New details about iOS 15 — the next OS version for the iPhone — have emerged and they suggest significant software updates are a few months away.
The next version of iOS will reportedly improve the way notifications are handled and will debut a new home screen for the iPad, according to a Bloomberg report citing "people with knowledge of the matter." There will also be an updated iOS lock screen and additional privacy protection features will launch on the flagship phones.
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Apple typically releases new iOS versions in September alongside the launch of its new phones. The iPhone 13 is expected to arrive within that timeframe although delays could push the launch back to October. While the full release is several months away, we should get a taste of iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 at WWDC beginning June 7. This is when Apple will try to drum up developer excitement for the next versions of its mobile OS so new features can be quickly adopted.
As for what those features are, one additional will give users more control over notification preferences, so your iPhone will only make a sound or vibrate when you want it to. This will take the shape of a new menu option where you can choose what you're doing — driving, working, sleeping or custom categories — and notifications will behave differently based on what you pick.
There will also be a new Lock Screen where you can see the upgraded notification menu, which can also be found in the Control Center (where you can quickly adjust settings). The report also mentions the ability to set automatic replies under different conditions, not only when you're driving. iMessage will also get a major update to make it a direct competitor to WhatsApp and position it as a proper social media channel.
The iPad, including the new iPad Pro 2021, will also get some love with iPadOS receiving a new Home Screen with widgets. Users will also get more privacy info and know exactly which apps are collecting their data. macOS, on the other hand, will supposedly receive only minor updates, which isn't surprising considering last year's macOS Big Sur was a massive revamp of the desktop OS.
As Bloomberg warns, the conferencing is several weeks away so the aforementioned changes are subject to change.