Siri, the App Store, the Apple Maps crisis? The story of Apple's iOS platform is filled with technological breakthroughs, and moments of high-tech drama. With iOS 8 looming just below the horizon like a big software sun, Adventures in Tech takes a look at iOS' most interesting moments to date. Hit play now.
Apple's most significant feat with iOS was crafting a decent touch-only operating system, at a time when smartphones were hampered by the presence of physical buttons. Today we take the gestures and interface that iOS introduced for granted, but at the time it was both mind-blowing and controversial.
Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod touch software hasn't been an unhindered string of victories, however. The rapid progress of Android has given Apple plenty to think about, while the disastrous Apple Maps update in 2012 resulted in an apology from CEO Tim Cook, and damaged Apple's reputation as a software maker.
iOS 7 "a safe move"
iOS 7 has given Apple's software a fresh lick of paint, but -- as our latest episode explains -- does little to change the basic structure of iOS, which has remained virtually untouched since its introduction in 2007.
"For users it ended up being an evolutionary step and a very easy progression from the previous version," Ben Wood of CCS Insight told CNET. "The user interface and design paradigm essentially remained the same -- just a fresher look and feel with a few new elements. On this basis I'd say it was a relatively safe move driven more by Apple's internal design direction than external pressure."
"iOS 8 is going to be a very different challenge to iOS 7," Wood said. "Apple needs to find a trade-off between keeping existing and loyal users happy -- most of whom are are now completely familiar with the user interface -- as well as addressing the competitive challenge from rival operating systems such as Android that support interactive home screens featuring widgets (Android) or live tiles (Microsoft Windows Phone)."
Should we expect anything revolutionary from iOS 8, then? Or should we anticipate another modest upgrade, with a sprinkling of tweaks and new apps? Press play now, and let me know your thoughts in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.
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