iOS Overview Updated February 21, 2020

iOS

The world’s most advanced mobile operating system

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4,501 'iOS' stories

August 2010 - February 2020


iOS is Apple’s mobile operating system that runs on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Historically, Apple releases a new iOS version once a year, the current version is iOS 13.

In 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone and iPhone OS. During the event, Jobs referred to the operating system as OS X because it shared a similar Unix core compared to the Mac. When Apple launched the iPhone SDK a year later, they officially changed the name to iPhone OS.

In the summer of 2008, Apple added the App Store to iPhone OS with version 2.0, and this set the stage for the “app economy” that we still enjoy to this day.

Version 3.0 was released in 2009, and it included copy/paste, MMS support, Spotlight, mobile tethering, and push notifications for 3rd party apps.

In version 4, Apple finally renamed iPhone OS to iOS (with the iPad sharing the same software). The major features were multitasking and FaceTime.

iOS 5.0 introduced Notification Center, iMessage, Siri, and iCloud.

iOS 6.0 removes Google Maps in favor of Apple Maps and added the Passbook app (now known as Wallet).

Version 7.0 brought a dramatic redesign of iOS with a new font, flatter icons, a and new Photos app. The redesign was led by Jony Ive.

Version iOS 8.0, Apple finally allowed third-party keyboards and the ability to share files from different apps.

Version 9.0 included Apple Maps, an overhauled Notes app, and multitasking for iPad.

Version 10.0 included an SDK for Siri, Maps, and iMessages.

Version 11.0 included a new iPad Dock, Customizable Control center, drag and drop on iPad, and the Files app with third-party integration.

Version 12.0 added Screen Time features for managing your time on devices, the Shortcuts app, ARKit 2.0, and Memoji.

iOS 13 added Dark Mode, swipe-style typing, a redesigned share sheet, made app downloads 50% smaller, 2x faster app launch speed, Memoji Stickers and Memoji Makeup, HomeKit-enabled routers and HomeKit Secure Video, a new “Sign in with Apple” option for logging into third-party services, all-new Apple Maps, and much more.

Compatible Devices with iOS 13

  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro
  • iPhone 11 Pro Max
  • iPhone XS
  • iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone X
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone SE
  • iPod touch (7th generation)

iOS Stories Today

Largest public iOS developer survey highlights Swift’s progress, interest for each of Apple’s platforms, more

The largest public iOS developer community survey wrapped up last month and the results are now live. Among the findings, the survey of over 2,000 Apple devs highlights how Swift is doing, how much interest there for each of Apple’s platforms, what revenue models are most popular, and much more.

iOS Stories February 20

Peloton for iPhone and iPad adds Chromecast support for big screen workouts

The Peloton app for iOS has been updated today with support for Chromecast. This adds another way for Peloton users to view workouts on the big screen.

Microsoft launched a preview of its Defender antivirus software for Mac last spring and now the company is preparing to bring the app to iOS and Android something this year. For the mobile versions, it’s unclear exactly how it will work or what features will be available, but the antivirus software for iOS and Android could be more focused on preventing phishing.

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Bloomberg report says Apple is considering allowing iPhone and iPad users to choose third-party default iOS apps for things like email and web-browsing.

Currently, you can use third-party apps, of course, but as we explained earlier, you can’t set them as the defaults.

It is not possible for the user to tell iOS that it prefers the third-party browser over Safari; any tapped links will open in Safari every single time. Similarly, there are many competing email apps in the App Store but shortcuts to composing a new email will only ever show the system Mail compose sheet …

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iOS Stories February 18

Launch Center Pro utility adds new Icon Composer customization for Shortcuts and more

Launch Center Pro has become a powerful utility that allows users to create simple shortcuts that speed up everyday tasks. Last year, the app added an all-new Icon Composer for Home screen customization, and an update today takes that feature to the next level.

iOS software engineer says Apple service promos mean ‘iOS is adware’

One of Tumblr’s software engineers has said that Apple’s promotions for its own services are so pervasive that “iOS is adware”…

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