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Best New Features on iOS 9

Posted October 20th, 2015


To say that Apple’s new iOS has a lot of new features would be an understatement. Some users may not even discover all the new features of iOS 9 before the release of the next one. So, at the expense of drowning you in the details, here are the changes that every iPhone user should know.


We Can Rebuild Her. We Have the Technology.

Siri has a new look and is now better than ever. Apple’s mild tempered virtual assistant is said to be 40% faster and more accurate than last year’s version. The user interface is also sleeker and has a futuristic feel.

Apple iOS 9 Siri

Source: Dailytech.com

You can now use her to search for certain photos taken or uploaded to your phone. For example, tell Siri to “Show me the photos I took in Paris” or “Show me the photos I took last week” and she will.

If you’re in the middle of a task, such as writing an email or searching for a new restaurant to try, and are interrupted, tell Siri to “Remind me about this later,” and she’ll make a note to do so. You can even tell Siri to remind you of something once you’ve reached a set location. This could be something like: “Remind me to ask Debra about the reports when I get to work” or “Remind me to call Sam when I get in the car.”

She’s much more responsive this time around and could have you talking to your new iPhone a lot more.


Better Searching

iOS 9 Spotlight Search

Source: idownloadblog.com

Now, if you’re one of those people who feels strange talking to your phone, iOS 9 offers other improved search functionality. You can now bring up Search by swiping to the right or down on the home screen.

Searching for contacts will also bring up important calendar dates and shortcut keys to message or call them right away. You’ll also see related searches from other apps like Notes, Apple Music, and Maps, when applicable. Essentially what you have is a smarter, more intuitive searching experience.


Keep up with the Headlines

Apple News

Source: recombu.com

Apple’s News app lets you know what’s happening in the world right from your home screen. It pulls articles from a wide range of publications and shows you stories based on your interests and viewing history. Of course, you have the ability to share articles to your contacts or other apps as well as save ones you want to read later.

The new feature does have some faults, however. The biggest being that there’s no real way to organize your reading experience. It’s more or less a flood of headlines. While the articles may all cater to your interests, there’s no way to categorize the stories by their topics.

This may be a minor inconvenience for those just wanting to quickly skim through the headlines. But for those who like to digest their news in an orderly fashion may find themselves turning to other apps or keeping with the ones they are already using.


Passbook Gets a Name Change

OS9 Wallet

Source: Apple

What was known as Passbook has been renamed Wallet. Here you can store all of your credit, debit, and loyalty cards, as well as your boarding passes and event tickets. The app works with Apple Pay and doesn’t even require you to open it when paying.

When you’re ready to pay, simply hold out your phone near the reader and put your finger on the Touch ID. Apple stresses that your card numbers are never stored on your device and are never sent to merchants. Instead, you are assigned a unique number for each purchase.

It’s kind of crazy to think that the days of pulling out a card and swiping it may soon be coming to an end. Card dipping will also be making its way to the US very soon.


Taking Notes

iOS9 notes app

Source: Apple

With other apps like Evernote and OneNote having greater functionality, Notes was long forgotten by many mobile users. Apple is trying to change that with some relatively sophisticated sketching and doodling tools, new formatting options, checklists, image tucking, and app sharing capabilities.

It probably won’t turn anyone away from what they’re already using to stay organized, but it’s nice to see that Apple is trying to stay current with their built-in apps.



apple transit maps iOS9

Source: Apple

Apple’s Maps is better this time around (still not great) and now shows you public transit routes. However, it still doesn’t show you entire transit lines. It likely won’t replace Google Maps, but it’s an improvement nonetheless.


Other Improvements

  • Split View and Slide Over allows for better multitasking on iPad.
  • Enable Low Power Mode to save battery life.
  • App switcher now shows you currently open apps as slightly narrower pages to shuffle through.
  • The suggestion bar on the keyboard has copy and paste shortcuts. You can also use it to add formatting and attachments.
  • iOS 9 only requires you to free up 1.3GB to install.
  • Wi-Fi Assist allows the phone to fall back to cellular data when Wi-Fi connections go bad.

For a visual of these changes and many others, check out the video below.

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