It’s almost here… iOS8!

Brian Town Blogging

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About this time last year, the Apple world was anxiously awaiting the release of iOS7 – the most dramatic change yet in iOS software from Apple. People spent hours trying to get themselves in the queue to update their iPhones and even longer waiting for the new update to complete installation. With huge changes in layout, appearance and functionality, iOS7 changed the game. It became easier to sync your iPhone and your Mac with the release of OSX Mavericks. Now, tomorrow (finally!), iOS8 will be released.

Apple is saying that this update is “the biggest iOS release ever” (isn’t the newest update always the “best one yet”?) with “big updates to apps” and “exciting new connections between apps and between devices”.

One of the main points that Apple is promoting is the updated Photos app, giving everyone the ability to “make every shot look even better immediately after you’ve taken it with powerful new editing tools, no matter your skill level”. This sounds great – and it really is – but this just goes to show just how easy it is (and continues to get) for everyone to basically Photoshop a picture, without ever actually opening (or even learning how to use) Photoshop.

In today’s world of smartphones, we are constantly seeing more and more truth in the fact that a lot of people really are relying more on their phones in every aspect of daily life – from searching directions in the palm of your hand instead of opening an actual map, to texting everything instead of making a quick phone call, to emailing instead of having actual meetings. Depending on which way we look at this, it can either be a good thing or a bad thing – we can choose to either use these tools that our phones give us to help us out and make our lives easier, or we can get lost in them completely and forget to look up and watch where we’re walking… It’s all about finding a good balance.

The reason I bring up the effect that smartphones have on us and our lives is because I see a lot more of this in the details of iOS8. For example, while it is obviously no substitute for actually, psychically, making a trip to your doctor’s office, the new Health app allows you to do things like automatically share your blood pressure with your doctor from an app. I mentioned texting in place of phone calls – the new Messages app lets you “add your voice to the conversation”. If you’re able to send quick, verbal messages to whoever you’re talking to right from a text message, now, more than ever, what need (if any) is left to pick up the phone, other than having an actual desire to have a real conversation with someone?

Just as a side note – iOS8 will allow users to remove themselves from group messages! This may not sound like a big deal, but it really is… How many times have you been in a group message that you’re no longer actually involved in, but keep getting notifications on notifications? That all ends with iOS8!

All in all, I for one am SO excited for the release of iOS8 tomorrow! There are so many cool updates and new things coming with it and I can’t wait to start using it. The things our iPhones can do for us are amazing – way more, I’m sure, than what people even 10 years ago would have ever thought a phone would have been capable of. While this new software, even more so than iOS7, has the ability to replace so many things in our daily lives and make it that much easier to talk to our friends without actually being with them, it’s always important to remember to “Look Up”…

~ Alli

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