iOS Overview Updated August 11, 2022


The world’s most advanced mobile operating system

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4,693 'iOS' stories

August 2010 - August 2022

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 August 11

Weather Strip for iOS gets air quality forecasts to keep an eye on smoke, smog, and ozone

Weather Strip, the unique weather app for iPhone and iPad is out with an update today that delivers detailed air quality data and forecasts, more detailed views for temperature, and wind, and more.

iOS Stories August 9

Google starts ‘Get The Message’ campaign to pressure Apple into RCS on the iPhone

For the past year, Google has been increasingly calling out Apple for not adopting RCS (Rich Communication Services) on the iPhone. Meant to replace SMS/MMS, it has a number of technical advancements that would improve the messaging experience between Android and iOS users. Google is now launching a “Get The Message” pressure campaign in hopes that Apple will change its mind on RCS.

iOS Stories July 29

Over the last year, I’ve jumped deep into the world of credit card rewards, maximizing redemption values, collection points and cash back, and taking advantage of lucrative welcome bonuses. One of the apps that I’ve used to learn more about all of this is CardPointers, an excellent app from the indie developer Emmanuel Crouvisier.

I got a chance to talk to Crouvisier about CardPointers, iOS 16, what it’s’ like being a full-time indie developer in 2022, and much more. Plus, an exclusive discount and offer for 9to5Mac readers.

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iOS Stories July 11

YouTube is finally widely rolling out Picture-in-Picture for iPhone and iPad

YouTube announced last June that Picture-in-Picture (PiP) was coming to its iPhone and iPad apps, and wide availability is now just a few days away for Premium subscribers globally and free users in the United States.

iOS Stories July 7

BeReal – a social media app that launched in 2020 – is quickly gaining popularity among users and generations. Touting an opportunity for people to “be real,” I downloaded the app to see if it was worth the hype, and, spoiler – it isn’t.

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iOS Stories June 24

Apple on Friday began rolling out a refreshed interface for the Subscriptions menu on the iPhone and iPad. The new design not only follows the latest interface guidelines for iOS, but also makes it easier to understand which subscriptions are currently active and inactive.

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iOS Stories June 23

Chrome for iPhone gets menu redesign, Enhanced Safe Browsing, and more

Version 103 of Chrome is rolling out this week, and Google is highlighting several new features on iPhone and iPad that span usability and security.

iOS Stories June 18

Google uses Drake’s ‘Texts Go Green’ to pressure Apple to adopt RCS on the iPhone [Video]

In recent months, Google has been publicly pressuring Apple to adopt RCS on the iPhone, and its latest volley involves an “unofficial lyric explainer video” for “Texts Go Green” from Drake’s new album.

iOS Stories June 10

‘Alto’s Odyssey’ studio launching ‘Lucky Luna’ platformer for iOS on Netflix Games

Following up on its range of hits like Alto’s Adventure, Alto’s Odyssey, Where Cards Fall, and more, award-winning developer Snowman is set to bring its next all-new game, Lucky Luna to iOS and Android this summer through Netflix Games.

iOS Stories June 8

Apple has put a renewed emphasis on HomeKit this year with iOS 16, bringing a completely redesigned Home app ahead of the looming Matter standard launch. One key aspect of HomeKit is having a home hub, which allows for features like out-of-home control, automations, and more.

Apple has traditionally allowed HomePod, Apple TV, and iPad devices to serve as home hubs. With the release of iOS and iPadOS 16 this year, however, iPads will no longer be supported as home hubs.

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iOS Stories June 7

iOS 16 appears to open the door for Chromecast targets in the AirPlay menu

Apple’s ecosystem is famously fairly locked down, but things have improved a lot over the past few years. With the upcoming release of iOS 16, Apple appears to be working towards better support for Chromecast and other casting standards in apps.

iOS Stories June 1

Google TV app is now available on iOS, replaces Play Movies & TV

Almost two years after it hit Android, the Google TV app is finally coming to iOS for iPhone and iPad users.

iOS Stories May 26

In 19 pages of comments for a federal agency’s report on the app ecosystem, Meta is once again slamming Apple’s overwhelming market power. These comments are to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) in a report on competition in the mobile app ecosystem. This report is part of the Biden Administration’s effort to crack down on tech giants’ power.

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iOS Stories May 20

Apple Support scam cons woman out of $1500, here’s how to identify fakes

The next time you look for help with one of your devices, beware of Apple Support scams. With multiple tech support scams out there, bad actors are looking to take your money. One Denver woman found out the hard way after seeking help with her new iPhone 13.

iOS Stories May 16

Apple last year launched the new Communication Safety in Messages feature to protect children from viewing or sharing nude content. It was initially only available in the United States, but Apple has now expanded the feature to more countries with iOS 15.5.

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Lumen metabolic analyzer iOS app gets overhauled food logging and macro tracking

Lumen, the pocket-sized device that measures your metabolism to help you achieve health and fitness goals is out with a nice update. The iOS-supported device with Apple Health integration has received a refresh for its built-in food log and macro tracker that lets you see the impact your nutrition has on metabolism in real-time.

Apple has released iOS 15.5, macOS 12.4, and more today with updates like new features for Apple Cash, the Podcasts app, and the Studio Display webcam fix. However, a bigger reason to update your devices is the security patches with today’s releases. iOS 15.5 includes almost 30 security fixes while macOS 12.4 features over 50.

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iOS Stories May 11

It’s been a long road for EA to bring its battle royale hit to mobile devices but there is officially an Apex Legends iOS release date (Android too). Arriving around the world, the free-to-play mobile version will launch on May 17. Check out the Apex Legends Mobile Season 1 trailer and more below.

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iOS Stories May 10

It’s been nearly 15 years since the first iPhone was launched and almost as long since the creation of Apple’s App Store. In that time, millions of apps have found their way onto Apple devices – each with its own distinctive icon. As a relatively new form of art, The iOS App Icon Book is unlike most other art books you will come across.

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iOS Stories May 2

Here’s where to download Apple’s official iPhone manuals for free

Whether you’re new to iPhone, want to help friends or family, or just want to check out the official docs, here’s where to download the official iPhone manual for free.

iOS Stories April 28

Good Sodoku developers Zach Gage and Jack Schlesinger are back again today with the launch of a creative new game for iOS, Mac, Android, and PC. Knotwords is a minimal and elegant logic puzzle that offers a familiar yet novel experience.

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iOS Stories April 27

Technology use in education has come a long way in recent years, and it’s really helped my workflow. If you told me ten years ago that I’d be checking my email on my watch or asking my phone the square root of four, I wouldn’t believe you.

Last week, I mentioned my top five favorite apps that I use frequently as a student. This week, let me share with you my favorite features I use across my iPhone 12 and Apple Watch SE that help me with my university work.

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Apple doesn’t offer truly individualized customization of its products or interfaces to its users, and if anyone wants to customize the look of their Apple products – specifically their home screens – they’re in for A Time. With iOS 16 coming in September, there’s an opportunity for Apple to give consumers needed autonomy.

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iOS Stories April 21

Android is unsurprisingly the most popular mobile operating system in the world, as it’s available on a huge variety of devices. However, data from StockApps shows that iOS has been taking Android’s market share in recent years – although Google’s platform still dominates the market.

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