What Apple’s New iOS 7 and iPhone 5S Bring to the Table

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Apple promised to “brighten everyone’s day” with their keynote on Tuesday afternoon from their Cupertino Headquarters.

Well, for this iOS Fanboy, that certainly was the case.

Although our team has had access to iOS 7 since this Summer, when our developers headed out for Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco (see our past adventures at WWDC here), starting on September 18th this update becomes available to the masses.

Given that around 80% of EverTrue users are on iOS  we’ve kept a close eye on what these changes will bring. So, without further ado, for all our fearless fundraisers who use iPhones and iPads: below is my take on a few of iOS 7’s brightest new features and a look at new products announced yesterday.

A Sharp New User Experience

The redesigned lock screen and home screen will not go unnoticed. Apple has let go of their real-life design metaphors such as the hard-wood bookshelves in iBooks and yellow-note-pad with marker-style fonts in Notes. In lieu of the “skeuomorphic” design, iOS comes dressed in eye-popping colors, subtle animations and much better use of the four-inch display.

An Accessible Control Center, Settings

An easily-accessible control panel has been the one feature making Apple fan-boys and girls jealous of Android users for years. The long-awaited functionality will allow users to do things such as toggle Airplane Mode, Do Not Disturb and Rotation-Lock, queue up music, adjust brightness, launch the Camera or Clock apps with one tap, and even quite a bit more. With a quick swipe up from the bottom of the display, you will unveil a control panel with switches, buttons and sliders ready to control a wide variety of settings and applications with one touch.

Siri is Growing Up

No longer only a woman’s voice, users can toggle between a male or female voice to chat with on Siri. Apple has added quite a bit of functionality to Siri including the ability to search Wikipedia and the internet without leaving the new, beautiful semi-transparent interface. Apple has also stepped up the Twitter integration with Siri, allowing you to control one of the most real-time information sources on the web with the sound of your voice.

New Hardware!

Apple’s newest line of iPhones announced yesterday at the media event in Cupertino, CA makes the arrival of iOS 7 even more exciting. New technologies built into the iPhone 5S will create a more intimate relationship between you and your iPhone. Touting a fingerprint reader in the home button, users will now be able to unlock their phone, approve purchases and likely control other aspects of the software safely and securely.

For the Camera Geeks

The iPhone 5S’ camera modifications are also a welcome change. By increasing the size of the photo-sensor by 15%, users will be able to see more of the photos they take with more detail in every inch of the photos. Dropping the aperture setting to 2.2f ensures that the focal point of the photo will be crisper than ever before. Last but not least, a very noticeable difference is the arrival of a second, “warm” flash. Gone are the days of blowing out photos in low light with the harsh flash of iPhone; with over 1,000 different combinations of intensity, the cool (bluish) and warm (orangish) flashes will adjust themselves based on the lighting conditions preserving accurate white balance and even lighting. Bottom-line: pictures from reunion will have never looked this good from your iPhone!

No doubt, like any other major software release from Apple, there will be a great deal of criticism around the product design and feature implementation. Being a fanboy, I struggle to find problems with the software, though I will admit that the new design may be jarring at first glance. (Okay, and maybe second glance too.) The bright colors and subtle changes to animations don’t always seem to “fit” what we have known to be as Apple’s “M.O.” but after a few moments of tapping around, exploring new features I expect iOS 7 to be well received by the masses and maybe even help out in taking back a little of that Android market share.

Discover apps that can power up your institution’s mission with our Fundraisers Guide to the App Store!

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