iOS 17 not only fixes bugs but also brings interesting new features. Apple presented iOS 17 during the keynote at WWDC 2023 on Monday evening. While the big bang of big, new functions didn’t materialize as expected, the next major iPhone update still brings a few interesting goodies that make the update worthwhile. Here are the five best features of iOS 17:
Mailbox Live Transcription
When you receive a call and put it into voicemail, you don’t have to wait for the message to finish speaking before you can listen to or view it. Instead, a live transcript can be displayed on your iPhone’s lock screen in the future, allowing you to choose to take the call anyway.
Apple’s autocorrect has long been a thorn in our side. With iOS 17, Apple changes the machine learning model to a “Transformer” model (ChatGPT is also a Transformer model), which should be significantly more accurate. There are also improvements to the user interface: the system now learns commonly used terms, shows in-line text suggestions as you type, and lets you complete entire sentences, and if you tap a corrected word, you can undo the correction with just one tap.
In iOS 17, you can design your contact poster that your (iPhone) contacts will see when you call them. The customization is similar to the lock screen: you choose an image, a font, styles and much more to give your (digital) contact more personality. Your customized contact card will also appear in the Contacts app. Many third-party VoIP apps support this function since the system is integrated into the call kit framework.
Easier Airdrop And Namedrop
With the new Airdrop function, Apple cuts a slice of Android. Samsung smartphones could hold two devices together and transfer information for several years, and three years ago, Android introduced the “Nearby Drop” feature system-wide. With iOS 17, you can hold two iPhones (or Apple Watches) together and share contact information, photos, and files via Airdrop.
When you charge your iPhone and orient it horizontally, the screen goes into the new standby mode and displays a large clock you can see from a great distance. Swipe up to change the clock style. Swipe left for a slideshow of your best photos. The real benefit, however, comes from the widget support, including smart stacks and live activities. You can view your home controls, a calendar, the weather, or even when the pizza delivery guy arrives (if you have a compatible app).
Because they’re smart stacks, they remember when and where you want to see which widget and try to display relevant information. However, you can always switch between the individual widgets. The feature doesn’t require a Magsafe charging stand, but if you use one, your iPhone will remember which stand you’re using for charging and adjust the display accordingly. iOS 17 brings more innovations that fall into this category, but most of these will only work on newer models, iPhone 12 and newer:
- Facetime reactions such as confetti, fireworks or balloons: From iOS 17, it will be possible to add effects similar to those used in iMessage for years in Facetime calls. These effects can even be recognized by a gesture and fade in automatically. This feature will be available on iPhone 12 and newer.
- Clever auto-correction: Many people complain about auto-correction on the iPhone and Mac, as the machine sometimes suggests the most inappropriate words. Now Apple has promised improvement: Autocorrect will improve from autumn but with major limitations. Initially, the feature comes only for selected languages such as English, French, German and Spanish. This also requires the iPhone 12 and newer.
- Automatic word and sentence completion: OK, there was a hint of generative AI at WWDC after all: iOS 17 can complete words or even sentences by tapping the spacebar from autumn. However, this function is initially only limited to English and iPhone 12 and newer.
- Point and Speak is a new feature for visually impaired people – they can point the iPhone camera in a certain direction, tap the screen, and the system will read out what is currently on the screen and, therefore, in front of the camera. This feature is only available for the Pro models from iPhone 12.
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