iOS 18 biggest update in history according to reports

What to anticipate from the iPhone software update this year is as follows.

iOS 18
iOS 18

We now know when this year’s WWDC will take place, so the countdown to our first official glimpse at iOS 18 has officially started. Previews of Apple’s next software update are often shown during WWDC. But, considering all the excitement surrounding iOS 18, there is extra anticipation for WWDC 2024.

In particular, iOS 18 is expected to demonstrate Apple’s first deliberate attempts to incorporate AI-powered features widely. And some have been persuaded by that modification that iOS 18 will be a significant release. “According to sources, the upcoming operating system is regarded by the company as among the largest iOS updates, if not the largest, in the company’s history,” Mark Gurman of Bloomberg wrote as an afterthought to a January 2024 essay about Apple’s plans.

Though a lot of that sentiment is undoubtedly being fueled by possible AI features, iOS 18 probably offers more. It appears that the program is receiving interface improvements, and you can anticipate the regular flurry of new features and updates for already-existing apps.

Although WWDC might provide an early peek at the upcoming iPhone software, iOS 18 won’t be finalized at this time. A public beta is scheduled to launch in the summer, allowing the more adventurous elements of society to test out any newly added features. All of this builds up to iOS 18’s official release later this year, probably right before the arrival of the iPhone 16 models.

Indeed, that is the reason why, even ahead of Apple’s preview, people are enthusiastic about iOS 18. Here’s a closer look at nine possible modifications to the iPhone that this update may bring.

A new version of Siri

A new version of Siri

With each new iOS version, Siri gains additional capabilities that enable the digital assistant to respond to more queries without having to give the dreaded “Here’s what I found online” answer. Over time, Siri has proven to be a more dependable performer, and in recent years, it appears that its speech and dialogue patterns have become notably more organic. However, iOS 18 has the potential to improve upon Apple’s digital assistant.

In particular, there have been rumors that iOS 18 will have Siri 2.0, which will make its premiere at WWDC. Although later reports have refuted the notion that Apple is developing a chatbot of its own, the change to the virtual assistant was initially perceived as the company’s effort at a chatbot. (Those reports do, however, leave open the possibility that Apple will use a third party’s chatbot; there have been rumors that Apple and Google are talking about integrating Google’s Gemini tool into the iPhone.)

Whether or not Siri is a chatbot, there are reports that the upcoming iOS 18 upgrade will make it more conversational and capable of handling intricate tasks. We’ll just have to wait for the iOS 18 preview to find out the exact nature of the improvements coming to Siri, but the volume of acquisitions and job opportunities Apple has in this space undoubtedly indicates that something is in the works.

Generative AI coming to built-in apps

Other forms of artificial intelligence are anticipated in iOS 18, such as generative AI driving new features in some of your favorite apps. Examples of how AI assists iPhone users in automatically creating playlists in the Music app or slides in the Keynote presentation tool are explicitly mentioned in a Mark Gurman report for Bloomberg. Large language models are apparently being used to train the Spotlight search function. Additionally, Apple may be copying Samsung’s Galaxy AI playbook by incorporating summarizing and formatting capabilities into Notes and Safari.

Apple has never hidden the fact that it is actively monitoring generative AI. CEO Tim Cook stated, “Later this year, I look forward to sharing with you the ways we will break new ground in generative AI, another technology we believe can redefine the future,” in a February statement to the company’s shareholders. The timing corresponds well with a preview of iOS 18.

RCS support

This is something that Apple is known to be adding eventually; we’re just going to assume that it will launch with iOS 18.

RCS support

We are discussing the rich communication services, or RCS, standard. In late 2018, Apple said that it would provide RCS capability through a software upgrade at a later date in 2024. When it occurs, which is most likely going to happen with iOS 18, communications between iPhone and Android users should get better.

It should be noted, however, that Apple’s iMessage program will continue to provide the superior iPhone talking experience, even in the presence of the green bubbles that serve as a barrier between iOS and Android and are frequently mentioned in federal antitrust cases. However, RCS support will include features for inter-platform communication such as read receipts and typing indicators.

Home screen customization

Home screen customization

Although there has been discussion of iOS 18 bringing some major changes to the appearance of Apple’s iPhone software, not much information has been released thus far. One exception is a claim from another Mark Gurman dispatch stating that iOS 18 will enable users to more effectively personalize the appearance of their home screens.

You may currently reorganize which applications show up on which screens and alter the wallpaper on your iPhone’s home screen. With the release of iOS 14 in 2020, widgets could also be added to the home screen. However, you’ve been bound to the 6 x 4 grid, where the app icons are arranged in rows and columns, for the entire duration.

It’s said that iOS 18’s customization options would allow you to position app icons more freely, allowing gaps and empty areas wherever you choose. More freedom in-app placement sounds like a good thing, but we feel there’s more to this adjustment than what we’ve heard so far.

Custom routes in Maps

iOS 18 won’t be receiving all of its updates with an AI focus. Some improvements will be more traditional in nature, adding new functionality to already-existing programs to make them function better. This is also the situation with Maps, which iOS 18 has already planned to provide some upgrades to.

Custom routes in Maps

The feature that most people will find exciting is the option to personalize your routes while obtaining directions in Maps; this was discovered in some of the app’s code. You seem to be able to select directions when creating a route, but we’ll have to wait for Apple’s official statement.

For instance, when I’m planning a road trip, Maps and I have completely different ideas about how to get to the closest highway on-ramp from my house. My guess is that I’ll be able to personalize my route and drive on the streets I want to drive rather than having to disregard maps for that portion of my journey, as opposed to the ones Apple has determined are the fastest. In addition, the feature ought to be useful if there’s a certain location you’d like to visit that’s not on the Map app’s recommended path.

Topographical maps

Topographical maps, which watchOS 10 previously supported, may make their way to your iPhone as well. This is because, according to the code found in the operating system, the feature is expected to be enabled in the iOS 18 upgrade. Additionally, the capability may also be included in the Maps app in future macOS and VisionOS releases.

It is likely that topographical maps would be enabled on the Apple Watch initially, as they display features like trails and elevation. However, the Fitness app records steps and the iPhone version of Maps includes walking directions, so bringing the feature to iOS seems like a natural fit.

Accessibility features

Early information about the accessibility enhancements coming to iOS 18 (as well as the upcoming macOS release, while we’re at it) has been provided to MacRumors. Adaptive Voice Shortcuts, which let you use a special phrase to control a certain accessibility setting, seem to be the standout feature. It should make using the iPhone considerably simpler for those who have trouble interacting with touch screens.

However, sources close to MacRumors claim that’s not the only accessibility enhancement. Better phrase organizing features will reportedly be added to Live Speech, and apps including Books, News, Stocks, Tips, and Weather will now be supported by the Adjustable Text Size feature.

Hearing Aid mode for AirPods Pro users

Speaking of accessibility features, iOS 18 is rumored to have one that will greatly increase the value of the AirPods Pro for those who have hearing loss. According to a Bloomberg story, iOS 18 may include a hearing aid mode. If Apple obtains the necessary regulatory authorization, the feature would be compatible with AirPods Pro wireless earphones that are in their second generation.

Extensive iPhone support

Extensive iPhone support

One of the most anxious moments at WWDC each year is figuring out which phones will be able to run the latest iOS upgrade. Even though Apple offers free iOS and security upgrades for at least five years, hearing about all the amazing new features that iPhones will soon have and then finding out that you have to upgrade from an older device can be frustrating.

If you think that the iPhone support in iOS 18 has been destroyed, then there may be some good news to report. According to rumors, the software upgrade should function on any iPhone that can run iOS 17, which brings us back to the 2018 models of the iPhone XR and XS as well as the 2020 and 2022 iPhone SE editions.

That is not to assume that every function will be supported by every one of those phones. We’ve heard, for instance, that certain of the more demanding AI features might only be available on iPhone 16 devices. And who knows what other impending iOS 18 features might call for more recent silicon? However, any additional year that you are able to get out of your iPhone is a reason for celebration.

iOS 18 outlook

Remember that software leaks are typically more difficult to find than hints on the next iPhone models. This is because Apple develops its software internally, preventing unduly talkative third-party providers from disclosing future specifications.

That is another way of saying that, even though WWDC is still more than two months away, we’ve already gotten a decent understanding of some of the new features of iOS 18. We discuss whether iOS 18 turns out to be as momentous as everyone seems to believe it will be, so stay tuned for more information about this upcoming iPhone software update to surface.

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