The flashy projected features of the iPhone 8 (or iPhone X?) are dominating the Apple rumor mill of late, but let’s not overlook the iOS software on the inside. Developers this week gained access to iOS 10.3 beta 1, even as iOS 11 rumors heated up.
If you have an Apple Developer account you can go ahead and grab iOS 10.3 beta 1 now, but if not, here’s what developers will be dabbling with (BGR shares the release notes here). The public will gets its chance to experience the new iOS features for iPhones and iPads in the weeks or months to come.
Addressing the much joked about issue of how to track down your lost AirPods (your lost $159 AirPods!), Apple will enable iPhone and iPad users to enlist the Find My iPhone app for the job. The last device to be used with the wireless earbuds can be made to crank out a loud sound.
Cult of Mac highlights a floating, one-handed iPad keyboard that essentially looks like an iPhone one.
iCloud becomes more useful in several ways, including that you can get a more visual view of how much cloud storage you have remaining and for Verizon customers, you can now make/answer calls from any iCloud-connected device, including Apple Watch (other carriers already support this feature).
MSN reports that other 10.3 beta 1 features include the ability to book Uber and Lyft rides using Siri voice commands and more down in the weeds, “the iPhone’s file system will be upgraded to Apple File System (APFS), which allows multiple file systems to share the space on the device memory instead of fixed amount of space for each file system.”
Another handy new feature: Use 3D Touch to gain instant weather info from the Maps app.
LOOKING TO iOS 11
Israeli website The Verifier got Apple watchers worked up this week with a report (from “several people familiar with iOS development”) that iOS 11 could support a predictable but useful feature: group Facetime video chats for up to 5 people. Yes, catching up with the likes of Skype.
That’d be a nice one-two punch with the debut of the iPhone 8 in the fall. (MORE: The iMore blog has a nice rundown of possible iOS 11 features.)