New iOS Update ups Apple’s game

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Talia Sinclair, Staff Writer

On Sept. 16, many iPhone users woke up to a new update on their phones.  What the users did not know is that the update would change the way they are able to organize and use their phone.  The most exciting new feature is that you can now further customize your home screen by adding new app widgets. 

Some examples of this are being able to see the steps you took that day, your schedule on a calendar, and your pictures, among some other options.  You can choose the size of these widgets and where you would like to place them. 

“I think that widgets are a great addition to the iPhone home screen.  Widgets can tell someone the time, the date, or even what is going on in the stock market without going into an app.  Convenience is becoming a key factor in new updates,” said sophomore Bryson Shaub. 

If you are someone who wants to make your screen more visually appealing, then there are some great apps for you to use.  Widgetsmith and Color Widgets allow you to change the color of some of the backgrounds of your widgets to make them more aesthetically pleasing.  Additionally, if you are someone who likes to play quick games, there is an app you can download called  the Steve-Widget Game.  This widget mimics the game you play when your WiFi shuts down on your computer.

“People who enjoy visually appealing screens will be fond of apps such as Widgetsmith.  Although there are several glitches with the new Home Screen, it is still a great addition to the iPhone.  The positives significantly outweigh the negatives,” said Shaub.

Not only does the update live on your home screen, but it also affects the utility of different apps.  For example, when Facetiming people now, you are able to leave the app and do other things on your phone while still seeing the person you are talking to.  If you prefer not to see them, you can swipe to the left so you can only hear them.  In collaboration with this update, streaming services, such as Amazon Prime Video and Netflix, will now let you minimize the video so you can do other things while watching your favorite shows or movies.

“The new iPhone updates are really interesting and it makes using some of my favorite apps and features a breeze,” said sophomore Montana Moon. 

Another exciting new feature included in the update is the changes made to Siri.  Now when you say “Hey Siri,” an icon will pop up at the bottom of your screen so you are able to carry on viewing what you were looking at without the page being consumed by Siri.  A similar update was made on the phone app.  You can now accept calls and talk to people without having to leave whatever you are looking at.  When you receive a call, you get a notification-sized image letting you know you are being called.

“I especially like how I can talk to my friends and Siri without having to abandon whatever I am looking at.  It makes multitasking so much easier,” said Moon.

This new update has made the iPhone experience more customizable and interactive.  An excellent example of this is the new options for your Memoji.  You can also have fun with your friends with the update by pinning up to nine of your favorite group chats and you can add images for them.  Additionally, in your settings, you can turn on the function that allows you to tap the back of your phone to do your most-used tasks, such as turning off your phone and returning to the home screen. 

“Apple announced new updates to group chats.  Plus, Apple’s avatars, called Memoji, have more hairstyles, age options, and face masks, for the pandemic era,” said Kaya Yurieff, in a recent CNN Business article.

The latest Apple update is definitely exciting and different from any other update.  Its “hype” is well deserved because it allows Apple users to enjoy a more customizable and personalized iPhone experience.