re the fallacious form of choices. I’d prefer to see Apple cut back the alternatives for the numerous methods wherein notifications are displayed, and as an alternative work on a systemic technique of separating notifications into two teams: vital alerts that require speedy motion and informal stuff that may wait.

What the notification system on the iPhone actually wants is to acknowledge that notifications are often abused by builders and are a significant purpose why all of us use our telephones an excessive amount of. Apple ought to take the identical systemic strategy to decreasing notification affect in iOS 14 because it did with location monitoring in iOS 13. Make notifications silent and non-interrupting by default (no banners, no lock display screen pop-up, they simply seem within the notification shade). Let apps outline particular “excessive precedence” notifications, and need to request that customers allow them, whereas telling customers precisely what’s going to produce them.

For instance, Twitter’s notifications for likes, retweets, and follows would silently ship to Notification Middle, however the app would immediate you to permit direct messages to be “excessive precedence” the place they’d produce alerts and sounds. The Ring app would have silent notifications for detected movement, however might request permitting excessive precedence notifications for when your doorbell is rung.

And let’s do away with notification badges solely. The little crimson dot on app icons is ineffective vestige of an previous cell world. It has excessive visible affect however low data density—all it may possibly do is present a quantity, which might imply something relying on the app. Worse, it doesn’t let you know if any actions are wanted or what they need to be. Their existence owes extra to inertia than to really enhancing our telephone expertise.

All the time-on show with issues

The Apple Watch has an always-on show. OLED Android telephones have had always-on shows for years. There’s no purpose why the OLED iPhone fashions can’t have them as effectively.

An always-on “sleep” display screen for the iPhone must be just like the lock display screen, with a number of changes. It ought to show time, date, and battery life on a black background (to save lots of battery life), however no notifications. Maybe new notifications might briefly seem and go away, however we want fewer causes to select up our telephone, not extra.

pixel 2 xl always on display Adam Patrick Murray/IDG

And always-on show and issues. In the event that they’re adequate Android, and adequate for Apple Watch, they’re adequate for iPhone.

To that finish, I’d like to see Apple take the concept of issues from the Apple Watch and add them to the lock display screen and always-on sleep display screen. Maybe 4 of them, flanking the clock, with standardized codecs. Builders might produce issues for his or her apps and what they’d show, and customers might select which 4 they need to see.

This might be an effective way to get easy data with out selecting up our telephones and diving into apps. A few of what we want we might get with out even unlocking our telephones. It will make the iPhone much more helpful, even when at relaxation, whereas offering an essential function to advertise digital well being and wellbeing.

Name recording

I do know recording telephone calls is a little bit of a tough authorized concern, but it surely’s simply so helpful that I need Apple to at the very least try to sort out it. The disclosure that one must make to legally file a telephone name varies from nation to nation and state to state, however evidently probably the most stringent requirement is for each events to be told {that a} recording is going on, and that requirement can often be met by taking part in an everyday audible tone (like a “beep” each 15 seconds).

Ideally, when one allows name recording we might merely hear “name recording enabled” adopted by common unobtrusive beeps, neither of which might really be captured as a part of the recording. Recordings can go into Voice Memos the place they’d be designated with a telephone icon, and could possibly be auto-transcribed (see improved dictation, above).

Completely combine Shazam

Apple purchased Shazam in 2018 however hasn’t carried out a complete lot with it apart from take away advertisements. Technically, you’re utilizing Shazam expertise while you ask Siri to determine a tune, however Apple might go so much additional.

First, construct Shazam proper into Apple Music. Make an easy-to-hit “determine this tune” button each within the iPhone/iPad and Apple Watch interface. Preserve a customized default playlist for recognized songs that makes a observe of the date, time, and (optionally) location.

And steal a web page from Google’s Pixel telephones and allow on-device, fixed tune identification. It will be an opt-in possibility, in fact, however when enabled would present a small bar with the at present taking part in tune on the lock display screen and notification shade. Faucet it to hop on to that tune in Apple Music.

Let customers change app defaults

It’s past time to permit customers to decide on their default apps for sure actions. After I faucet on an tackle, I ought to be capable of hop proper into Google Maps or Waze if I need to, reasonably than Apple Maps. Hyperlinks ought to be capable of open within the browser of my alternative, not simply Safari (all of them have to make use of Safari’s web page rendering, anyway!).

You are able to do this on a Mac…what’s Apple afraid of? Apple already has the benefit of its apps being pre-installed and the default alternative, however permitting customers to enter settings and alter the defaults apps for sure sorts of actions would go an extended option to satisfying energy customers (and stemming cries that Apple is an abusive monopoly).

In iOS 14, Apple might begin small, with music, podcasts, and maps, and develop assist for default apps from there. And naturally, these defaults would lengthen to Siri, so if I modify my default music app to Spotify, asking Siri to easily play a given tune would open it in Spotify, with out having to designate that specific service.

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