When iOS 7 arrives this fall, there will be the usual frenzy associated with a major software update for our iPhones and iPads. This one is different. This isn’t a subtle change, with a few highly requested tent pole features. It’s polarizing and some would say transformative. Sure it’ll have new features like Control Center, but with all advances, some features had to go. Here’s what you’ll miss when upgrading to iOS 7.
iOS 7 features an all-new notification center, that you can access from the lock screen. In iOS 6, those who had configured Twitter or Facebook accounts, had an option to update their status or tweet from the Notification panel. Swipe down, tap to tweet, type your message and send. A relatively quick and painless way to interact with your favorite social networks. On Apple’s website, those features do not appear in the new Notification Center, which focuses on missed calls, mail, to-dos and other notifications. Goodbye old Tap to Tweet and Tap to Post. You’ll be missed.
There has been plenty of uproar over the icons, despite their beta label. While there is a chance we’ll see less vibrance as things get polished, the icon design philosophy isn’t likely to change. With that comes a new flat design, which for many is a welcome change. What you’ll find yourself missing the most are the drop shadows that in the past, Apple has automatically added to their apps and third party applications. If you are the type that enjoys a good light wallpaper, you might find yourself singing “I’ll be missing you”, referring to those oh so terrific drop shadows. I’ll say it now, get yourself a good supply of dark patterns or backgrounds in advance of updating to iOS 7.
Buttons have become a staple in iOS. Those neatly labeled and beveled graphics are easily recognized as a way to navigate apps and iOS. From what Apple has shown us in their iOS 7 preview, the buttons might as well be a passenger on Oceanic Airlines. All that remains is a wispy font face. It will be interesting to see how developers handle the transition and perhaps offer up some resistance to the removal of a major UI component. Text is the new button in iOS 7.
If you have a lot of apps, I’m guessing you rely heavily on search. Next to the home button, swiping right to enter search is a security blanket of sorts. No they didn’t remove search in iOS 7, but they have significantly changed how you access it.
Skeuomorphism. Okay, no one should miss that. Sayonara green felt.
With past upgrades, we’ve said it’s like getting a new phone, but for free. That’s the beauty of how Apple has handled iOS upgrades. While some might not get all the new bells and whistles, older iPhones will still have a chance to experience the new car smell of iOS 7. The transition to iOS 7 will be unlike any other, with sweeping changes. We’ll find out later this fall if the above features find their way into the final release of iOS 7. You might want to start saying your goodbyes in advance of saying hello to iOS 7.
Editor’s note: iOS 7 is in beta. It’s likely that some features will find their way back into the final release. This article is based upon information presented by Apple during WWDC and on their website.