Tech Talk: iOS 7


The preivous iOS compared to the new iOS update.

iOS 7 vastly changes the home screen for the iPhone, iPod, and iPad.

As many students who own iPhones or other Apple devices should know, Apple has released a major update for its recent Apple products that are for the iPhone 4 version and up, the fifth generation of the iPod and up, and the second generation of the iPad and up. The features that Apple brings to the table in this behemoth of an update may seem quite astounding when compared to the others. This update has a plethora of new features, however, most of these features are purely cosmetic, and have no real effect on the way the mobile device functions.

In this update, users will have access to new features such as new icon colors, a different lock screen layout, and the option to change the gender of Siri, among many other features.  However, if you’re more interested by the features that better your device when it comes to functionality rather than the purely visual features of previous versions, then you may appreciate this update for what it offers.

 According to Apple, the update has a much better system for browsing, notifications from games, and ability to use social media. There will be a better system for turning on WI-FI, sharing photographs and videos, multitasking, creating slideshows, and keeping tabs on your passwords and credit card information. The camera’s editing capabilities will be greatly enhanced. This could’ve been due to a response from Apple about the complaints of the iPhone 4S’ camera and how underwhelming it was. Of course, an update will not magically shift around the hardware of your phone as if this was 2001: A Space Odyssey.  But to aid this lack of technology, Apple has released the new iPhone 5S with camera hardware that vastly outweighs that of the iPhone 4s.

Now, there’s a possible downside which could affect you greatly, and that is that an early version of almost any update will have some security flaws. When you install this update (which you probably already have) you need to keep in mind that there will be aspects of the update that won’t function properly, even though Apple has thrown millions of dollars towards research and development. It may sound unlikely, and I may just be paranoid, but the chance that Apple could make a mistake with the iOS update isn’t unheard of – actually, it has happened before. Back when the iOS 6 was first released, many users who had jailbroken their phones were having extreme difficulties  using their devices – which Apple had eventually fixed. On the topic of jailbreaking, it seems that the future of jailbreaking for iPhones will be slightly underwhelming for a while, as those who develop these programs that allow you to jailbreak your device need to modify their program according to Apple’s new code for this new iOS 7.

In case that you don’t know, “jailbreaking” is the term that is used when somebody installs a program that allows a high-level of customizability. This program isn’t released by Apple – it’s released by a third-party that wishes to break the restrictions on the phone ,almost as if those restrictions are like a jail, hence “jailbreaking”) If you were to install this kind of update onto your phone, it voids any existing warranty that you may have with Apple.

So, if you would like the opinion of somebody who thinks that he knows what he’s talking about, I would be glad to indulge. A lot of the new features are purely cosmetic – and a quick jailbreak allows for a fair amount of customizability and freedom (keep in mind that jailbreaking your device will not have the same aesthetic as the update will). These changes that are jailbroken features are removed once you either update your phone or revert your phone from an iCloud backup.  This is because an Apple device doesn’t recognize the files, so the device doesn’t know to save them. But, if you plan on jailbreaking your device for the full-effect that an iOS 6 jailbreak can bring, and you have downloaded the new update then, I can only suggest reverting back to the iOS 6. This is because jailbreaking the iOS 7 will not allow for as much customizability, until this is improved by a third-party. But on the topic of the official features, I would honestly let Apple smooth over any new security flaws that may arise and put my device at risk before I install the update. If you wish to, and  need assistance on downgrading your device, a simple Google search will suffice along with being cautious about what you do with your phone. All in all, I’m quite glad to see that Apple is attempting to get a firmer grasp on the smartphone market that they kick-started. I expect to see many more major updates such as this to be announced in the near future. However, If you plan on keeping this update, expect the possibility of some unforeseen issues.