WWDC 2014: Apple unveils iOS 8 with HealthKit, HomeKit and more
At the Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, in addition to the new OS X Yosemite for Macs, the company previewed the iOS 8 for mobile devices, complete with its new features and enhancements.
iOS 8 is built upon iOS 7, which was a major revamp of the mobile operating system and was introduced at last year's WWDC.
As per Apple CEO Tim Cook, the company had already sold over 500 million iPhones, 200 million iPads and 100 million iPod touches, with over 130 million people buying their first Apple device in the past year. The iOS 8, which Cook termed was a "giant release," seems to have retained the environment of the iOS 7, with most of the changes coming in new features and enhancements.
There are new interactive additions in the notifications center of the iOS 8, allowing users to make direct actions such as replying to messages, among other things.
The Messaging app, which is recognized by Apple as the most used in-house app, also received some enhancements. The software for the predictive keyboard also received an upgrade, named QuickType, which will be able to learn the user's language habits to guess what the user is writing. Users can now also record and send video and audio messages through Messaging. Other improvements include location sharing and conversation muting.
iOS 8 also introduced the family sharing feature, where up to six family members automatically share content such as photos and calendars to each other. Parents will be notified if a child wants to purchase an app, pending their approval. If a family member purchases content on iTunes, the other members of the family can download the same content for free, as long as a single card is used between all members.
The HealthKit and HomeKit are also introduced in the iOS 8. The HealthKit compiles all the data that the mobile device gathers through different health-focused apps, creating a complete health profile of the user. The HomeKit, on the other hand, compiles all the apps that control home-related devices, turning your iPhone into a remote control for your home.
There are many other improvements and enhancements for the iOS 8, with nothing being finalized until the operating system is released to the public in the fall.
iOS 8 is now available to developers. The operating system will have compatibility with iPhone 4s, 5, 5c and 5s. Users of the iPad 2, iPad with Retina display, iPad Air and iPad Mini will also be able to upgrade to iOS 8.
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