Upgrade day – initial feelings

Yesterday, Apple released iOS version 11. Having both an iPhone 6 and an (older) iPad, I began my process of upgrading. My phone was first, and the process took a while, but was pretty much seamless. My iPad, unfortunately, can’t take the iOS 11 upgrade, so I’ll just be talking about the phone.

First, I like the appearance changes. Control Center is pretty solid, and I like the increased size of all the items. Flashlight is now adjustable, instead of just on/off; the changes in the brightness and volume sliders to make them larger is something that has been needed for a long time. In fact, the larger sizes of all the buttons is great for me. The Lock Orientation button, which is a thing I personally like, is right on Cotrol Center and is much easier to tell what’s happening – when you’ve got it locked, it’s white and the lock icon on the white button is red; when it’s not, it’s grey and the log icon is white – much easier to tell at a glance. Do Not Disturb does a similar things, but the icon turns purple instead.

The four buttons at the bottom also have special items if you hold them down. Flashlight, as mentioned above, gives you the ability to set the brightness. Timer lets you set the countdown from one minute to two hours, in increments, just by holding down. Calculator’s only option is to copy the result of your last calculation, and Camera gives you the options of Take Selfie, Record Video, Record Slo-Mo and simple Take Photo. That’s pretty helpful. You still need to open the app itself for more options, but I expect those are the most used options for the items.

Moving to one of my personally most used apps, we have Mail. It now looks more like the Music app – there’s a larger header at the top of each account. It also gives the search bar by default, instead of having to pull down for it.

Speaking of Music, it doesn’t appear to have changed that much in terms of actually Doing Stuff. There’s new social options, but to be honest, I don’t think the entire world needs to know that I have Barry Manilow’s Greatest Hits on a playlist and sometimes, walking, like to listen to “Monochrome Trouble”, the ending song to the anime series Bastard!!. Except I just blogged about it, so you know. But it’s not shared through Apple Music, is what I’m saying. Oh, they moved Shuffle to an easier to find and work with place, so that’s a positive.

The Files app looks like it could be interesting. I haven’t really done much with it, but I do like that you can add Google Drive as a source, and if you need access to those files you need one less app to do so (the Google Drive app isn’t the most elegant, to be honest).

I suppose once I’m employed I’ll need a new iPad, but until then so be it. If you’ll excuse me now, I just opened the App Store and saw how many apps need an update. I may be a while.

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