Apple has just announced iOS 8, coming this Fall for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

It’s a massive upgrade over iOS 7 with a multitude of new features that include a vastly updated Photos app, additions to the Mail app, a new Healthkit app and more. Lets go over them…

Healthkit:

There are many devices on the market that track your health and fitness. Nike Fuelband and Fitbit Flex immediately come to mind. The new Healthkit app in iOS 8 will act as a hub for all these devices, enabling users to monitor their health and vital statistics from one place. It means you can see your pulse, number of calories burned, sleep patterns, weight blood pressure and more from a single app. You’ll also be able to retroactively see data, helping you to track weight over time and more.

New Photos app:

The new Photos app in iOS 8 will let you access any photo ever taken on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or Mac. You’ll be able to access these images from iCloud, with the first 5GB storage remaining free. Apple will have various prices and ties, including 20GB for 99 cents per month or 200GB for $3.99 per month.

Editing photos has just become easier with iOS 8. First of all, the editing tools have been vastly improved, so you can now tweak the lighting and colour parameters, or carefully rotate an image and it’ll sync across all of your devices. There’s also a new Photos app coming for the Mac in 2015 that will sync better with iCloud and include the same editing tools.

iCloud Drive:

iCloud Drive is a shortcut to all your documents in the drive. Apps an access and save files to the Drive, and you can browse the documents from either an iOS device or Mac.

Messages app:

A suite of new features has been announced for the Messages app. First of all, you can now opt in and out of group chats. You can also enable Do Not Disturb for those times when everyone else won’t shut up. Second, you can now touch and hold the microphone to instant add a voice message to a chat. Third, the Messages app makes it easier to take and attach photos and video. Finally, you can now see every attachment in a conversion from a Details panel, meaning you won’t have to scrub and scrub through the timeline to find a particular image.

Family Sharing:

This new feature enables up to six family members to share photos, calendar events, reminders and iTunes/App Store purchases. What’s more, when a child wants to buy an app or song a message will automatically be sent to the credit card owner (presumably a parent) who has the option to confirm the purchase. As a result, Apple has now solved the problem of children spending too much money on apps with Family Sharing.

Smart Keyboard:

iOS 8 now predicts what you’re going to type next, then offers words above the keyboard that you can tap on to enter into the message. That’s not all. iOS 8 will learn how you talk to people, and customise the suggestions for each recipient. So if you’re talking to your boss suggested words might appear formal, whereas when writing to your best friend they’ll be jovial and light hearted. Additionally, iOS 8 enables you to install third-party keyboards.

Widgets:

You can now add app widgets to the Notification Center. This means that while viewing Notification Center you’ll now be able to bid of items in eBay, reply to messages or see sports results. This might be the closest we ever get to having full widgets in iOS.

Touch ID:

Third-party apps can now take advantage of Touch ID on the iPhone 5s. All data still stays within the fingerprint sensor, but now apps will be able to get a yes or no message from Touch ID.

Siri:

You can now talk to Siri without touching your phone. Just say “Hey Siri” and your phone will begin listening to your voice.
Siri now identifies songs that are playing, and gives you the option to purchase and download the song from the iTunes Store.
Siri will now stream text recognition while you talk, making it faster than ever to compose a message or note.
22 new dictation languages have been added to Siri.

Homekit:

Apple is now making an entry into devices within your home, which means your iPhone or iPad will be able to talk to locks, lights, doors, cameras, thermostats, plugs and switches. With iOS 8 you’ll be able to unlock the door, turn off lights, or even group devices together, so at the end of the day you’ll be able to turn off lights, heating and more with just a tap of your finger. Apple is going to run a certification program for Homekit, ensuring developers support these new features and iOS 8.

 

Compatibility:

iOS 8 will be compatible with the following devices:

iPhone:

iPhone 4s | iPhone 5 |iPhone 5c |iPhone 5s +

iPad:

iPad 2 | iPad withRetina display | iPad Air |iPad mini |iPad mini with Retina display

iPod touch:

iPod touch 5th generation

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