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Apple announces new iOS 17 with 'NameDrop' feature, drops support for iPhone 8 and X

By ANI BUREAUS Published Jun 06, 2023 10:20 am

Apple unveiled its much-awaited iOS 17 at its 2023 Worldwide Developers Conference on Tuesday, June 6 (Philippine time).

The tech giant introduced a "NameDrop" feature in the mobile operating system that lets users share contact information easily "by simply bringing their iPhones together, or by bringing an iPhone and Apple Watch together." Aside from contacts, they can also "share content or start SharePlay to listen to music, watch a movie, or play a game while in close proximity between iPhone devices."

Other iOS 17 highlights include new safety features, a built-in journaling app, a new nightstand mode, redesigned contact cards, better auto-correct and voice transcription, and live voicemail. Users will also be able to drop the "hey" from "Hey Siri."

The contact book is getting an update with a new feature called "Contact Posters," which turns contact cards into flashy marquee-like images that show up full-screen on a recipient's iPhone during a call. They use a similar design language as the redesigned lock screens, with bold typography options and the ability to add Memoji.

Contact Posters, new stickers experience, and live voicemail

There's also a new live transcription feature for voicemail that lets users view a transcript of the message a caller is leaving in real-time. Users can choose to ride it out or pick up the call, and it's all handled on-device. They'll be able to leave a message on FaceTime, too.

The ability to filter searches with additional terms, a feature that jumps to the most recent message so users can catch up more easily, voice message transcriptions (similar to what the Pixel 7 series introduced), and a series of new features called "Check In" that shares one's live location and status with someone else are some updates to messages. When users go home, it can notify a friend automatically. If they're in a dead zone, it can also communicate their phone's battery and cell service status to prevent misunderstanding.

A look at the new "Check In" feature

iOS 17 includes keyboard updates such as enhancements to autocorrect. It now relies on a new language model for better accuracy, plus an easier shortcut to revert to the original word written, if necessary. There are now in-line predictive typing and sentence-level autocorrections to correct more grammatical mistakes. It'll finally learn a user's favorite cuss words, too. Dictation also now uses a new AI model that's more accurate.

Journal, a brand-new app, intelligently proposes events one might wish to record in a journal entry. A user may add activities, music, and images to their entries, and they can set up recurring reminders to get writing. For further privacy, it is end-to-end encrypted.

A new charging mode called "StandBy" converts the screen into a status display with the date and time. When one's phone is in landscape charging mode, it immediately turns on and may display information like live activities, widgets, and smart stacks.

Siri is getting a boost, too, and finally, it's time to drop the "hey" from "Hey Siri." It will also recognize back-to-back commands.

This version of iOS follows a meaningful update in iOS 16, which included a major lock screen overhaul, useful iMessage features like editing and unsend, and the time-sensitive live activities. It was an update that centered on helping one do more with their phone while having to dive into apps less for simple tasks.

Unfortunately, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X users won't be able to update their phones to the iOS 17. Only those with an iPhone XR, XS, XS Max, iPhone SE (second generation), or later will be able to enjoy the new features. (ANI)