The history of iOS updates and what to expect in iOS 12

Apple users always get excited when an update to the manufacturer’s operating system is announced, and looking back at all the features that came with each iOS update, it’s easy to see why.

The final version of Apple’s iOS 1 was released in 2008, and ten years on, the tech giant’s operating system has seen significant and continuous improvement. This trend looks to carry on with iOS 12, which is set to release in the next few months.

Let’s take a look back at all the coolest features of each iOS update, before delving into what you can look forward to in iOS 12.

iOS 1

Year of release: 2007
Most significant feature: The integration of iTunes with the iPhone.

iOS 2

Year of release: 2008
Most significant feature: The App Store was introduced in iOS 2, together with support for third-party apps.

iOS 3

Year of release: 2009
Most significant feature: The ability of the Camera app to also record videos.

iOS 4

Year of release: 2010
Most significant feature: iOS 4 was the first update to be referred to as such – prior to this, the versions of the updates were referred to as iPhone OS 1, 2 and 3. Significant improvements in this update included the introduction of FaceTime, and the ability to organise your apps in folders.

iOS 5

Year of release: 2011
Most significant feature: As wireless technology gained ground, Apple introduced iCloud, a novel way of saving files and content on the internet.

iOS 6

Year of release: 2012
Most significant feature: Siri, the virtual assistant that laid the foundations for the development of similar technologies by Apple’s competitors, was first introduced in iOS 6.

iOS 7

Year of release: 2013
Most significant feature: In iOS 7, cosmetic changes were the most significant, as Apple unveiled a new and more modern user interface.

iOS 8

Year of release: 2014
Most significant feature: Apple introduces Apple Pay and the Apple Music subscription service.

iOS 9

Year of release: 2015
Most significant feature: iOS 9 focused less on new features and interface changes, and more on stability, performance, speed and responsiveness, but also introduced Night Shift and Low Power Mode in this update.

iOS 10

Year of release: 2016
Most significant feature: The ability to delete built-in apps became available in iOS 10. This addition had long been sought by users.

iOS 11

Year of release: 2017
Most significant feature: In iOS 11, Apple introduced the ability to set up a new iPhone by simply holding an older device close to your new device to securely import all your settings.

iOS 12

At this year’s Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, the company announced some of the updates included in iOS 12, which should be released in the next few months. These include Screen Time, a new feature that aims to track your iPhone usage to help you curb it by setting usage limits. This comes after calls by stakeholders to provide parents with a way to monitor and control their children’s smartphone usage.

Another update is the introduction of Memoji, a feature which allows you to completely customise and personalise an emoji based on your own appearance. This feature requires Apple’s TrueDepth camera, and is only available for the iPhone X.

In iOS 12, FaceTime has been upgraded to support up to 32 people on a call. To ensure that users don’t get too confused with all the faces on their screens, FaceTime will automatically detect who’s talking and enlarge the person’s screen when they do.

Apple also announced improvements to their augmented reality offering, and is introducing a new file type specifically for this purpose, which will allow users to send messages of 3D objects to their friends, which can then be placed in the real world with their camera.

Keep an eye on Smartcom’s blog for release dates and more information on iOS 12.

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